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MUR-DE-BRETAGNE, France (AP) - Cadel Evans has won the fourth stage of the Tour de France by a nose after a sprint, with Thor Hushovd retaining the yellow jersey after a rain-doused ride through western Brittany.

Tuesday's 107-mile route from Lorient to Mur-de-Bretagne was mostly flat, but ended with a short, sharp climb favoring those with legs that could muster bursts of speed uphill.

Stage 4 Results
1. Cadel Evans BMC Racing Team - 4:11:39
2. Alberto Contador Velasco Saxo Bank Sungard
3. Alexandre Vinokourov Pro Team Astana
4. Rigoberto Uran Uran Sky Procycling
5. Philippe Gilbert Omega Pharma-Lotto
6. Thor Hushovd Team Garmin-Cervelo
7. Fränk Schleck Leopard Trek
8. Samuel Sanchez Gonzalez Euskaltel-Euskadi
9. Jurgen Van Den Broeck Omega Pharma-Lotto
10. Andreas Klöden Team RadioShack

General classification after Stage 4
1. Thor Hushovd (Nor) Team Garmin-Cervelo 13:58:25
2. Cadel Evans (Aus) BMC Racing Team 0:00:01
3. Fränk Schleck (Lux) Leopard Trek 0:00:04
4. David Millar (GBr) Team Garmin-Cervelo 0:00:08
5. Andreas Klöden (Ger) Team RadioShack 0:00:10
6. Bradley Wiggins (GBr) Sky Procycling
7. Geraint Thomas (GBr) Sky Procycling 0:00:12
8. Edvald Boasson Hagen (Nor) Sky Procycling
9. Andy Schleck (Lux) Leopard Trek
10. Jakob Fuglsang (Den) Leopard Trek

Full results here..

Jersey Standings:
Thor Hushovd
Jose Joaquin Rojas
Cadel Evans
Geraint Thomas

Links to news sites...

"Evans pips Contador in thrilling finish

(CNN) -- Australian Cadel Evans edged out defending champion Alberto Contador in a thrilling finish to Tuesday's 172.5km fourth stage of the Tour de France from Lorient to Mur-de-Bretagne.

Evans, twice a Tour runner-up, and Spaniard Contador were separated by the narrowest of margins at the summit of the steep 2km ascent to the line which ended a relatively uneventful stage, with Alexandre Vinokourov back in third.

Pre-stage favorite Philippe Gilbert, who had won Saturday's opening stage, which featured a similar uphill drag to the line, was unable to repeat that performance, finishing fifth in the sprint to the line, as the top 10 riders all received the same time as Evans." Read more from CNN...

"Evans pips Contador in Tour de France stage four
By Justin Davis (AFP)

MUR-DE-BRETAGNE, France - Two-time runner-up Cadel Evans of BMC held off a late charge from Alberto Contador to claim a prestigious victory on the fourth stage of the Tour de France on Tuesday.
Norwegian Thor Hushovd, tipped to lose the yellow jersey after a brutal two-kilometre finishing climb, held on to the race lead after the 172.5km ride from Lorient to Mur-de-Bretagne.

Reigning world champion Hushovd upset predictions to finish sixth on the stage and keep his 01sec lead on Evans intact ahead of Wednesday's fifth stage to Cap Frehel.

"Everyone wants to take the jersey off me, but I'm going to hold on to it as long as possible," said Hushovd, who took the race lead after his Garmin-Cervelo team won the 23km team time-trial on Sunday.

Belgian champion Philippe Gilbert, who won the opening stage on a similar finish at Mont des Alouettes, was expected for a repeat on his 29th birthday.

But on a finish designed for the 'punchers' who excel in the hilly one-day classics, he could only finish in fifth place as Evans continued his promising start to the race." Read more from the AFP...

"Evans claims stage four from Contador

Cadel Evans pipped Alberto Contador to claim stage four of the Tour de France following an uphill finish at Mur-de-Bretagne.

The Australian rider from BMC edged out the defending champion by the narrowest of margins at the summit of the 2km category three ascent that completed the 172.5km stage from Lorient.

Norway's Thor Hushovd (Garmin-Cervelo) was sixth to hang on to the leader's yellow jersey by one second from Evans.

Contador attacked on the first half of the punchy climb - known as the "Breton Alpe d'Huez" due to its 10 per cent early gradient - and managed to gain eight seconds back on GC rival Andy Schleck (Leopard Trek) who finished 23rd." Read more from Yahoo/Eurosport...

Photos by CorVos