Ireland's Sam Bennett in tears after maiden win at Tour de France

Deceuninck-Quick-Step rider sprints to victory in Stage 10 as Roglic holds on to overall lead

Irishman Sam Bennett was left in tears after sprinting away to claim a maiden stage win on the Tour de France on Tuesday.

The Deceuninck-Quick-Step rider's Stage 10 victory, on his Tour debut, ensured he reclaimed the sprint points green jersey and followed a dramatic start to the day as Tour director Christian Prudhomme tested positive for Covid-19.

Wearing his Irish champion's tunic, Bennett narrowly edged Australia's Caleb Ewan while Peter Sagan came third to lose the green jersey.

Ewan quickly rode alongside the winner to fist bump in a rare show of empathy between sprinters.

Surrounded by his teammates Bennett watched a replay before clenching his first and cheering.

"I don’t think it’s hit me because I forgot to throw the bike at the line in the moment and I thought he might have got me.

"It hasn’t hit me, I thought I’d be in floods of tears but I’m in shock," Bennett began before his voice waivered.

"I just want to thank everyone that’s been involved, I want to thank the whole team and Patrick for giving me this opportunity, just everybody it took to get to here. I want to thank my wife and everyone around me.

"You dream of it and you never think it will happen. It does and it did. it took it a while for it to hit me … Oh man.

"I was waiting to go and I thought maybe I was waiting too late. I thought I was maybe in too big a gear. I don’t know. Sorry, I don’t mean to be a crybaby."

Jumbo's Slovenian leader Primoz Roglic holds on to the overall lead with Colombia's defending champion Egan Bernal in second place in the general classification, 21 seconds adrift.

UAE Team Emirates' rider – and Stage 9 winner – Tadej Pogacar came through a scare after a crash disrupted the bunch in Rochefort with 65km to go. He made it back into the pack, though, and finished 44 seconds behind leader Roglic.

Pogacar's teammate Davide Formolo sustained a suspected fracture to his left clavicle after crashing. The Italian was taken to hospital for further assessment.

"It was a different stage but it was quite a nervous and stressful stage from the start all the way to the finish," Roglic said. "As a team, we managed it really well and the guys did a really good job.

The spectacular 168.5km run from Oleron to the island of Saint-Martin-de-Re – both of which are connected to the French mainland by road bridges – was largely free of the cross-winds that could have blown the race wide open.

Published: September 8, 2020 08:45 PM

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