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Tour de Suisse 2018: Stage 4


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Sho Hatsuyama (Nippo-Vini Fantini) was part of their number after bridging across with Nathan Brown, but the Japanese rider has since been distanced, and is caught in the no man's land between the break and the bunch.

Hatsuyama has now been caught by the peloton, as gentle rain begins to fall over the race. 

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The general classification was as follows ahead of stage 4:

Today's stage features an early category 3 climb to Staffelegg, but the day's chief difficulty is the category 2 haul over the Saanemmoeser, the summit of which comes just 10km from the finish in Gstaad.

Sonny Colbrelli (Bahrain-Merida) claimed a fine victory on yesterday's stage, opening his sprint from 300 metres to go and then holding off both Fernando Gaviria and Peter Sagan. “For me, this win is very important. It gives me morale ahead of my next big appointment, the Tour de France. Beating sprinters like Sagan and Gaviria gives me morale, and I’m happy because it shows I’m on the right track,” he said afterwards. Read the full story here.

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Already triumphant on stage 2, Peter Sagan was looking to add to his running tally of 16 Tour de Suisse stage wins yesterday, but he was unable to overhaul Colbrelli in the final sprint. The world champion had previously accelerated on the final climb before relenting. "I tried on the climb but then I saw that there were a lot of riders with me in the group, so I went for the sprint," Sagan said."It wasn't the plan to go on the climb; I never plan. It was already at the top of the climb when I went and there were a lot of riders on my wheel, so I decided to stop." Read the full story here.

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European champion Alexander Kristoff (UAE-Team Emirates) was among the last riders dropped on the final climb of yesterday's stage, thus missing out on the opportunity to sprint for the win. His big objective in Switzerland, of course, is to prepare for the Tour de France. “Overall I’m feeling OK," Kristoff said after stage 3. "Today it was a reduced pack but I was able to survive. I still need to improve a bit more because I want to be fighting for the win. It’s hard to say where I am with form. I think that with the power I’m going well, but I’m still a bit too heavy. I think that if I can lose two kilos and keep the same power, then I can be at my best." Read more here.

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Two of Movistar's Tour de France triumvirate are in action at the Tour de Suisse, with Mikel Landa and Nairo Quintana both fine-tuning their preparation for July. Landa told Cyclingnews yesterday that there is no internal competition for leadership of Movistar at the Tour at this juncture. "We're getting to know each other, and doing some races in order to learn to work together," Landa said. "At this race, Nairo and I are both leaders, but Andrey Amador is also looking good. We’re also thinking a lot about July." Read more here.

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Away from the Tour de Suisse, Ian Boswell is hopeful that he will make the cut for Katusha-Alpecin's Tour de France team after a fine showing at last week's Criterium du Dauphine. Patrick Fletcher has more here.

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Lizzie Deignan has weighed in on the Chris Froome salbutamol case, telling the 'When Orla met’ podcast that she believes the Team Sky rider "hasn’t had a fair process" as news of his salbutamol positive was leaked into the public domain last December. Deignan was, of course, was represented by Froome's lawyer Mike Morgan when she successfully appealed to CAS about her three whereabouts failings in the run-up to the Rio 2016 Olympics. Read more here.

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Silvan Dillier is in the long list for AG2R La Mondiale's Tour de France team, where, together with Oliver Naesen, he could play a key role in guiding Romain Bardet through the fraught opening week and, in particular, stage 9 over the cobbles of Paris-Roubaix. Dillier, of course, placed a fine second at Paris-Roubaix in April, out-sprinted only by Peter Sagan, who bridged up to him with 53km to go. "With Peter, I would say he's like an angel and a devil in the same person," Dillier said that evening. "An angel because he worked with me very well; a devil, because if you go with him in a man-to-man sprint for the finish line, he's hard to beat."

It remains to be seen how many of the fast men will survive the one remaining climb, the category 2 Saanenmöser, which goes up for 7.2km at an average gradient of 4.6%. The summit is a little under 10km from the finish.

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A crash at the rear of the peloton sees a number of riders come down. The bunch was crossing a level crossing, and the rain-soaked rail track appears to have triggered the crash.

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A delegation from Sunweb is also moving up in the peloton, with the aim of keeping Wilco Kelderman out of trouble - and keeping Michael Matthews in contention for the stage win this afternoon.

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Dillier and Peters bridge up to Brown at the head of the race. Juul-Jensen and Christian are trying to get back on terms.

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Juul-Jensen and Peters have established a gap over Brown, Ourselin and Dillier at the front of the race. This leading duo are collaborating well. They have 50 seconds in hand on the peloton.

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Peters remains second on the road. He won't catch Juul-Jensen and will struggle to hold off the bunch.

This finishing straight is interminable. Juul-Jensen risks a glance over his shoulder and begins to celebrate...

Christopher Juul-Jensen (Mitchelton-Scott) wins stage 4 of the Tour de Suisse.

Michael Matthews (Sunweb) wins the bunch sprint for second place behind the lone winner.


Stefan Kung (BMC) retains the yellow jersey of overall leader.

General classification after stage 4:


Christopher Juul-Jensen speaks: "When we had two minutes at the bottom of the climb, then suddenly the break started to believe that it was actually possible, and, yeah, I'm over the moon.

Thanks for following our live coverage of the Tour de Suisse on Cyclingnews this afternoon. We'll be back with more tomorrow. A full report, results and pictures are available here, and all the news and reaction from Gstaad will follow in due course.


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