Mark Cavendish
Cavendish claimed a fourth stage victory in 2016 in stunning fashion.Getty Images

Mark Cavendish claimed his 30th stage win at the Tour de France after blitzing to victory ahead of Alexander Kristoff on stage 14 at Villars-les-Dombes. The Briton had won three of the opening six stages of the race but after being surpassed by Peter Sagan in pursuit of the green jersey he provided a reminder as to his capabilities with another fine display.

Following two stages dominated by controversy and mourning, riders were confronted with a gruelling 208.5km route in which the general classification contenders barely figured. Yellow jersey holder Chris Froome retained his one minute and 47 second lead over Bauke Mollema, with Adam Yates a further two minutes and 45 seconds adrift.

But even Froome's continued success could not detract from Cavendish closing to within four of all-time stage winner Eddy Merckz, who has 34. The Isle of Man rider allowed Marcel Kittel to take up the sprint with 200m to go, before powering past the German to secure victory.

"We knew we had to be there when it narrowed," he said. "It was about jumping the train at the end. I followed Kittel and made sure I stayed there. I saw Quick Step hit out early and knew Kittel would be left out in the front. He kicked off a bit but I was way past him - I think he was just frustrated."