Froome happy to give up yellow jersey
Chris Froome lost his yellow jersey but retained his grip on his rivals after surviving a day on the cobbles in the Tour de France yesterday.
German Tony Martin won the fourth stage with a late attack and snatched the overall lead at the end of a body-punishing 223.5km ride from Seraing, Belgium. Team Sky's Froome was expected to be tested on the seven cobbled sectors that peppered the course but he passed with flying colours.
"Losing the yellow jersey at this stage is no big deal," Froome said. "I was definitely happier to see it go to him (Martin) than any of my GC rivals."
Martin leads Froome by 12 seconds overall with American Tejay van Garderen in third place 25 seconds off the pace. Froome's main general classification rivals, Alberto Contador, Nairo Quintana and defending champion Vincenzo Nibali all finish on the same time yesterday.
Ireland's Dan Martin lost over five and a half minutes after crashing and slips to 35th in the overall standings. Sam Bennett finished almost 17 minutes behind the leaders in 168th place.