Vincenzo Nibali was never going to just defend his yellow jersey in the Pyrenees.
After success in the Vosges and the Alps, the Shark was hungry for more and the Italian champion proved he is in peerless form
with another stunning attack.
His show of strength on stage 17 had set the tone, and Nibali bettered his third place with a stunning ride on the Hautacam.
The Astana man stands to become the first
Tour de France champion since Eddy Merckx to win four stages on his way to the title.
Recount how he sealed victory number four in the full-width photo gallery, courtesy of UCI WorldTour photographer Stefano Sirotti, below.
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The final day in the Pyrenees saw the riders crest the hors categorie Col du Tourmalet and Hautacam, the final two major climbs of this year's race (pic: Sirotti)
Blel Kadri rode alongside Mikel Nieve (Team Sky) as the last remaining riders from the day's break, but Vincenzo Nibali usurped their hopes of a stage win (pic: Sirotti)
Chris Horner tested his legs on the Hautacam, but having being matched for pace by Vincenzo Nibali was soon left trailing in his wake (pic: Sirotti)
Another Shark attack
Vincenzo Nibali had no intention of merely protecting the jersey in the Pyrenees (pic: Sirotti)
Climbing the ladder
Thibaut Pinot and Jean-Christophe Peraud (third wheel) moved into the top three (pic: Sirotti)
Points mean prizes
Rafal Majka was also in the chasing group, doing enough to ensure the polka dot jersey will remain his to Paris (pic: Sirotti)
Alejandro Valverde's desperate chase back on was not enough to stop him dropping off the podium spots with just three stages remaining (pic: Sirotti)
Vincenzo Nibali celebrates stage win number four to leave nobody in any doubt as to who deserved to pull on the yellow jersey this year (pic: Sirotti)
Thibaut Pinot and Jean-Christophe Peraud sandwich Tejay van Garderen as they moved into the podium places to the delight of the home fans (pic: Sirotti)
Top spot of the podium will be reserved for Vincenzo Nibali, barring any disasters in the next three days, however as he extended his commanding overall lead (pic: Sirotti)