Sagan seizes stage and yellow jersey

World champion Peter Sagan’s first victory on the Tour de France since 2013 saw the Slovakian sensation move into a career-first yellow jersey in Cherbourg after an explosive stage two in Normandy.

Sagan of Tinkoff beat Etixx – Quick-Step rider Julian Alaphilippe into second place and Alejandro Valverde of Movistar into third on an uphill finish in Cherbourg to seal the fifth Tour stage win of his career and claim the yellow jersey for the first time.

Chris Froome  of Team Sky followed on the same time in 10th place, but Alberto Contador riding for Tinkoff lost 48 seconds and Richie Porte of BMC Racing shipped 1min 45sec as their hopes of overall victory took damaging early blows. Previous race leader Mark Cavendish of Dimension Data finished 1min 45sec down after being dropped in a hilly final 3.5km containing a 1.9km climb and then a steep 700m ramp to the line. Sagan now rises to the top of the general classification and opens up leads of eight seconds over second-placed Alaphilippe and 10 seconds over third-placed Valverde.

 Froome has jumped to fifth overall, 14 seconds down on Sagan, but Contador is now 1min 2sec adrift in 62nd after being distanced on the final climb as he struggled with the injuries sustained in a crash on stage one. Porte, meanwhile, is 1min 59sec down in 81st overall following a cruel slice of misfortune. The 31-year-old Australian had been well placed with 4km to go but then suffered a puncture and had to endure a long wait for a replacement wheel. Movistar’s Nairo Quintana, who is the second favourite for overall victory, finished in the lead group in 17th place and remains on the same time as Froome in seventh overall.

General classification

1 Peter Sagan (Svk) Tinkoff, 8:34:42
2 Julian Alaphilippe (Fra) Etixx – Quick-Step, +8sec
3 Alejandro Valverde (Esp) Movistar, +10
4 Warren Barguil (Fra) Giant-Alpecin, +14
5 Chris Froome (GB) Team Sky, same time
6 Greg Van Avermaet (Bel) BMC Racing, st
7 Nairo Quintana (Col) Movistar, st
8 Roman Kreuziger (Cze) Tinkoff, st
9 Simon Gerrans (Aus) Orica-BikeExchange, st
10 Dan Martin (Irl) Etixx – Quick-Step, st
Notable others:
62 Alberto Contador (Esp) Tinkoff, +48
81 Richie Porte (Aus) BMC Racing, +1:45

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