Wow! Just wow! Today Chris Froome showed why he is a race favorite and did he deliver. Team Sky’s Geraint Thomas and Richie Porte finished off the work done by the rest of the team to set Froome up beautifully allowing the Sky leader to attack Nario Quintana (Movistar) with about 6km to go.
He continued the savage pace right to the finish of the klim and in the process put 1m04 into Quintana. Team Sky’s Richie Porte recovered from his effort setting Froome up to overtake Quintana jsut before the finish line to make it a 1-2 for Sky.
Other Tour favorites’ challenge melted away on the slopes of the final climb. Tejay Van Garderen lost 2m30, Contador 2m51 and Nibali a whopping 4m25!
- It’s Bastille Day and after a well-earned rest day in PAU yesterday, Le Tour travelled 167 km into the great Pyrénées, for the first mountain stage with an unprecedented finish.
- A simple annihilation and demolition took place today, as Chris Froom (SKY) and teammate Richie Porte (SKY) were simply unbelievable, as they dominated the stage.
- With 15.2 km remaining at the start of the final mountain climb, the gap between the chasing peloton and the leading 2 riders stood at 2 min 29 seconds. The Movistar team moved to the front, setting an unbelievable pace to chase down and set up an attack for their leaders Quintana (MOV) and Valverde (MOV). The intense pace destroyed many riders’ chances…as the first mountain stage after the rest day. At 11.5 km to go, the leading rider was caught – a gap of 159 seconds closed in just 3.7 km illustrating just how fast the peloton closed the gap.
- “Vroom” Froome (SKY) made his winning attack with just over 5 km to go, the pace was incredible. He also earned 50 more King of the Mountain points and the Maillot à Pois. On present form, he certainly looks on track to win his second Tour de France title.
- Dutchman Robert Gesink (TLJ) also impressed today with his great attack at approximately 10 km to go.
- André Greipel regained the jersey from Peter Sagan as an interesting battle for the Green Jersey unfolds.
Day in data:
- 1314 m – the altitude the riders had to climb on today’s stage – from the start at Tarbes (13th time stage town) at an altitude of 296 m, to the finish at La Pierre-Saint-Martin (1st time stage town) at 1610 m.
- 10.8% – steepest gradient on the climb up Col de Soudet, part of the extremely demanding final 15.3 km climb towards the finish in the family-friendly ski resort of La Pierre-Saint-Martin.
- 1342 m – depth of the immense underground chasm, beneath La-Pierre-Saint-Martin, one of the most impressive in the world and very well known to cavers and geologists.
- 2005 – when the last time a Frenchman won a Tour de France Stage on Bastille Day, David Moncoutié won the stage exactly ten years ago, on the occasion of France’s national day.
- 53 – the total number of Maillot à Pois points available today, including 50 for the stage winner, for 1st place in the hors catégorie climb to the finish on the summit of La Pierre-Saint-Martin.
- 15.3 km at 7.4% – distance and average gradient of the hors catégorie climb of La Pierre-Saint-Martin to the stage finish at km 167.
- Distance and average gradients of the 3 category 4 climbs on the stage:
- – 1.4 km at 6.2% – climb of Côte de Bougarber at km 66
- – 1.7 km at 5.9% – climb of Côte de Vielleségure at km 90
- – 1.8 km at 6.3% – climb of Côte de Montory at km 134
- 3 KOM points – earned by van Bilsen (COF) for winning all 3 category 4 climbs today.
- 22.44 km/h – the fastest up La Pierre-Saint-Martin, Chris Froome (SKY).
- 33.06 km/h – speed of Intermediate sprint winner, Pierrick Fedrigo (BSE) at the checkpoint.
- 64.67 km/h – top speed on the stage by André Greipel (LTS), Mark Cavendish (EQS), and John Degenkolb (TGA) at km 123.75.
- 14’ 28” – the time gap between the first and last rider.
- 183 – the number of riders who started today’s stage.
- 1510.8 km – total distance the riders have travelled from Utrecht.
GBR | Chris Froome | SKY
Stage time: 04h 22′ 07″
Average speed: 38.23 km/h
You can view Froome’s (SKY) speed profile, of his climb up La Pierre-Saint-Martin to win Stage 10 @letourdata. Click here
Tomorrow the riders will tackle the second mountain stage of this year’s edition, a 188km route from Pau to Cauterets – Vallée de Saint-Savin. Along the way there are 6 catagorised climbs including the Col du Tourmalet (at 2 115 m) the 17.1 kilometre-long climb which averages 7.3%. The stage will finish with the catagory 3 climb, Côte de Cauterets which is a 6.4 kilometre long climb averaging 5%.
Although Froome is in a commanding lead his rivals will most probably give him, and Team Sky, a run for their money. Perhaps today’s display of dominace will have to be paid back and that day may be tomorrow.
But, tomorrow is another day and the question is, will Froome attack again or will he and Team Sky be happy for a small break to go and take the win?