Dumoulin and Bardet lose time at Tour after bikes break

UAE Team Emirates rider Daniel Martin of Ireland wins the stage

Grellier struck off by himself, but his break ended with 6km to go and the sprinters took over with a 400 metres drag race to the finish which ended with Groenewegen beating Sagan and Gaviria for the second time in two days.

Having finished sixth on the previous day's uphill finish and remembering back to his second place behind another Ag2r rider, Alexis Vuillermoz, when the Tour was last on the Mur-de-Bretagne back in 2015, Martin gambled on an early attack yesterday.

Cavendish's Dimension Data team were still well placed after a double right-hander with two kilometres to go strung out the peloton, but he did not have the power needed at the top of the gradual climb to the line.

Mitchelton-Scott's Adam Yates and Sky's Chris Froome remain 13th and 14th, with their deficit to yellow growing to 65 seconds.

This means that after six stages Dumoulin is now 1 minute 23 seconds behind current race leader Greg Van Avermaet (BMC Racing). However, he secured his lead in the overall standings by 2 seconds over teammate Tejay Van Garderen to retain the yellow jersey.

The 231-kilometer (143.5-mile) trek from Fougeres, home to the best-preserved and largest medieval fortress in Europe, concluded in Chartres, site of a vast cathedral known for its stained-glass windows.

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"It was a very fast ascent and I just held on really", said the Belgian, who finished alongside team leader Richie Porte at three seconds off the pace to pull on the jersey for a third day.

Laurent Pichon, another French rider with Fortuneo-Samsic, then also got away alone for a spell.

Sagan, who was been guilty of watching Gaviria a little bit too much in the recent stages, opened up his sprint early today and was overhauled by Groenewegen, Andre Greipel (Lotto-Soudal) and the Quick-Step rider.

The overall favorites should be tested again in Roubaix, before heading down to the Alps next week.

"I think it's fantastic, I can't find the right words to express how it feels to win", said Degenkolb, who now has stage wins in all three Grand Tours.

The record-breaking Slovak cyclist, along with rival Fernando Gaviria, is making Tour de France a two-man show. The four-time Tour victor, aiming for a fourth successive Grand Tour victory, went straight on at a bend entering the eighth cobbled sector but recovered to finish in the main group.

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