Tour de France – Elia Viviani completes set after edging sprint finish in Nancy

Elia Viviani claimed his first career Tour de France stage win in a sprint finish in Nancy as Deceuninck-Quick Step team-mate Julian Alaphilippe retained the yellow jersey.

Italy's Elia Viviani celebrates as he crosses the finish line to win the fourth stage of the Tour de France. Picture: AP/Christophe Ena

The Italian sprinter, frustrated to leave the Giro d’Italia empty-handed in May, took the first pure sprint opportunity of this year’s Tour as he edged out UAE Team Emirates’ Alexander Kristoff on the line.

It was a second consecutive stage victory for Viviani’s Belgian team after Alaphilippe’s champagne moment in Epernay on Monday powered him into the yellow jersey.

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Several sprinters had targeted Saturday’s opening stage in Brussels but an uphill drag to the finish line proved too much for the pure quickmen.

“It means a lot,” said Viviani, who has won five Giro stages and three Vuelta stages, but was missing one from the biggest race of all. “Probably I can’t believe it still. It was a big goal of the year. We missed the first chance and put the yellow on.

““But I think after Julian’s phenomenal ride yesterday, it’s a moment when you switch on the team.

“Today we did a perfect job, you saw how the lead-out did.

“I’m pretty happy. I was missing this win.

“I won in the Giro and the Vuelta and now in the Tour de France, that means a lot to me.”

Lotto-Soudal’s Caleb Ewan had to settle for third while former world champion Peter Sagan of Bora-Hansgrohe came fourth.

The bunch finish meant there was no change at the top of the general classification, in which Alaphilippe leads by 20 seconds from Jumbo-Visma’s Wout Van Aert.