Monday, 20 November, 2017

Froome reclaims yellow jersey

He looks like an old man- shocking impact of Dan Martin's back injury Cycling > Tour de FranceVIDEO- Tour de France 2017'He looks like an old man- shocking impact of Dan Martin's back injury
Saul Franklin | 17 July, 2017, 20:45

Astana rider Fabio Aru admitted he had been caught out of position as he lost the yellow jersey to Froome on Saturday.

Riders from all corners of the general classification will be timing their surges on the lead with less than a week now left on the Tour, and Monday's rest gives competitors all the more reason to chase the win in stage 15. "Because I don't think there's too many opportunities for the GC guys to really make a difference, so when they do make a difference it will be a big one".

Froome who now found himself 45 seconds adrift of the group comprising the overall contenders, including his team mate Mikel Landa. I had to, I had no option.

Froome's back wheel punctured just before the final climb of the 117.7-mile stage that ended in Le Puy-en-Velay.

"I heard that Froome was abused at times. I wasn't sure if I'd get back on again", Froome said afterwards.

"I am feeling better and better as the race goes on". I can't blame them. Expect them to ride at the front in the mountains and to set a punishingly fast tempo - all created to prevent others from attacking. "I came in with the least amount of race days ever coming into a Tour de France". But the French have been [going] so well [with] the stage wins and Bardet fighting for the win.

"Crisis adverted? I think so, but I wouldn't say crisis".

Froome has also showed great composure and calm when in trouble.

The Tour de France is the world's biggest and most iconic cycling race.

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In Mollema's wake came a peloton in tatters. Porte and Ireland's Dan Martin told him to slow down, which he eventually did, and Froome got back on the pace, not without a gesture of annoyance.

Under pressure: Chris Froome survived a tough day in the saddle. Kittel still has a 79-point advantage (373 to 294) but it's narrowing.

Mollema, a top-10 finisher at the Tours of 2013, 2014 and 2015, sped away on the descent from the Peyra Taillade climb and endured over the last 30 kilometers (20 miles) in front of a group of four riders who laid chase.

Despite riding in support of Chris Froome, Landa has been impressive in mountain stages and was stronger than Froome last week in the Pyrenees when the Team Sky leader struggled in the ascent to Peyragudes.

The outcome saw Froome retain his overnight overall lead on Aru and Bardet of 18s and 23s respectively.

He added of Sunday's stage: "It will be all hands on deck because it will be a war". Porte fractured a hip and a collarbone, while Martin, though hurt, was able to continue despite losing time on the leaders. "There were attacks, people tried to attack me several times but I responded every time". I've worked for it so hard. "I thought if I got a gap it would be hard to get back so I took the opportunity".

"It was nearly as if I had to attack just to get back to the front group".

"I rode aggressively but maybe a bit recklessly". It's still only a bike race and that's why I'm racing it like any other race. "They are not [as] wary of me, but I am closer now".

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