Live coverage of stage three of the Tour de Suisse from Sarnen to Heiden.
Hello and welcome to the Cyclingnews live coverage of stage three.
Today's stage is 202.9km long and includes three cat 2 climbs. It seems perfect day for a breakaway.
170 riders started the stage. Sadly Frank Schlck (Trek Factory Racing) did not start. He crashed hard yesterday and is still suffering with concusion.
The first attack of the day from Julien Kern (Ag2r-La Mondiale). However he was quickly caught.
Martin Kohler (BMC) and Steven Kruijswijk (Belkin) got away after 20km of the stage and now have a lead of 1:30.
Stage 1 winner Tony Martin remains the race leader and so his Omega Pharma-QuickStep has the duty to lead the chase of the two attackers.
The duo's lead has now hit 3:30. They have formed the break of the day.
Steven Kruijswijk (Belkin) rode the Giro d'Italia this year but was forced to quit the ace on stage 9. However he is a good stage race and has a chance to take the race lead if the breakaways stays clear.
He is 1:00 behind Tony Martin in the GC an so is now virtual race leader
Kohler is 88th in GC, at 5:50.
148km remaining from 203km
The riders are enjoying blue skies and warm weather for today's stage. They race in the hills and not the mountains, so conditions should be good all day.
The break's lead is now 4:20.
After covering the first 55km at a brisk pace, the riders now face the first climb of the day to Sattal, climbing almost 500m in altitude in 10km on the road.
The break and the peloton are on the climb. The gap is now 5:00.
The break has lost almost a minute on the climb. The gap is down to 4:10.
The break has lost more than a minute on the climb. The gap is down to 3:45.
110km remaining from 203km
The riders on the descent of the climb and will then hit the feed zone after 111km.
Martin Kohler was first to the top of the climb and so collected eight points. Kruisjwick was second and scored six points.
In the peloton, Bjorn Thurau (Europcar) scored four points for third place.
If you missed the action at the Tour de Suisse from the weekend, check out our full stage reports and photo galleries.
Click here for Sunday's second stage won by Australia's Cameron Meyer (Orica-GreenEdge)
83km remaining from 203km
After 120km of racing, the gap has grown again. It is now 3:55, no doubt to the peloton easing as the riders collected their lunch at the feed zone.
However the final 80km of the stage heads into the hills, with five climbs, two of them category 2. There is also a gradual climb up to the finish in Heiden.
Trek Factory racing will be looking to improve their lot today. After two stages they have alredy lost two riders. Frank Schleck was a non-starter this morning, after he crashed on the final descent yesterday. You can read the full article here
74km remaining from 203km
The riders are currently descending their war towards the foot of the second climb of the day the Wasserfluh and they have brought the gap to the two leaders down to 3:05
The gap is really coming down fast now, with more than a minute being lopped off it. The two leaders have an advantage of 2:09 now. Kruijswijk is still the leader on the road, but that will not last much longer.
At the start today, Tom Boonen revealed that he would not ride the Tour de France this year, despite the presence of the cobbles. The Belgian will ride the Eneco Tour, the Vuelta and the Worlds later in the season. You can read what he said here.
As they hit the second climb, the gap has practically disappeared. Kruijswijk and Kohler only have 15 second on the bunch. It won't be long before they're caught.
69km remaining from 203km
The catch has been made. There is still a long way to go though, so we can expect a lot of action on this climb.
It was Orica-GreenEdge who did the work to bring these two guys back. Do they have something planned? Can they take their second stage win in as many days?
The Wasserfluh has been completed and it's still all together. Omega Pharma-QuickStep will want to keep this together for as long as they can, but there are a number of strong climbers close to him in the general classification.
It seems GreenEdge do have something up their sleeve. Nino Schurter attacks.
Schurter has Laurent Didier with him and the pair have a slim advantage of 12 seconds.
Danilo Wyss and Bjorn Thurau have made it across to double the size of the leading group.
Thurau was in the break yesterday and currently leads the mountains competition.
The finale of the stage will very interesting now we have a new situation up front.
All the OPQS team is working hard to lead the chase, including Tom Boonen.
The Tinkoff-Saxo team is sat behind OPQS.
The finish is tough but OPQS seem convinced that Tony Martin can retain his race lead.
50km remaining from 203km
The gap is down to 45 seconds.
Crash! A CCC Polsat riders goes down as the road narrows.
Thurau has at up and is easing back to the peloton. However the other three are fighting on.
We have Nino Schurter (Orica-GreneEdge), Laurent Didier (Trek Factory Racing) and Danilo Wyss (BMC) up front. they're working hard to stay away.
Thurau dropped back after scoring some precious mountain points to retain his red jersey.
That's the end of the OPQS chase, with Valerio Agnoli attacking for Astana.
Tosh Van Der Sande (Lotto Belisol) is with Agnoli after going on the attack just before the Italian jumped.
Bradley Wiggins (Team Sky) is sat at the back of the peloton.
Agnoli and Van der Sande have made it across. We have five riders up front now with a 50-second lead.
33km remaining from 203km
This finale is a real fight. The third cat 2 climb of the day in the next kilometres will indicate who will come out on top.
Two Garmin-Sharp riders jumped on the footpath to move up the peloton, while on the left a train also passed the riders.
There are big crowds along the roadside as the five work smoothly together on the climb.
They will be disappointed to see Fabian Cancellara at the back of the peloton but this is a tough finale, with the pace very high.
Garmin-Sharp is driving the pace and clearly have a plan for the finale. The US-team loves to take on the race and see what happens. Can they repeat their Dauphine success.
The break is on the descent and the five are diving through every corner.
The gap is just 30 seconds after a huge effort by Johan Van Summeren.
Didier has been dropped from the break leaving four riders away.
Mark Cavendiah (OPQS) has been dropped from the peloton but Peter Sagan (Cannondale) and Ben Swift (Team Sky) are fighting to stay on so they can try their hand in the possible sprint finish.
Swiss rider Michael Albasini (Orica-GreenEdge) is also a name to remember.
23km remaining from 203km
The break is about to be caught but Agnoli has taken a flyer to try and stay away.
Agnoli starts a descent with a slight lead.
Tom Danielson and Rohan Dennis are at the back of the bunch. Perhaps something happened to one or both of them. Garmin may well switch to supporting Slagter now.
As the final climb looms, positioning before the road rises is vital.
FDJ.fr is riding to protect Thibault Pinot on the descent.
16km remaining from 203km
The peloton is lined out and descending at speed. tony Martin (OPQS) is there and looks good to defend his race lead.
The break has exploded as the FDJ.fr-lead peloton closes the gap.
Van der Sande is trying to go it alone but only has a few seconds.
Agnoli goes down on a corner while gonig very fast on the descent. He hit the grass but he seems stunned and angry.
10km remaining from 203km
The road is still twisting down the hillside. Van der Sande has a 20-second lead.
The GC contenders and some of the good climbing sprinters are waiting for the finale. John Degenkolb is there for Giant-Shimano.
The final kilometres twist and tun in the centre of the little town.
Gruppo compatto. Van der Sande has been caught.
Sagan is protected a teammate as he tries to move up in the line.
Team Sky has 3 riders up front. But not, it seems, Wiggins, who has been sulking at the back of the peloton all day.
3km remaining from 203km
The descent ends by switching onto the main road. The pace is still very high.
Matteo Trentin is riding on the front to protect Tony Martin.
2km remaining from 203km
The road climbs all the way to the line from here.
Kennaugh attacks, lining out the peloton.
Other riders have moved up and improved their position. Sagan is just behind Albasini.
There are only 30 riders in the front group.
1km remaining from 203km
Young Italian climber Formolo is sat behind Kennaugh as he winds up the speed.
Mollema is there, with ten Dam helping him. But who can beat Sagan?
Tony Martin now in charge, as Evans leads it out for BMC.
Evans leads out but Sagan and Albasini are fighting for it.
Sagan finds something extra and wins in his usual style.
Sagan swaps a hand slap with Albasini but the Swiss rider could do little to stop Sagan today.
Tony Martin safely defended his race lead and so will pull on the yellow jersey again.
Bradley Wiggins finished off the pace, and off the peloton. His GC chances are over and so probably is list chance of securing a place in the Team Sky Tour de France team.
Sagan celebrated by pointing to his legs. They definitely helped him today on the climb and sprint to the finish.
According to results, Sergio Henao finished third, with Mollema fourth.
Tony Martin (OPQS) still leads by 6 seconds ahead of Tom Dumoulin. Sagan moves up to third at 14 seconds.
Thanks for joining us for our blow by blow live coverage of the stage.
We'll have a full race report and huge photo gallery on Cyclingnews very soon.
Join us tomorrow for live coverage of stage 4 from Heiden to Ossingen. It is a flat stage and so perfect for a sprint clash between Sagan and Mark Cavendish.
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