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Frigo preserves Tour lead

Italy's Lombardi licked the opposition on Friday

(Keystone)

Italian cyclists continued to impress on day four of the Tour de Romandie with Giovanni Lombardi grabbing the stage victory and Dario Frigo holding on to the overall lead.

Once again the riders faced miserable weather conditions as they raced their way along 180 kilometres of soaking Swiss tarmac from Prigny to Siders. Lombardi at least had something to smile about, though, snatching the day's honours in a sprint finish.

Frigo, who is bidding to defend the title which he won in western Switzerland last year, crossed the line in the same time as Lombardi to make sure of the leader's yellow jersey going into Saturday's mountain stage which takes the riders from Sierre to Leysin.

Switzerland's Alexandre Moos remains the best hope for a home victory on this year's Tour. The Phonak team rider finished Thursday's stage five seconds behind the leading pack to hold on to second place overall.

The Swiss rider now has 16 seconds to make up on Frigo with former leader Rik Verbrugghe of Belgium a further two seconds behind.

swissinfo with agencies

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