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Frenchman Turgis wins stage nine as Pogacar maintains Tour de France lead

French cyclist Anthony Turgis triumphed in stage nine of the Tour de France, breaking away early and holding off the competition on the gravel tracks winding through champagne vineyards. Despite multiple attacks by Tadej Pogacar, the current yellow jersey holder, on the unfamiliar terrain, he was unable to gain time on his main rivals for the overall title.

Turgis, 30, celebrated his victory in Troyes after a prolonged effort in the breakaway, with British rider Tom Pidcock closely following in second place and Derek Gee of Canada finishing third.

“It’s an incredible feeling,” Turgis remarked. “I’ve been striving for a win like this for a long time, and to achieve it here is fantastic.”

While France was engaged in its parliamentary election, hundreds of thousands of cycling enthusiasts lined the Tour route during the holiday weekend. The stage featured 14 rough gravel sections through the renowned champagne vineyards, setting the stage for potential changes in the general classification.

Despite the challenging terrain, Pogacar remained closely matched with his main rivals for the yellow jersey, including Remco Evenepoel of Belgium, who trails by 33 seconds, and defending champion Jonas Vingegaard of Denmark, who sits third at 1 minute and 15 seconds behind.

The stage victory marked a significant moment for Turgis and highlighted the competitive dynamics unfolding among the top contenders as the Tour de France progresses.

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