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Belgium’s Tim Merlier wins Stage 3 of Tour de France

Men wait the start of the Category 2/3 race during the Tour of America’s Dairyland, Monday, June 21, 2021, in Manitowoc, Wis. Man 062121 Tour Of Americas Dairyland Gck 008

Tim Merlier of Belgium won the crash-marred Stage 3 of the Tour de France on Monday as Mathieu van der Poel of the Netherlands retained the yellow jersey in Pontivy.

Merlier and Alpecin-Fenix teammate Jasper Philipsen finished one-two in the 182.9-km ride from Lorient to Pontivy.

“I’m living a dream, I think. After the Giro, I was already very happy, but now to win a stage at the Tour, the biggest race in the world. I can’t believe it,” Merlier said.

Tour de France favorites Geraint Thomas and Primoz Roglic crashed in separate incidents, and Stage 3 favorite Caleb Ewan also went down in the final 150 meters after touching wheels with Merlier. Peter Sagan also hit the deck in that incident.

France’s Nacer Bouhanni finished third, and Italians Davide Ballerini and Sonny Colbrelli finished fourth and fifth, respectively.

Tuesday’s Stage 4 will be contested between Redon and Fougeres. The 21-stage course is scheduled to conclude on July 18.

–Field Level Media