Sagan wins Stage 7 as Andy Schleck slams team

Published: 4:02 AM, July 6, 2013
Updated: 4:00 AM, July 8, 2013

ALBI (FRANCE) — Peter Sagan thrashed his rivals in the fight for the green jersey when he won the seventh stage of the Tour de France after a fine tactical move by his Cannondale team yesterday.

Sagan outsprinted German John Degenkolb and Italian Daniele Bennati at the end of a 205.5km ride from Montpellier to move 94 points clear in the points classification.

Rivals Mark Cavendish and Andre Greipel scored no points on the day after being dropped following a brutal acceleration by Cannondale on a tricky climb and finishing almost 15 minutes behind Sagan.

“After my first-day crash, I didn’t feel very good and I trusted in myself every day and now, day by day, I feel better and today came my first victory in the Tour de France and I thank my team,” said Sagan.

South African Daryl Impey retained the overall leader’s yellow jersey, which he will probably lose after today’s first mountain stage, a 195-km trek between Castres and Ax-3-Domaines. Sagan now has 224 points in the points classification while Greipel has 130 and Cavendish 119.

Meanwhile, Andy Schleck criticised his own Radioshack-Leopard team after they decided against renewing their collaboration in 2014 with his older brother Frank following a failed dope test in last year’s Tour de France.

Frank, who is serving a one-year ban after failing a drugs test for the diuretic Xipamide in last year’s Tour, has denied knowingly taking a banned substance.

“For more than 11 months, the whole team said they would support Frank,” said Andy before the start of the Tour’s seventh stage yesterday. “Everybody knew that his suspension had nothing to do with doping. Now they fire him and obviously we’re not happy at all with that.”