Thursday, July 16, 1998 Published at 01:42 GMT 02:42 UK
O'Grady wears the jersey, but Blijlevens wins the stage
Stuart O'Grady savours his Yellow Jersey triumph
The coveted leader's Yellow Jersey has passed to Stuart O'Grady - only the second time in history an Australian has worn it - but Jeroen Blijlevens won the gruelling fourth stage of the Tour de France.
The 24-year-old O'Grady, who is based in Toulouse, said that winning the Yellow Jersey was "my dream since I started cycling".
The only other Australian to win it was Phil Anderson in 1982. O'Grady said it was "very special to be the first since Anderson".
The distance did not put him off. In fact, he said: "I can express myself better over distance."
He avoided a collision involving 10 others at a tight left-hand corner less than 3km from the finish.
Italian Nicola Minali was second and Czech Jan Svorda was third, with most of the rest eight seconds behind thanks to the pile-up.
Meanwhile, the head of the Festina team, Bruno Roussel, and the team's doctor, Eric Rijkaert, have been detained by French police in a continuing investigation into doping charges.
Police also searched the Festina team's hotel.
They arrested the team's masseur Willy Voet before the start of the Tour after he was found carrying 400 bottles of banned drugs while on his way to Ireland.
He said he was acting under orders from the Festina team.
The team's chief Bruno Roussel said on Tuesday he was "stunned" by the allegations, and in a statement he had asked the investigating judge to hear him as quickly as possible.
The director of the Tour de France has again said it would be out of the question to expel the Festina team.
"It would be unfair to the riders," he said.
But GAN's team director, Roger Legeay, who also chairs the association of professional cycling teams, said, "the race has been spoiled" and hoped for early action.
Festina's main sponsors, the Festina watch company, is threatening to break its contract if there is evidence of drug abuse.
Stage five of the Tour de France runs between Chôlet - "city of handkerchiefs" and Châteauroux. At 228.5km it is not as long as Wedesday's run.
Many of the tour's big names are lying well down the pack as the event moves deeper into the French countryside.
Last year's winner Jan Ullrich of Germany has moved up slightly but was still only 26th in this stage and is 22nd overall.
Frenchman and contender for the title Richard Virenque was in 29th position this stage and is 30th overall.