Julian Alaphilippe remains on the podium ahead of the week’s only summit finish.
Gstaad returned to the Tour de Suisse as the finish of a stage after three years, and just like on the previous visit, a breakaway prevailed. It wasn’t easy for a group to get away Wednesday afternoon, when many riders tried to make the day’s move, and after an initial four-man group was clawed back, four other men succeeded in forming a break. Working well together, they managed to carve out a gap of seven minutes with 80 kilometers to go, at which point it became pretty clear they would make it, especially as the heavy rain and slippery roads made the peloton unwilling to properly chase the attackers.
Not even the Saanenmöser Pass could change anything, as the quartet continued to soldier on, before the escapees finally showed their cards on the descent. The attacks, however, didn’t make a difference, and the leaders battled it out in a sprint, where Stefan Bissegger (EF Education) came from behind and swept past his opponents to take the victory on stage 4.
Surrounded by his Deceuninck – Quick-Step teammates, Julian Alaphilippe came home with the peloton, which arrived around five minutes behind the winner. The World Champion continues to sit second in the general classification, which should witness a serious shake-up Thursday, when the peloton will tackle three first-category climbs.
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