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Trentin hands Omega-Pharma 4th stage win
13:41 AEST Sun Jul 14 2013

Omega-Pharma's Matteo Trentin handed Italy its maiden win of the 100th Tour de France when he beat Swiss Michael Albasini and American Andrew Talansky in a sprint finish at the end of an entertaining 14th stage on Saturday.

Britain's yellow jersey holder Chris Froome, of Team Sky, finished with the peloton and his chief rivals just over seven minutes adrift.

Froome did not come under attack during the undulating 191km ride from Saint-Pourcain-sur-Sioule to Lyon and still leads Dutchman Bauke Mollema (Belkin) by 2min 28sec and Spain's former two-time winner Alberto Contador (Saxo) by 2:45.

Australia's Cadel Evans (BMC), the 2011 winner, dropped one place to 13th but maintained a gap of almost seven minutes to Froome.

A day after Froome and several leading challengers lost 1:09 to key rivals Contador and Mollema, the contenders for overall victory kept their powder dry ahead of Sunday's first summit finish at Mont Ventoux.

"I'm totally focused on the general classification, but of course it would be a dream to win at Mont Ventoux," said Froome, who won on the only previous summit finish of this edition at Ax-Trois-Domaines on stage eight.

"I have been up there. I'm really glad I have seen it because it's a really tough climb. My focus is going to be on keeping yellow, possibly to build on the advantage I have.

"But it will be interesting because a lot of guys will be targeting it tomorrow."

After a frenetic start to Saturday's stage a group of 18 riders finally broke free and went on to build a healthy lead.

Cracks in their collaboration began to appear around 20km from the finish.

With two of the day's seven small climbs still to negotiate, Frenchman Julien Simon tried his hand and crossed the summit of the 1.8km Duchere climb with a 20sec lead.

However the Sojasun rider's hopes of becoming France's first stage winner on this edition ended when he was caught by GreenEdge rider Albasini just outside the final kilometre.

Attacks by veteran Jens Voigt (RadioShack) and German Simon Geschke (Argos) came to nothing and, just as Albasini began powering towards the finish, Trentin opened up his sprint to finish half a wheel in front.

Trentin's win means Omega-Pharma now have four stage wins following victories by sprinter Mark Cavendish (two) and time trialist Tony Martin.

Normally a part of Cavendish's lead-out train, the 23-year-old Italian said his experience working for the 25-time stage winner had paid off.

"When you work alongside a rider like Cavendish, you learn a thing or two. I just waited patiently and unleashed my sprint with 100 (metres) to go.

"We're all super happy. All my teammates came behind the podium to congratulate me and that was really nice."