To access this article REGISTER NOWWould you like print copies, app and digital replica access too? SUBSCRIBE for as little as £5 per week. Would you like to read more?Register for free to finish this article.Sign up now for the following benefits:Four FREE articles of your choice per monthBreaking news, comment and analysis from industry experts as it happensChoose from our portfolio of email newsletters
CARCASSONNE, France, (Reuters) – Denmark’s Magnus Cort Nielsen claimed victory on the Tour de France when he prevailed in a three-man sprint at the end of a long breakaway in the 15th stage yesterday. The Astana rider was the overwhelming favourite as a sprint specialist in the finale and he duly delivered, comfortably beating Spain’s Ion Izagirre and Dutchman Bauke Mollema, who were second and third, respectively.It is Cort Nielsen’s third grand tour win after he won two stages in the Vuelta a Espana in 2016, and Astana’s second in this year’s Tour after Omar Fraile won Saturday’s 14th stage.“Everything went very well … it’s the best victory of my career,” said Cort Nielsen. “I was feeling good in the finale and felt confident. I did exactly what I wanted to do in terms of strategy.”Briton Geraint Thomas retained the overall lead after a 181.5-km hilly ride from Millau through the vineyards of Minervois, Corbieres and Cabardes in Southwestern France.He leads Team Sky team mate and defending champion Chris Froome by 1:39 and Dutchman Tom Dumoulin by 1:50 before today’s rest day as the race heads to the Pyrenees. A 29-man breakaway took shape early on, and after they had built an advantage of more than 10 minutes to make sure the win would be decided between them, the fireworks started. Tour debutants Fabien Grellier and Julien Bernard, the son of Jean-Francois, third overall in the 1987 race, attacked with 70 kilometres left.But Poland’s Rafal Majka, who has three Tour stage wins to his name, jumped away from the group and chased the duo down, whizzing past them to reach the top of the Pic de Nore, a 12.3-km climb at an average gradient of 6.3 percent, in first position.He had a 30-second lead, but with a flat, crosswind-exposed stretch leading to the line, his chances were slim and he was caught by a group of seven chasers. France’s Lilian Calmejane, in his home region, had no team mate in the group unlike Cort Nielsen, Mollema and Izagirre. He was isolated when things heated up and had to concede defeat, breaking down in tears after crossing the line in seventh place, 34 seconds off the pace.The peloton crossed the line 13:11 behind.France’s Romain Bardet, fifth overall, attacked in the descent from the Pic de Nore and went off the road, in a desperate attempt to unsettle his rivals. “That was crazy,” said Thomas.
Here are this weekend’s picks as The Morning Reaction will pick every NFL game as well as local college football contests this season. And as a special treat, they pick their respective high schools’ games.Drew Forrester finished 11-2 last week while Luke Jones was 8-5 in Week 8. Forrester is 81-35 through eight weeks and Jones is 76-40 overall. Official standings are only kept based on the NFL picks.(Editor’s note: Drew and Luke each correctly picked San Diego to beat Kansas City on Thursday night.)To hear their full explanations, click HERE.Ravens at Browns: Baltimore 22-13 (Drew), Baltimore 23-20 (Luke)Broncos at Bengals: Cincinnati 23-20 (Drew), Denver 27-21 (Luke)Cardinals at Packers: Green Bay 28-10 (Drew), Green Bay 31-17 (Luke)Dolphins at Colts: Indianapolis 24-20 (Drew), Miami 21-20 (Luke)Bills at Texans: Houston 27-20 (Drew), Houston 31-14 (Luke)Panthers at Redskins: Washington 21-9 (Drew), Washington 27-20 (Luke)Lions at Jaguars: Jacksonville 19-17 (Drew), Detroit 24-16 (Luke)Bears at Titans: Chicago 20-13 (Drew), Chicago 24-17 (Luke)Vikings at Seahawks: Seattle 30-13 (Drew), Seattle 27-21 (Luke)Buccaneers at Raiders: Oakland 21-6 (Drew), Oakland 17-16 (Luke)Steelers at Giants: New York 40-27 (Drew), New York 27-19 (Luke)Cowboys at Falcons: Dallas 24-21 (Drew), Atlanta 31-20 (Luke)Eagles at Saints: New Orleans 34-24 (Drew), New Orleans 24-20 (Luke)Georgia Tech at Maryland: Yellow Jackets 48-10 (Drew), Yellow Jackets 16-13 (Luke)Towson at Delaware: Tigers 38-30 (Drew), Tigers 34-27 (Luke)Florida Atlantic at Navy: Midshipmen 30-10 (Drew), Midshipmen 27-13 (Luke)Bethune-Cookman at Morgan State: Bears 50-16 (Drew), Wildcats 27-13 (Luke)Glen Burnie at Annapolis: Panthers 33-8 (Drew), Panthers 14-13 (Luke)Susquehannock at Dover: Eagles 40-17 (Drew), Warriors 20-13 (Luke)