Tour de France – Stage seven: Belfort – Chalon-sur-Saone, 230km

Geraint Thomas and Egan Bernal finished safely in the peloton after stage seven played out in a bunch sprint.
 
The longest stage of this year’s event provided a chance for the team to conserve energy within the peloton as sprinter squads took up the pace-setting duties.
 
Crossing the line in the bunch ensured Thomas and Bernal held on to fifth and sixth places overall as the race reached the end of the opening week.
 
The peloton briefly split with 30km to go but was back together in time for the run-in. Dylan van Baarle and Luke Rowe hit the front to drive the team beyond the 3km threshold.
 
Dylan Groenewegen (Jumbo-Visma) bounced back from an early race crash to claim victory in Chalon-sur-Saone. The bunch finish ensured Giulio Ciccone (Trek-Segafredo) held on to yellow.
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- Geraint Thomas

"It was a long day but I guess it's better than 230km in full-on cross-winds. I don't think tomorrow will affect the GC but it will certainly be a tough day. For sure everyone thinks it's a breakaway day so there will be a big fight for that. It will probably still be going by the time we hit the first climb. It's going to be a hard start for sure. It may settle down settle down and the break might go then. It depends on numbers. I think the next two days will certainly be tough.

"Yesterday I didn't really know what to expect going in there but I felt good. It was nice to finish ahead of all the GC guys."
What’s Next?
 
The weekend brings with it a hilly test, with no less than seven categorised climbs on the run to Saint-Etienne. The final one those – the Cote de la Jaillere – is crested 12km from home. The day could provide a good chance for a breakaway success, and could prove tougher than on paper for the peloton.
Stage seven result
 
1. Dylan Groenewegen (Jumbo-Visma) 6:02:44
2. Caleb Ewan (Lotto Soudal) s.t.
3. Peter Sagan (Bora-Hansgrohe) 
4. Sonny Colbrelli (Bahrain Merida) 
5. Jasper Philipsen (UAE-Team Emirates) 
24. Egan Bernal (Team INEOS) s.t.
25. Geraint Thomas (Team INEOS)

Overall Standings:

1. Giulio Ciccone (Trek-Segafredo) 29:17:39
2. Julian Alaphilippe (Deceuninck-Quick-Step) +6”
3. Dylan Teuns (Bahrain Merida) +32”
4. George Bennett (Jumbo-Visma) 47”
5. Geraint Thomas (Team INEOS) +49”
6. Egan Bernal (Team INEOS) +53”

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