Cycling - Routley wins stage, Wiggins retains lead in California

Canadian Will Routley out-sprinted five breakaway companions to win stage four of the Tour of California in Cambria, as Briton Bradley Wiggins retained his overall race lead for a third day.

Cycling - Routley wins stage, Wiggins retains lead in California

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Sir Bradley Wiggins is kissed by the flower girls after being given the yellow jersey following stage four of the 2014 Amgen Tour of California (AFP)

Routley finished the 103-mile stage from Monterey in three hours, 48 minutes and 37 seconds to take line honours ahead of second-placed American Gregory Daniel and Kevin De Mesmaeker of Belgium.

The 2012 Tour de France champion Wiggins completed the stage 77 seconds behind Routley, but increased his overall lead to 28 seconds over Australian Rohan Dennis.

Six riders jumped loose of the peloton early in the stage and Routley defended his climber's jersey by taking top points from the final two categorised climbs.

To the surprise of many, he also had enough left to unleash a race-winning sprint to the line, flying down the right side of the road to win a career-first stage in California.

The tour continues Thursday with a 107-mile stage from Pismo Beach to Santa Barbara. 

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