Ireland's Dan Martin wins Tour de France stage with perfectly-timed attack

Dan Martin celebrates as he crosses the finish line to win the sixth stage of the Tour de France. AP Photo/Christophe Ena

Ireland's Dan Martin won stage six of the Tour de France atop the Mur de Bretagne, his second career stage win in the race.

UAE Team Emirates' Martin attacked with 1.2 kilometres left of the 181km stage from Brest, which finished with two ascents of the 'Alpe d'Huez of Brittany' separated by a rolling 19km circuit.

Martin held off a late push from AG2R La Mondiale's Pierre Latour to cross the line alone, just ahead of the pack as the general classification hopefuls scrapped for seconds.

There was a slight split in the peloton behind, with Mitchelton-Scott's Adam Yates part of a group that picked up a couple of seconds on the main pack, which contained Team Sky's Chris Froome and Geraint Thomas, Movistar's Nairo Quintana and Mikel Landa, and BMC's Richie Porte.

But there were losses further back, with AG2R La Mondiale's Romain Bardet hit by problems on the short two-kilometre climb and Team Sunweb's Tom Dumoulin also distanced after suffering a mechanical problem with six kilometres left.

At the end of the stage, BMC's Greg Van Avermaet retained the yellow jersey, with Team Sky's Geraint Thomas moving up to second, three seconds back.

The provisional results showed Froome giving up five seconds to his general classification rivals.

As such, Yates was listed in 13th place and Froome in 14th, both 62 seconds off yellow, and now one second ahead of Dumoulin who dropped to 15th.

Martin, whose other career Tour stage win came in Bagneres-de-Bigorre in 2013, had finished second on this climb when it featured in the 2015 Tour and timed his attack to perfection, launching off the wheel after the Australian had made his own move and riding clear.

Latour's counter-attack came with 500 metres left but though the Frenchman closed, he could not bridge over.

Martin has closed the gap on leader Greg van Avermaet by 13 seconds and is up to 21st place overall.

PA

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