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Sunday 22 October 2017

'Nervous' Trentin edges out Sagan for victory

Matteo Trentin edged out Peter Sagan in a photo-finish to win the seventh stage of the Tour de France in Nancy.

The 234.5-kilometres route from Epernay was the second longest stage of this year's race and lit up when the riders reached the day's second and final categorised climb.

The summit of the Cote de Boufflers came with 5.5km to go, with Sagan (Cannondale) prominent over the top, but the leaders regrouped in the finale and Italian Trentin pipped Sagan by the narrowest of margins to claim Omega Pharma-QuickStep's first win of the 101st Tour.

The Belgian squad had to regroup following leader Mark Cavendish's exit on day one and Italian Trentin's second Tour stage win will come as a welcome success.

Tony Gallopin (Lotto-Belisol) was third as Vincenzo Nibali (Astana) retained the yellow jersey for another day by finishing 16th.

Ireland's Nicolas Roche finished 40th today, 21 seconds off the pace, and now lies 49th overall + 15' 36'' behind leader Nibali.

Complicated

"I've won by just a few centimeters," Trentin said. "It was very nervous with this complicated finale and those crashes but I didn't realise really because everything was happening behind me.

"Surprisingly, I wasn't feeling good this morning, but on the way, I felt better and better. After the first climb, I realised something was possible.

"(Michal) Kwiatkowski led me out to perfection. I had to finish it off.

"But at the end, I really thought that Sagan had passed me."

Today's lumpy, 161km eighth stage travels from Tomblaine to Gerardmer La Mauselain.

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