Norway's Alexander Kristoff made a late charge ahead of two breakaway riders to claim stage 15 of the Tour de France on Sunday – his second stage victory of the race.
Vincenzo Nibali finished in the middle of the lead pack to maintain his overall lead of 4:37 ahead of Spain's Alejandro Valverde. France's Romain Bardet sat 4:50 back of the pacesetter.
After two arduous days in the Alps, the riders settled in for a relatively flat 222 kilometer ride from Tallard to Nimes. Switzerland's Martin Elmiger and New Zealand's Jack Bauer had maintained a lead nearly throughout the entire race before Kristoff and the rest of the lead pack overtook them.
“It was a little bit late for comfort. It was very close,” Kristoff said to the AP. “I thought I would be second … We turned on the gas.”
Bauer, who finished 10th, burst into tears after he crossed the finish line after leading for the majority of the race.
The riders get a second off day on Monday before heading into the Pyrenees for the final week of the Tour de France.