La Montagne de Lure - Australia's Team Sky rider Richie Porte broke clear to win the fifth stage of the Paris-Nice race at the mountaintop finish on La Montagne de Lure on Friday and seize the overall lead.
Porte attacked on the final kilometre of the 176km ride from Chateauneauf-du-Pape to finish 26 seconds ahead of Russian veteran Denis Menchov, with Andrew Talansky of the USA in third.
Talansky had tried to make an attack of his own inside the final three kilometres, but was soon overtaken by Porte at the finish line, at an altitude of 1600 metres, approached.
He loses the overall leader's yellow jersey to Porte in the process.
Porte is now 32 seconds ahead of Talansky in the general classification, with Dutchman Lieuwe Westra a further 10 seconds back.
Porte's successful day was in stark contrast to that of his compatriot, Simon Gerrans, who did not start the stage due to breathing problems.
Saturday's penultimate stage is a 220km ride from Manosque to Nice.
Results from the fifth stage of Paris-Nice, a 176km ride from Chateauneuf-du-Pape to Montagne de Lure on Friday:
1. Richie Porte (AUS/Sky) 4hr 50min 54sec, 2. Denis Menchov (RUS/KAT) at 26sec, 3. Andrew Talansky (USA/GRM) 33, 4. Tejay Van Garderen (USA/BMC) same time, 5. Diego Ulissi (ITA/LAM) s.t., 6. Lieuwe Westra (NED/VAC) s.t., 7. Jean-Christophe Peraud (FRA/ALM) s.t., 8. Nairo Quintana (COL/MOV) s.t., 9. Simon Spilak (SLO/KAT) s.t., 10. Michele Scarponi (ITA/LAM) s.t.
1. Richie Porte (AUS/SKY) 24hr 26min 08sec, 2. Andrew Talansky (USA/GRM) at 32sec, 3. Lieuwe Westra (NED/VAC) 42, 4. Jean-Christophe Peraud (FRA/ALM) 49, 5. Tejay Van Garderen (USA/BMC) 52, 6. Sylvain Chavanel (FRA/OPQ) 53, 7. Simon Spilak (SLO/KAT) same time, 8. Diego Ulissi (ITA/LAM) 54, 9. Michele Scarponi (ITA/LAM) s.t., 10. Peter Velits (SVK/OPQ) 56