Crash enhances Sagan's delight with record-equalling sixth green jersey

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Peter Sagan's delight at winning a record-equalling sixth green jersey at the Tour de France was enhanced by fighting through the additional strain of a heavy crash on stage 17.

Just 24 hours after sealing his place at the top of the points classification, Sagan went off the road when descending the Col de Val Louron-Azet and finished almost half an hour behind stage winner Nairo Quintana.

The world road race champion said he was lucky to escape with just cuts to his right arm and leg and a torn jersey rather than a broken bone, but suggested it added something extra to matching Erik Zabel by finishing in the green jersey for the sixth time.

"I'm so happy to wear the Maillot Vert on the Champs-Elysées for the sixth time. It's such a great feeling, especially after the four very difficult days that followed my crash. It was tough but here I am," Sagan said in a statement on his official website.

The Bora-Hansgrohe rider added: "I'm very proud of my team. They've supported me in all my victories and they've supported me when I was losing, both in the good and in the bad moments.

"I'm very happy of being alive and wearing the green jersey in Paris. I was lucky I didn't break anything when I crashed. My accident happened quite late in the race, so I only had to suffer through one really hard stage.

"I always try to think positive, and the positive side here is I made it to Paris. I fight for the green jersey because [it] is the only chance to stand on the podium in Paris for a rider like me."