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Feb , 2016 – Snow caused the third stage of the Paris-Nice race, led by Australian Michael Matthews, to be cancelled on Wednesday. Weather made the 168km stage from Cusset to the finish in Beaujolais territory at Mont Brouilly dangerous for the riders, who were allowed to climb off their bikes and into team cars.
AFP/Yuzuru Sunada/James Startt/Kåre Dehlie Thorstad
Organizers called a halt to proceedings at a feed zone 75km from the finish, while five riders — Alexey Lutsenko, Laurent Didier, Alexis Gougeard, Jesus Herrada and Thomas De Gendt — had a 3min 30sec lead on the peloton.
Organizers originally envisaged restarting the race 42.5km from Mont Brouilly, although falling snow had also been reported at the finish line.
No time has been recorded for the day’s racing, organizers said. It means Matthews retains his 14sec lead over Dutchman Tom Dumoulin with New Zealander Patrick Bevin third at 19sec. Reigning champion Richie Porte of Australia is 10th at 27sec while two-time Tour de France winner Alberto Contador is 18th at 33sec.
Another of the pre-race favourites, Britain’s Geraint Thomas, is fifth on the same time as Bevin.
Snow in Stage 3
— Movistar Team (@Movistar_Team) March 9, 2016
1. Michael Matthews (Aus) Orica-GreenEdge 9:41:46
2. Tom Dumoulin (Ned) Team Giant-Alpecin 0:00:14
3. Patrick Bevin (NZl) Cannondale Pro Cycling 0:00:19
4. Jon Izaguirre (Spa) Movistar Team
5. Geraint Thomas (GBr) Team Sky
6. Lieuwe Westra (Ned) Astana Pro Team 0:00:24
7. Dries Devenyns (Bel) IAM Cycling 0:00:25
8. Arnaud Demare (Fra) FDJ
9. Rafal Majka (Pol) Tinkoff Team 0:00:27
10. Richie Porte (Aus) BMC Racing Team