Is this the most beautiful bike race in the world?

Day five of the Mavic Trans-Provence has just finished in the Hautes Alps and in this highlights vid we get to see Matti Lehikoinen take on a special stage without his rear tyre.

There’s only one day left to go in this epic race and things are starting to feel like they’re winding up. The riders got their first glimpse of the Mediterranean sea and there were two assisted transitions giving the riders plenty of time to rest up.

That’s not to say it was a boring day however. The riders enjoyed 4,000 metres of descending (that’s nearly a whole Mont Blanc) and Matti Lehikoinen even completed one stage without a rear tyre. He reckons he was riding for a full five minutes before his rim finally gave way.

The amazing videos don't stop coming (Needham)

The amazing videos don’t stop coming (Needham)

Yet again, Nico Lau dominated for Cube. He’s certainly found his groove in southern France, this is the third day in a row he has won. His lead in the overall classification is an almost unsurmountable four minutes. Barring any mechanical nightmares, he should have the title sewn up tomorrow.

This year the race has attracted top British racers such as Tracey Moseley, Mark Scott and Joe Barnes, all hoping to take the Trans-Provence crown.

The Trans-Provence runs for 270 km from Embrun in the Alps to Menton near Monte Carlo. In five days it takes in over 9,000 metres of climbing and an almighty 18,000 metres of descending, that’s the same as two and a half Mount Everests.

In the day four video you can see the riders struggle with exposed scree slopes.