Peter Sagan believes it is “destiny” that he keeps narrowly missing out on stage wins at this year’s Tour de France.
The 24-year-old Slovakian claimed his fourth second place and eighth top five already at the 2014 race by finishing runner-up to Alexander Kristoff on stage 12 on Thursday.
He has only been outside the top ten on three of the 12 stages so far – two of which took place in the high mountains – but despite his remarkable consistency, he is yet to register a victory.
Sagan is frustrated to still be waiting for the fifth Tour stage win of his career, but insists his results have nevertheless been satisfying.
“Another second place - it was fate, but all is well,” Sagan said. “I am OK with my results. Maybe they can be better, but also it is destiny. Second place is still good.”
Sagan finished second, fourth and second on the race’s opening three stages in England, and later went on to become the first man since Charles Pelissier in 1930 to finish in the top five in all of the opening seven stages of a Tour.
The Cannondale rider suspects his versatility and ability to challenge on various parcours could now be working against him.
He added: “Since the first stage I am at the front, so maybe I'm a little more tired than the other sprinters, who spend a little more time more relaxed than me.”
Despite still searching for a win, Sagan’s results have seen him build up a huge lead at the top of the points classification.
He currently has 341 points, 152 in front of second-placed Bryan Coquard and 169 ahead of third-placed Kristoff, and appears certain to win the green jersey for the third year in a row.