Tour de France 2018 stage 8 -- Dylan Groenewegen wins on Bastille Day

Dan Martin celebrates as he crosses the line to take yesterday’s sixth stage of the Tour De France

BMC's Greg Van Avermaet retained the yellow jersey, and extended his lead by one second to seven over Team Sky's Geraint Thomas after nicking third place on the bonus sprint.

Dumoulin and Bardet entered the three-week race among the chosen few riders considered strong enough to challenge four-time champion Chris Froome.

Tom Dumoulin suffered another blow having already lost time following a late mechanical on stage six of the 2018 Tour de France, after being slapped with a 20-second time penalty for drafting.

Great French hope Romain Bardet (Ag2r) and last year's Giro d'Italia victor Tom Dumoulin (Sunweb) were the biggest losers among the overall favourites, losing 31 seconds and 53 seconds respectively.

"Then I had to chase and that effort was fatal".

Groenewegen said: "My legs are better every day".

170 riders started Stage 6 but it was Martin who triumphed despite taking an almighty gamble to sprint for the front.

Martin counterattacked when Richie Porte jumped ahead and nobody immediately tried to reel him in.

Five years after his first stage win and the last Irish victory on the Tour, at Bagneres-du-Bigorres in the Pyrenees, Martin took glory on the shorter but equally steep slopes of the aptly named Mur de Bretagne, or "Wall of Brittany".

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"I could see Latour coming".

'I'm not fazed by any of the background noise at all - I just get on with racing, it's water off a duck's back to me.

Four-time victor Chris Froome remained over a minute behind Van Avermaet, a support rider for BMC leading hope Richie Porte.

Dylan Groenewegen won his second Tour de France stage in a row after outlasting his rivals in a bunch sprint finish in Amiens.

The Irishman, victor of stage six on the Mur-de-Bretagne, was one of several riders to fall, with Quick-Step Floors' Julian Alaphilippe and Tom Skujins in the polka-dot jersey also caught out.

Around 95km from Chartres the peloton split in a cross wind, trapping Irishman Martin (Team Emirates) in the second group.

It was Peter Sagan (BORA-hasngrohe) who followed the pace-making of Richeze and used the momentum to hit out first towards the finish line.

Friday's flat 231-kilometre leg from Fougeres to Chartes is the longest stage of this Tour.

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