Van Aert wins Tour stage 4 in style and extends overall lead

Jul 4, 2022, 8:57 PM | Updated: Jul 5, 2022, 9:23 am
Slovenia's Tadej Pogacar, wearing the best young rider's white jersey takes the start of the fourth...

Slovenia's Tadej Pogacar, wearing the best young rider's white jersey takes the start of the fourth stage of the Tour de France cycling race over 171.5 kilometers (106.6 miles) with start in Dunkerque and finish in Calais, France, Tuesday, July 5, 2022. (AP Photo/Daniel Cole )

(AP Photo/Daniel Cole )

CALAIS, France (AP) — Belgian rider Wout van Aert won the hilly fourth stage of the Tour de France and extended his overall lead after attacking strongly on the day’s final climb on Tuesday.

The Belgian rider kept the leader’s yellow jersey for the Jumbo-Visma team after taking it for the first time on Saturday. He also extended his lead in the green jersey contest for best sprinter.

Van Aert shook up the peloton when he surged ahead up the last of the five climbs — a 900-meter ascent up Cote du Cap Blanc-Nez at a gradient of 7.5 % — about 10 kilometers (6 miles) from the end.

He said he felt an early attack was the best way to avoid a mass sprint at the line.

“I didn’t want to take the risk of losing anymore. It was quite obvious that we were trying something with the team,” he said. “I went full gas to see what would happen. I went all out.”

The 27-year-old Van Aert is considered one of the best multi-skilled riders in the world and is a former three-time cyclo-cross world champion and a one-day classics specialist.

The Jumbo-Visma rider flapped his hands like a bird’s wings as he sat up on his bike. He crossed the line eight seconds clear of countryman Jasper Philipsen of the Alpecin-Fenix team, with Jumbo-Visma teammate Christophe Laporte taking third place in a sprint finish.

“This jersey gives wings. It was definitely a tough climb but this stage was very likely going to end up in bunch sprint,” Van Aert said. “It was difficult to finish alone, but thanks to the work of my teammates, I did it. It was up to me to finish it off.”

Van Aert picked up a 10-second time bonus and is now 25 seconds ahead of Yves Lampaert in the overall standings and 32 seconds clear of two-time defending champion Tadej Pogacar.

Pogacar’s rival Primoz Roglic, the 2020 Tour runner-up and Van Aert’s teammate, stayed seventh overall and remained nine seconds behind Pogacar, with both finishing in the main pack.

After a travel day, riders tackled a sunny 171.5-kilometer (106.3-mile) route from the coastal city of Dunkirk to Calais, where riders could see the English coastline when they arrived into the much-used port location. Van Aert completed it in 4 hours, 1 minute, 36 seconds.

Danish rider Magnus Cort, who thrilled crowds with his breakaway rides during three intense days in Denmark, was again in the early breakaway — this time alongside Anthony Perez.

Perez pulled ahead some 45 kilometers (28 miles) out and Cort was caught by the peloton shortly after. Cort picked up more points in the polka-dot jersey bid but much more difficult climbs in the Alps and Pyrenees are still to come.

Wednesday’s fifth stage is a flat stage for sprinters over 157 kilometers (97 miles) starting at Lille Metropole and going over some of the feared cobblestones that feature on the Paris-Roubaix one-day classic.

The race ends on July 24 in Paris.


More AP sports: and

Copyright © The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.


IndyCar points leader Will Power, of Australia, poses by his car after qualifying on  the pole for ...
Associated Press

Will Power ties Mario Andretti’s IndyCar pole record at 67

MADISON, Ill. (AP) — IndyCar points leader Will Power won the pole for the Saturday night race at World Wide Technology Raceway and tied Mario Andretti for series pole record. The 67th pole of Power’s career was won Friday on the short oval outside St. Louis. The Australian turned a lap at 183.089 mph to […]
16 hours ago
New York Yankees' Aaron Judge, right, celebrates his three-run home run with Giancarlo Stanton (27)...
Associated Press

Stanton to start rehab stint, could rejoin Yankees next week

NEW YORK (AP) — Yankees slugger Giancarlo Stanton is expected to begin a rehab assignment Saturday and could rejoin the AL East leaders in the middle of next week as their designated hitter. Stanton, who hasn’t played since July 23 due to left Achilles tendinitis, worked out again at Yankee Stadium prior to Friday night’s […]
16 hours ago
Cleveland Browns quarterback Deshaun Watson, right, and quarterback Jacoby Brissett talk during an ...
Associated Press

Browns trusting QB Brissett while Watson serves suspension

BEREA, Ohio (AP) — As Jacoby Brissett sat at a nearby table patiently waiting for his turn at the podium Friday, linebacker Jeremiah Owusu-Koramoah wrapped up his interview session with some strong praise for his veteran teammate. During chats sitting in front of their side-by-side lockers, Owusu-Koramoah has learned about life and football from Brissett. […]
16 hours ago
Chicago Cubs' Christopher Morel, right, celebrates with Ian Happ after hitting a two-run home run d...
Associated Press

Morel, Wisdom homer, Cubs top Brewers for 4th straight win

CHICAGO (AP) — Rookie Christopher Morel and Patrick Wisdom each hit a two-run homer and the Chicago Cubs topped the Milwaukee Brewers 8-7 on Friday for their fourth straight win. Morel’s drive down the left-field line in the sixth inning put the Cubs ahead for good in a seesaw game on a warm day with […]
16 hours ago
FILE - Jacksonville Jaguars head coach Urban Meyer stands on the field before an NFL football game ...
Associated Press

Urban Meyer back on Fox’s “Big Noon Saturday” post-NFL

LOS ANGELES (AP) — Urban Meyer is returning to Fox’s “Big Noon Saturday” college football pregame show after his NFL coaching career lasted less than one full season. Fox announced Friday that Meyer would rejoin the show that he was part of in its first two seasons. After resigning as Ohio State’s coach after the […]
16 hours ago
Stephan Nedoroscik, of Penn State, performs on the pommel horse during the 2022 U.S. Gymnastics Cha...
Associated Press

Skepticism and hope as USA Gymnastics enters post-Nassar era

TAMPA, Fla. (AP) — The blue and red flames of the new logo USA Gymnastics unveiled this week are designed to symbolize rebirth. They might as well double as a metaphor for the self-inflicted damage the organization has endured for the better part of a decade. The Larry Nassar sexual abuse scandal shook the sport’s […]
16 hours ago
Van Aert wins Tour stage 4 in style and extends overall lead