Rabobank’s Luis Leon Sanchez took his second stage win in as many days in this year’s Tour de Romandie to snatch the yellow jersey away from Team Sky’s Bradley Wiggins.
Wiggins finished safely within the bunch but, having only led the Spaniard by one second at the start of the day, Sanchez now leads the GC by virtue of the 10-second bonus he gained for winning the stage.
Nonetheless, the Brit will start tomorrow’s final day 16.5km time trial at Crans Montana as the favourite. Wiggins trails Sanchez by a slender nine seconds, but notably beat the Rabobank rider by 2-27 in the Col d’Eze time trial in last month’s Paris-Nice.
Meanwhile, his team-mates Mark Cavendish and Geraint Thomas both retired from the race during the stage having worked hard for the race leader over the past two days. Both are short of road racing right now, but will spearhead Sky’s Brit-heavy attack at the Giro d’Italia, which starts a week today.
Tour de Romandie 2012 stage four: Bulle to Sion
1. Luis Leon Sanchez (Spa) Rabobank 184km in 4-56-13
2. Rinaldo Nocentini (Ita) Ag2r-La Mondiale
3. Branisalu Samoilau (Blr) Movistar
4. Gorka Verdugo (Spa) Euskaltel-Euskadi
5. Paolo Tirralongo (Ita) Astana
6. Pierre Rolland (Fra) Europcar
7. Andreas Kloden (Ger) RadioShack-Nissan
8. Cadel Evans (Aus) BMC
9. Roman Kreuziger (Cze) Astana
10. Fabrice Jeandesboz (Saur-Sojasun) all at st.
General classification after stage four
1. Luis Leon Sanchez (Spa) Rabobank in 17-36-35
2. Bradley Wiggins (GBr) Team Sky at 9 sec
3. Michael Rogers (Aus) Team Sky at 16 sec
4. Bauke Mollema (Ned) Rabobank at 18 sec
5. Stef Clement (Ned) Rabobank at st.
6. Andrew Talansky (USA) Garmin-Barracuda at 20 sec
7. Wilco Kelderman (Ned) Rabobank at st.
8. Simon Spilak (Slo) Katusa at 21 sec
9. Rui Costa (Por) Movistar at 22 sec
10. Tiago Machado (Por) RadioShack-Nissan-Trek at st.
Michael Rogers leads Bradley Wiggins
Luis Leon Sanchez takes his second consecutive stage win
Luis Leon Sanchez moves into race lead
Tour de Romandie 2012: Related links
Stage three: Sanchez cuts Wiggins’s lead
Stage two: Hivert breaks Sky winning run at Romandie
Stage one: Wiggins makes it two out of two for Sky in Romandie
Prologue: Geraint Thomas wins Tour de Romandie prologue
Tour de Romandie 2012: Coverage index