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World champion has strongest finish from group of 25 contesting finale

Thor Hushovd, who next week defends the world champion's rainbow jersey in Copenhagen, has won Stage 4 of the Tour of Britain in Caerphilly this afternoon. A breakaway group had been caught ahead of the day's final climb of Caerphilly Mountain, and despite a small group of riders including Rapha Condor Sharp's John Tiernan and Team Sky's Steve Cummings trying to get away on that ascent, the race came back together for 25 riders to contest the finale. Lars Boom of Rabobank finished second and retains the overall lead.

After the stage Team Sky's Ben Swift, gave us his thoughts on the day's racing:

"With a hard climb coming inside the final 8km it was always going to be an important stage. The legs were feeling okay and so was the rest of the team.

"We gave it a good go in the finish but it didn’t quite work out."

Sky might not have figured in the stage placings but another solid day's riding saw team leader Geraint Thomas move up to second place overall, 12 seconds down on Lars Boom and two seconds ahead of every headline writer's dream, Boy Van Poppel. Mark Cavendish by contrast had a day to forget, the winner of Stage 1 didn't figure in the battle for the final sprint and slid out of the overall top 10 and dropped to third place in the points classification.

"We are feeling good as a team going into what is possibly the hardest stage of the tour tomorrow," said Swift. As the race passes the half way point there is certainly everything to play for.

Full report to follow

Tour of Britain Stage Four result, Powis Castle, Welshpool to Caerphilly 
1)  Thor Hushovd           (Nor, Garmin Cervelo)         4h 32m 22s
2)  Lars Boom              (Ned, Rabobank)               same time
3)  Cesare Benedetti       (Ita, Team NetApp)            same time
4)  Ian Bibby              (GB, Motorpoint)              same time
5)  Boy Van Poppel         (Ned, UnitedHealthcare)       same time
6)  Jan Barta              (Cze, Team NetApp)            same time
7)  Stijn Neirynck         (Bel, Topsport Vlaanderen)    same time
8)  Leopold Koenig         (Ger, Team NetApp)            same time
9)  Iker Camano            (Spa, Endura Racing)          same time
10) Linus Gerdemann        (Ger, Leopard Trek)           same time

Combativity Award: Kristian House (GB, Rapha Condor Sharp)
 Overall General Classification, after Stage Four 
1)  Lars Boom              (Ned, Rabobank)              12h 36m 51
2)  Geraint Thomas         (GB, Sky Procycling)             @ 0.12
3)  Boy Van Poppel         (Ned, UnitedHealthcare)          @ 0.14
4)  Ian Bibby              (GB, Motorpoint)                 @ 0.19
5)  Linus Gerdemann        (Ger, Leopard Trek)           same time
6)  Daniel Lloyd           (GB, Garmin Cervelo)          same time
7)  Steve Cummings         (GB, Sky Procycling)          same time
8)  Jan-Bert Lindeman      (Ned, Vacansoleil DCM)        same time
9)  Jan Barta              (Cze, Team NetApp)            same time
10) Jelle Wallays          (Bel, Topsport Vlaanderen)    same time

The Prostate Cancer Charity Points Classification, after Stage Four 
1)  Lars Boom              (Ned, Rabobank)                   37pts
2)  Geraint Thomas         (GB, Sky Procycling)              29pts
3)  Mark Cavendish         (GB, HTC Highroad)                26pts
4)  Ian Bibby              (GB, Motorpoint)                  25pts
5)  Thor Hushovd           (Nor, Garmin Cervelo)             15pts
6)  Michael Matthews       (Aus, Rabobank)                   14pts
7)  Mark Renshaw           (Aus, HTC Highroad)               14pts
8)  Linus Gerdemann        (Ger, Leopard Trek)               13pts
9)  Cesare Benedetti       (Ita, Team NetApp)                13pts
10) Steve Cummings         (GB, Sky Procycling)              12pts

Skoda King of the Mountains Classification, after Stage Four 
1)  Russell Hampton        (GB, Sigma Sport - Specialized)   39pts
2)  Jonathan Tiernan Locke (GB, Rapha Condor Sharp)          32pts
3)  Steve Cummings         (GB, Sky Procycling)              21pts
4)  Pieter Ghyllebert      (Bel, AN Post)                    19pts
5)  Jack Bauer             (NZ, Endura Racing)               14pts
  Yodel Sprints Classification, after Stage Four

1)  Pieter Ghyllebert      (Bel, AN Post)                    32pts
2)  Russell Hampton        (GB, Sigma Sport - Specialized)   13pts
3)  Andrew Fenn            (GB, AN Post)                     10pts
4)  Jack Bauer             (NZ, Endura Racing)                9pts
5)  Boy Van Poppel         (Ned, UnitedHealthcare)            8pts
  UNISON Best Young Rider Classification, after Stage Four 
1)  Jan-Bert Lindeman      (Ned, Vacansoleil DCM) 12h 37m 10s
2)  Jelle Wallays          (Bel, Topsport Vlaanderen) same time
3)  Andrew Fenn            (GB, AN Post) @ 0.15
4)  Michael Matthews       (Aus, Rabobank) @ 1.11
5)  Willem Wauters         (Bel, Vacansoleil DCM) @ 5.41

 

Born in Scotland, Simon moved to London aged seven and now lives in the Oxfordshire Cotswolds with his miniature schnauzer, Elodie. He fell in love with cycling one Saturday morning in 1994 while living in Italy when Milan-San Remo went past his front door. A daily cycle commuter in London back before riding to work started to boom, he's been news editor at road.cc since 2009. Handily for work, he speaks French and Italian. He doesn't get to ride his Colnago as often as he'd like, and freely admits he's much more adept at cooking than fettling with bikes.