German Marcel Kittel celebrates after winning Stage 10 of the  Tour de France yesterday. Pic/AFP
German Marcel Kittel celebrates after winning Stage 10 of the  Tour de France yesterday. Pic/AFP

Marcel Kittel was unbeatable in yesterday's sprint finish at the Tour de France, according to the man who took second place. The burly German cantered to a fourth stage win of the Tour at the end of the 178km 10th stage from Perigueux to Bergerac, as Chris Froome retained his overall lead.

Kittel's compatriot John Degenkolb took second, ahead of Dutchman Dylan Groenewegen in third, and then admitted that it wasn't possible to beat his countryman. "When I was going in the last kilometre, I thought the sprint was already over, but then a miracle happened and Marcel overtook me!"

Degenkolb said ironically. "I did a full sprint to stay on his slipstream and that took me to second place. Today he was unbeatable, that's for sure."

The Kittel, 29, was imperious, winning easily as he accelerated from six bodies back to streak several bike lengths clear. "It's true, it's amazing, I can't even tell you how proud I am," said the Quick-Step sprinter. "It's a fourth stage win in 10 days, that's a great achievement for me and the team."

It was the manner of Kittel's victory that was most impressive as he even had time to raise his arms in celebration before crossing the line.

Froome kept hold of the race leader's yellow jersey with an 18-second advantage to Italy's Fabio Aru.