Wout van Aert puts in commanding performance to win stage four time trial at Paris-Nice as Jumbo-Visma take 1-2-3 again

Belgian now in race lead after reshuffle in the general classification

Wout van Aert
(Image credit: Getty Images)

Wout van Aert (Jumbo-Visma) powered to victory in Montluçon, producing a commanding position in the time trial to take the lead in the general classification.

Jumbo-Visma once again dominated the podium, as the Belgian was followed by his teammates Primož Roglič and Rohan Dennis at the end of the 13.4km effort.

Van Aert averaged over 49km/h during his 16 minute, 20 second time, which saw him leapfrog Christophe Laporte (Jumbo-Visma) to take control of the yellow jersey.

Laporte remains in third on the general classification, while an impressive performance from Simon Yates (BikeExchange-Jayco) saw the Briton move up to fourth overall.

Other standout rides came from Mads Pedersen (Trek-Segafredo), who hung onto his top-ten position, and Pierre Latour (TotalEnergies), with the GC rider looking to be back to his best.

Among those aiming for the overall who would be less impressed with their efforts were Jack Haig (Bahrain-Victorious), who lost 1:07 to Van Aert, and Quintana, who lost 1:17.

How it happened

The week's time trial came on stage four, and was set to shake up the top of a general classification that was populated by mostly punchy riders.

Dmitriy Gruzdev (Astana-Qazaqstan) was first out of the start house, but the first TT specialist to show his power was Rohan Dennis (Jumbo-Visma), who averaged 48.924 km/h over the 13.4km course.

The two-time former world champion showed his skill in the testing course, which ramped up at the end with gradients of up to 15%. It is the second time trial of the year after he won the Australian national championships in January.

The first rider to come close to his time was Ethan Hayter (Ineos Grenadiers), who finished 18 seconds behind at the end. Stefan Küng (Groupama-FDJ) was next to tackle the Australian's benchmark, coming in just four seconds down at the finish.

Simon Yates (BikeExchange-Jayco) was a surprise leader at the first checkpoint, as he beat Dennis' time by four seconds, however by the finish the British rider was five seconds behind, proving how difficult the second part of the course was.

At the finish Yates said that he was "pretty happy with that" and that it was the "best TT I've done in a while".

Many of the favourites were stacked towards the end of the day, with Olympic time trial champion Primož Roglič (Jumbo-Visma) and Wout van Aert (Jumbo-Visma) coming late on. At the first time check Roglič was just two seconds behind Dennis and Van Aert was two seconds ahead.

Meanwhile, starting at finishing last was yellow jersey Christophe Laporte (Jumbo-Visma), who had dropped a few seconds over the first 7km. However, given his teammate Dennis was in the hot seat and Roglič and Van Aert were performing so well, he was riding with little pressure.

Roglič briefly took the lead, going four seconds quicker than Dennis at the finish, before Van Aert stormed up the final climb, going another two seconds quicker.

Laporte could not hold onto the yellow jersey, losing 29 seconds by the finish, but only just finished outside the top ten on an excellent day for Jumbo-Visma.

The Dutch team have their second podium lockout of the week after they finished one-two-three on stage one on Sunday as well.

Results: Paris-Nice 2022, stage four (13.4km)

1. Wout van Aert (Bel) Jumbo-Visma, in 16-20
2. Primož Roglič (Sln) Jumbo-Visma, at 2s
3. Rohan Dennis (Aus) Jumbo-Visma, at 6s
4. Stefan Küng (Sui) Groupama-FDJ, at 10s
5. Simon Yates (GBr) BikeExchange-Jayco, at 11s
6. Ethan Hayter (GBr) Ineos Grenadiers, at 14s
7. Pierre Latour (Fra) TotalEnergies, at 19s
8. Stefan Bissegger (Sui) EF Education-EasyPost, at 21s
9. Mads Pedersen (Den) Trek-Segafredo, at 25s
10. Dani Martínez (Col) Ineos Grenadiers, at 28s

GENERAL CLASSIFICATION AFTER STAGE Four

1. Wout van Aert (Bel) Jumbo-Visma, in 11-51-05
2. Primož Roglič (Slo) Jumbo-Visma, at 10s
3. Christophe Laporte (Bel) Jumbo-Visma, at 28s
4. Simon Yates (GBr) BikeExchange-Jayco, at 49s
5. Pierre Latour (Fra) TotalEnergies, at 51s
6. Mads Pedersen (Den) Trek-Segafredo, at 53s
7. Dani Martínez (Col) Ineos Grenadiers, at 1-06
8. Aleksandr Vlasov (Rus) Bora-Hansgrohe, at 1-09
9. Stefan Bissegger (Sui) EF Education-EasyPost, at 1-13
10. Søren Kragh Andersen (Den) Team DSM, at 1-19

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