Majka wins Stage 14, Nibali tightens grip on yellow jersey

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Updated: 7/19/2014 11:15 am

Risoul, France ( - Poland's Rafal Majka won Stage 14 of the Tour de France on Saturday, while Italian Vincenzo Nibali increased his overall lead in cycling's most prestigious race.

Majka, who was the runner-up to Nibali in the previous stage, completed the 177-kilometer trek on the second day of grueling Alpine climbs in a time of 5 hours, 8 minutes and 27 seconds to claim his first stage victory.

"This is my first pro victory. I was always coming second, third, etc. I needed to win some big stage at the Tour de France," Majka said.

Nibali tightened his grip on the yellow jersey, adding a minute to his overall lead. He is now 4:37 ahead of Spain's Alejandro Valverde, with Frenchman Romain Bardet another 13 seconds back.

"From the team car, I was told, 'If you still have something in the tank, go for it'. I was looking at gaining some time over Alejandro Valverde. I heard that he cracked after I left him," Nibali said.

France's Thibaut Pinot is 5:06 off the pace, while American Tejay Van Garderen is 5:49 behind Nibali in fifth.

Saturday's ride began in Grenoble and ended with an ascension to Montee de Risoul. Majka, a Tour rookie, attacked on the final climb and finished 24 seconds ahead of Nibali.

Stage 14 also saw riders go up and over the punishing Col d'Izoard, the highest point on this year's race.

Sunday's Stage 15 from Tallard to Nimes covers 222 kilometers and is relatively flat.


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