ST JEAN DE MAURIENNE, France (Reuters) – A year after three Frenchmen raised local hopes in the Tour de France, the home nation’s chances of another podium finish in Paris vanished early this year and Romain Bardet believes it is too soon to dream again.
Bardet, who won the 18th stage in style on Thursday, was sixth overall last year with his AG2r-La Mondiale team mate Jean-Christophe Peraud in second and Thibaut Pinot of FDJ in third.
PRA LOUP, France (Reuters) – With only three competitive stages left in the Tour de France, Chris Froome believes his rivals are going to take an all-or-nothing approach to the race.
The Briton retained the overall leader’s yellow jersey after holding off his main rival, Colombian Nairo Quintana, on Wednesday’s 17th stage, while Alberto Contador lost a big chunk of time and Tejay van Garderen abandoned the race.
PRA LOUP, France (Reuters) – Chris Froome emerged unscathed from a treacherous 17th stage of the Tour de France on Wednesday, retaining his lead while Alberto Contador lost a lot of ground and Tejay van Garderen abandoned the race.
American Van Garderen, who was third overall at the start of the 161-km trek from Digne les Bains, pulled out because of sickness with the day’s laurels going to German Simon Geschke after a brave solo raid.
GAP, France (Reuters) – Trailing leader Chris Froome by over four minutes has done nothing to quell Alberto Contador’s ambition to become the first man in 17 years to complete the Giro d’Italia-Tour de France double.
The Spaniard, bidding to emulate the late Marco Pantani’s 1998 double, is currently fifth in the overall standings and trails yellow jersey holder Froome by 4:23 after looking well below his best in the Pyrenees.
GAP, France (Reuters) – Team Sky released some of Chris Froome’s power data on Tuesday as they seek to put to bed doping suspicions ahead of four gruelling Tour de France stages in the Alps.
Froome’s humiliation of his rivals in the first mountain stage a week ago raised questions and a French doctor of physiology suggested on French TV that the Briton’s estimated power output could only been associated with riders who had relied on banned substances in the past.
GAP, France (Reuters) – Chris Froome was reminded just how quickly the Tour de France title could slip from his grip as his Sky team mate Geraint Thomas suffered a freak crash in Monday’s 16th stage.
The day’s laurels went to Spaniard Ruben Plaza Molina although the action was way behind as Froome’s key lieutenant Thomas was sent flying off the road.
BOURG DE PEAGE, France (Reuters) – Team Sky are planning to release part of yellow jersey wearer Chris Froome’s data as they seek to end doping suspicions surrounding the Tour de France leader.
Froome attracted some negative headlines when he destroyed his rivals in the first mountain stage of the Tour last Tuesday and Briton had urine thrown at him by an abusive spectator on Saturday as the atmosphere on the roadside turned sour.
VALENCE, France (Reuters) – Top cycling performances should not systematically trigger doping suspicions, Tour de France overall leader Chris Froome said on Sunday.
The Team Sky rider, whose impressive ride up La Pierre St Martin in the first mountain stage raised suspicions just like his 2013 ride up the grueling Mont Ventoux, even had urine thrown at him by a spectator during Saturday’s 14th stage.
VALENCE, France (Reuters) – Andre Greipel confirmed he was the sprint king at this year’s Tour de France when the German outpowered his rivals to win the 15th stage on Friday.
The Lotto-Soudal rider clinched his third stage win on the Tour this year ahead of his compatriot John Degenkolb (Giant-Alpecin), with Norwegian Alexander Kristoff (Katusha) taking third place at the end of a hilly 183km ride from Mende.
MENDE, France (Reuters) – Tour de France director Christian Prudhomme blamed the media for aggression aimed at yellow jersey holder Chris Froome as the Briton’s Team Sky were protected by police before the start of Sunday’s 15th stage.
Froome had urine thrown at him by a spectator on Saturday, four days after his Sky team mate Richie Porte was punched during the first mountain stage of the three-week race.