Tour de France - The 160.5-km Stage 6 from Mulhouse to La Planche des Belles Filles

Bahrain-Merida rider Dylan Teuns of Belgium and and Trek-Segafredo rider Giulio Ciccone of Italy in action.

Dylan Teuns of Belgium had a strong showing in the mountains on Thursday and his reward was winning a Tour de France stage for the first time in his career.

Teuns was steady throughout the (99.7 miles) Stage 6 from Mulhouse to La Planche des Belles Filles and finished in four hours, 29 minutes and three seconds to prevail by 11 seconds over Italy’s Giulio Ciccone.

“I didn’t expect it, but today I knew there was a chance, and if the chance came I took it to go into the breakaway and also in the finale I gave everything,” Teuns said afterward.

“In the second-to-last climb I think the four strongest came out of the breakaway, but I was already thinking before that this four guys who came together — maybe one or two more — and then I knew Ciccone was the main guy in the final, and, yeah, I’m so happy I finished it off.”

Ciccone took over possession of the yellow jersey and holds a six-second lead over Julian Alaphilippe of France. Teuns moved up to third place, 32 seconds off the lead. Belgium’s Xandro Meurisse finished in third place in Stage 6, while defending champion Geraint Thomas of Great Britain was fourth.

Thomas is fifth overall, 49 seconds behind Ciccone.

“I felt pretty good,” Thomas said. “I thought it would be more of a solid day. It’s never easy, but it was steady over the first few climbs.”

The (142.9 miles) Stage 7 runs Friday from Belfort to Chalon-sur-Saone.