Demare sprints to fourth win in Giro d'Italia, Almeida holds race lead

Rimini (Italy) (AFP) –

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Frenchman Arnaud Demare powered to his fourth victory in this year's Giro d'Italia, winning stage 11 in the seaside town of Rimini on Wednesday.

The Groupama-FDJ rider won a sprint finish ahead of Tuesday's stage winner Slovak Peter Sagan with Colombian Alvaro Hodeg third.

Portugal's Joao Almeida of Deceuninck finished among the leading group, to hold the overall leader's pink jersey after the 182km run north along the Adriatic coastline from Porto Sant'Elpidio.

The 29-year-old Demare now has 75 career wins, including 14 this season.

He becomes the first French rider since 1982 Giro winner Bernard Hinault to claim four stages on the same race, for five in total, after one last year.

A five-rider breakaway formed after leaving Porto Sant'Elpidio with the last man Belgian Sander Armee not caught until the final 6km.

Thursday's 12th stage covers 204km around Cesenatico, the hometown of Italian cycling great Marco Pantani, who died in 2004, with five climbs in the Romagna hinterland.