Tour de France at a glance
ARENBERG PORTE DU HAINAUT, France -- A brief look at the fifth stage of the Tour de France on Wednesday:
Stage: The much-feared 152.5-kilometer (95-mile) stage over stretches of rough cobblestones fully lived up to its advance billing as the most treacherous of the tour. Defending champion Chris Froome crashed out before the first cobbled sector, while the day-long downpour left surviving riders muddy, soaking wrecks.
Winner: Dutchman Lars Boom won the crash-marred stage, crossing the line wet and filthy but alone, 19 seconds ahead of second-place Jakob Fuglsang and his Astana teammate Vincenzo Nibali.
Yellow Jersey: Vincenzo Nibali. The former Vuelta and Giro d'Italia winner extended his lead over the main challengers and holds a 50-second advance on Omega Pharma Quick-Step rider Michal Kwiatkowski, and 1:45 over Belgian Jurgen Van den Broeck of Lotto-Belisol. Two-time Tour winner Alberto Contador is 2:37 behind.
Quote of the day: "There are years you're on, and years you're not ... on the other hand, he'll be back." -- Race boss Christian Prudhomme, speaking about Froome's abandon.
Stat of the day: 34. The number of years since the last defending Tour champ was forced to abandon during his title defense: Bernard Hinault in 1980.
Thursday's stage: A 194-kilometer (121-mile) mostly flat stage from Arras to Reims. The stage runs along the battlefields of World War I in a nod to the centenary of its start. With a bunch sprint likely, three-time stage winner Marcel Kittel has a chance to equal his total of four stage wins on last year's Tour.
Copyright 2014 by The Associated Press
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