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Greipel is King of the Sprints!

Continuing his complete domination of the sprints this TdF, André Greipel took his third stagewin in Valence in impressive style. Jon Degenkolb, Alexander Kristoff and Peter Sagan had no chance of overtaking the clearly fastest man in this race.

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Bryn Lennon/Getty Images

With a course open for many scenarious and the race hitting the Alps next the race start was always going to be hectic. Going uphill from the start a big group of 27 tried to get away but Katusha, hoping to make it a sprint for Kristoff closed that down, only letting a smaller portion of that group to attack and stay away. At the same time a grupetto of struggling riders formed, JC Peraud and Mark Cavendish among them.

The group containing some of the same people who have been active in the latest days never got that much of a leash as Katusha kept working hard to contain it. Pinot, Hesjedal, Sagan, A.Yates, Bak, Trentin, Kwiatkowski, Rogers and Geschke only briefly saw a gap of 3 minutes. By the time the race passed the Cat 2 climb 55 km from the finish the jig was up for the group. Hesjedal and Trentin forged ahead for a while as the rest let themselves fall back to the peloton but going into the finale the race was all together with teams setting themselves up for a sprint in Valence.

In Valence we got to see one of the few traditional sprint leadouts in this race as many teams smelled a chance of victory. Zdenek Stybar took an impressive flyer from just under 3 km out but Lotto-Soudal patiently reeled him in and all the sprinters had a clean run at the line. Despite opening early and having strong riders on his wheel Greipel pounded home the win from the front. Degenkolb had his wheel perfectly but simply could not overtake his countryman and neither could Kristoff whose team had invested heavily in his chances today.

TOP 10 Stage 15

1. GERGREIPEL André 75 LOTTO-SOUDAL 03h 56' 35''
2. GERDEGENKOLB John 81 TEAM GIANT-ALPECIN 03h 56' 35'' + 00' 00''
3. NORKRISTOFF Alexander 96 TEAM KATUSHA 03h 56' 35'' + 00' 00''
4. SVKSAGAN Peter 47 TINKOFF-SAXO 03h 56' 35'' + 00' 00''
5. NORBOASSON HAGEN Edvald 211 MTN-QHUBEKA 03h 56' 35'' + 00' 00''
6. LTUNAVARDAUSKAS Ramunas 168 TEAM CANNONDALE-GARMIN 03h 56' 35'' + 00' 00''
7. FRALAPORTE Christophe 173 COFIDIS, SOLUTIONS CREDITS 03h 56' 35'' + 00' 00''
8. AUSMATTHEWS Michael 105 ORICA GREENEDGE 03h 56' 35'' + 00' 00''
9. ITACIMOLAI Davide 153 LAMPRE - MERIDA 03h 56' 35'' + 00' 00''
10. FRAVACHON Florian 209 BRETAGNE - SECHE ENVIRONNEMENT 03h 56' 35'' + 00' 00''

TOP 10 General Classification

1. GBRFROOME Christopher 31 TEAM SKY 59h 58' 54''
2. COLQUINTANA ROJAS Nairo Alexander 51 MOVISTAR TEAM 60h 02' 04'' + 03' 10''
3. USAVAN GARDEREN Tejay 61 BMC RACING TEAM 60h 02' 26'' + 03' 32''
4. ESPVALVERDE BELMONTE Alejandro 59 MOVISTAR TEAM 60h 02' 56'' + 04' 02''
5. ESPCONTADOR Alberto 41 TINKOFF-SAXO 60h 03' 17'' + 04' 23''
6. GBRTHOMAS Geraint 39 TEAM SKY 60h 03' 48'' + 04' 54''
7. NEDGESINK Robert 131 TEAM LOTTO NL - JUMBO 60h 05' 17'' + 06' 23''
8. ITANIBALI Vincenzo 1 ASTANA PRO TEAM 60h 07' 11'' + 08' 17''
9. FRAGALLOPIN Tony 71 LOTTO-SOUDAL 60h 07' 17'' + 08' 23''
10. NEDMOLLEMA Bauke 141 TREK FACTORY RACING 60h 07' 47'' + 08' 53''