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Tour de France | Stage 11 Commentary

17:40 Thomas takes win and race lead: Top 5: 1. Geraint Thomas 2. Tom Dumoulin 3. Chris Froome 4. Damiano Caruso  5. Mikel Nieve Geraint Thomas is the new leader of the Tour de France
17:37 Thomas wins stage 11: Geraint Thomas wins stage 11 solo and takes the yellow jersey.
17:36 Thomas goes: Geraint Thomas speeds up behind Nieve
17:35 Nieve with 1km to go: Nieve still in the lead under the red flame
17:33 2Km to go: Mikel Nieve still in the lead with 2km to go. Dumoulin and Thomas are 20'' behind. Froome and Martin are 35'' behind.
17:31 3km to go: Dumoulin and Thomas are 30'' down on Nieve with 3km to go.
17:29 Thomas rejoins Dumoulin: Geraint Thomas has rejoined Dumoulin. Dan Martin attacks and Froome reacts.
17:28 Bardet attacks, Froome reacts: Bardet attacks behind Thomas. Froome reacts. Bardet tries again.
17:26 Thomas attacks: Thomas attacks with 5.5km to go
17:23 Nieve with 6km to go: Nieve still alone in the lead with 6km to go, 1' ahead of Tom Dumoulin.
17:20 Alejandro Valverde gets the combativity price: Alejandro Valverde has been designated the most combative rider of the day.
17:17 Valverde no longer ahead: Valverde is reeled in by the Team Sky group. Dumoulin is still in between.
17:14 5 in the lead: As Herrada and Navarro make it across, Nieve goes solo with 9km to go.
17:12 Valgren dropped: Astana won at La Rosière with Pello Bilbao at the Critérium du Dauphiné but Michael Valgren has been dropped by Barguil, Nieve and Caruso. The Cofidis duo Herrada-Navarro is trying to bridge the gap to the three leading riders. Valverde and Dumoulin are only 20'' ahead of the peloton led by Team Sky.
17:04 Team Sky ups the tempo: The whole Team Sky strongly leads the peloton in the final climb.
17:03 Barguil, Nieve, Caruso and Valgren in the final climb: Moinard has finished his job. Four riders in the lead with 14km to go: Barguil, Caruso, Nieve and Valgren. The Valverde/Dumoulin group is 2' adrift.
17:00 Dumoulin with Valverde: Alejandro Valverde and Marc Soler have been reinforced by the Sunweb duo: Soren Kragh and Tom Dumoulin. They're 2'20'' behind the leading riders.
16:56 5 in the lead: Five riders in the lead at the bottom of the final climb to La Rosière: Barguil, Moinard, Nieve, Caruso and Valgren.
16:50 Geraint Thomas virtually in the yellow jersey: The peloton gets closer to Valverde and Geraint Thomas is the new virtual leader with 25km to go. Kragh and Dumoulin have gone clear in the downhill.
16:46 Franck has crashed: Mathias Frank has crashed in the downhill. He's OK but no longer at the front
16:41 Valverde virtually in the yellow jersey: In the technical downhill of the Cormet de Roselend, Valverde has been timed with a deficit of 2'. He's virtually in the yellow jersey. He last had the yellow jersey after stage 1 of the Tour de France ten years ago.
16:37 Alaphilippe to retain the polka dot jersey: Mathematically, Julian Alaphilippe is assured of keeping the polka dot jersey at La Rosière.
16:36 Barguil first at Cormet de Roselend: Result of the cat. 2 KOM at Cormet de Roselend, km 70: 1. Warren Barguil, 5 points 2. Jesus Herrada, 3 3. Elie Gesbert, 2 4. Mikel Nieve, 1
16:29 Alaphilippe back in the pack: Stage 10 winner Julian Alaphilippe is reeled in by the peloton.
16:27 The dolphin and The Shark: Two Bahrain-Merida riders have taken over from Team Sky at the helm of the peloton: Franco Pellizotti, known as The Dolphin of Bibbione (he's also the oldest Tour de France rider, aged 40), ahead of Vincenzo Nibali, The Shark of the Strait (the strait of Messina).
16:25 Guillaume Martin eyes the white jersey: Guillaume Martin is in a good position to take the white jersey at La Rosière where he imposed himself at the 2015 Tour de l'Avenir.
16:23 Pauwels still virtually in yellow: Valverde is 3' behind the leading group. He needs to be less than 2'2'' adrift to the take the virtual lead over from Pauwels.
16:20 Gorka Izagirre cramps: Gorka Izagirre who was in the front group has been forced to stop due to cramping on the way to the Cormet de Roselend.
16:18 Alaphilippe likely to retain the polka dot jersey: Current standings of the KOM competition: Alaphilippe has 61 points, Pauwels has 49, Taaramäe has 36 and Barguil has 35. 5 points are up for grabs at Cormet de Roselend, 10 points are on offer to the stage winner at La Rosière.
16:13 Valverde 1'15'' ahead of the peloton: At col du Pré, Valverde is 3'55'' adrift, the peloton led by Team Sky is 5'10'' down
16:12 20 points for Barguil at col du Pré: Result of the H.C. KOM at Col du Pré, km 57.5: 1. Warren Barguil, 20 points 2. Serge Pauwels, 15 3. Elie Gesbert, 12 4. Darwin Atapuma, 10 5. Jesus Herrada, 8 6. Damiano Caruso, 6 7. Tanel Kangert, 4 8. Mathias Frank, 2
16:07 Barguil first at col du Pré: Warren Barguil crests the col du Pré in first position ahead of Serge Pauwels.
16:06 Soler with Valverde: Marc Soler has waited for Valverde. They're climbing together to col du Pré.
16:01 Alaphilippe in trouble: Julian Alaphilippe gets dropped by the leading group. The pace is set by Fortuneo for Warren Barguil.
15:59 13 riders in the lead: 13 riders form the front group including 3 from Fortuneo-Samsic and KOM leader Julian Alaphilippe. Valverde has 30'' lead over the peloton.
15:54 Valverde attacks: Valverde attacks solo 5km before the top of col du Pré
15:53 Movistar takes the command: Movistar has taken over from Team Sky at the helm of the peloton with Andrey Amador and Mikel Landa.
15:51 End of the odyssey for Van Avermaet?: Greg Van Avermaet and Rigoberto Uran are getting dropped by the main peloton.
15:50 Martin-Soler: revenge at La Rosière?: The finish at La Rosière is unprecedented at the Tour de France but two breakaway riders know it very well: stage 5 of the 2015 Tour de l'Avenir saw the victory of Guillaume Martin while eventual overall winner Marc Soler finished third in the ski resort of the St-Bernard Pass.
15:39 31 riders in the lead: 10km before the top of col du Pré, 31 riders are in the lead with an advantage of 6' over the peloton led by Team Sky. Rolland, Kragh, Barguil, G. Izagirre, Nieve, Soler, Van Garderen, Alaphilippe, Pauwels, Vichot, De Gendt, Taaramäe, Skujins, Herrada, Navarro and G. Martin are among the leading riders.
15:29 Team Sky ups the tempo: Team Sky speeds up at the head of the peloton. There's a split in the bunch in the valley between the two H.C. climbs.
15:23 Barguil, Alaphilippe and De Gendt in the lead: With 65km to go, Barguil, Alaphilippe and De Gendt are in the lead but they seem to wait for their former breakaway companions before the ascent to col du Pré.
15:20 Chris Froome: "It would be a dream scenario to put Thomas in yellow today": Chris Froome declared this morning: "We don't have the yellow jersey at the moment so it's a little bit different. It would be a dream scenario to put Geraint into yellow jersey today. It depends who is in the breakaway.Yesterday it was great to have the numbers in the finale. Today I can see fireworks from the beginning." Team Sky has the situation under control with 70km to go. The grueling climb to col du Pré is coming up.
15:13 Peloton at 6': The peloton led by Team Sky crested the Montée de Bisanne with a deficit of 6'. Serge Pauwels is the virtual yellow jersey.
15:12 Vincenzo Nibali: "I expect Thomas in yellow at La Rosière": Lots of Italian cycling fans have passed the border at the Piccolo San Bernardo pass to watch the Tour de France today as La Rosière is located 8km from away Italy. The colour of the day is pink – like at the Giro. Vincenzo Nibali knows he’s highly awaited in action today: “Yesterday it was a particular day of racing because it came after a rest day”, The Shark said at the start in Albertville. “The rhythm was very high and there was some head wind too that prevented attacks from going on. Today, I expect Geraint Thomas to look for the yellow jersey. I’m well. I want to see if there’s an opportunity to try something. Dan Martin is an explosive rider. The finish suits him much.”
15:10 Alaphilippe first at Montée de Bisanne: Result of the H.C. KOM at Montée de Bisanne, km 26: 1. Julian Alaphilippe, 20 points At 3’’ : 2. Warren Barguil, 15 3. Thomas De Gendt, 12 At 10’’ 4. Serge Pauwels, 10 At 20’’ 5. Rein Taaramäe, 8 6. Anthony Perez, 6 At 35’’ 7. Mikel Nieve, 4 8. Darwin Atapuma, 2
15:00 Pauwels close to the virtual yellow jersey: The highest ranked of the 20 breakaway riders is Serge Pauwels. He's 19th at 5'12''. 2km before the summit, the front group has 5'10'' lead over the peloton led by Sky. Dimension Data dreams big today as they celebrate the Mandela Day (Nelson Mandela was born on July 18 one hundred years ago).
14:57 20 riders in the lead: 3km before the summit of Montée de Bisanne, 20 riders are reunited at the front. Alaphilippe and Barguil are still part of it.
14:53 All distinctive jersey holders won their first GT stage at La Vuelta: The four distinctive jersey holders today have something in common. They won their first Grand Tour stage at La Vuelta. Greg van Avermaet at Sabiñánigo in 2008, Peter Sagan (in 2011) at Málaga where this year's La Vuelta will kick off on August 25, Pierre Latour at Alto de Aitana in 2016, Julian Alaphilippe at Xorret de Catí in 2017.
14:47 8 riders in the lead: With two more riders coming across, eight riders are in the lead 6km before the top:  Romain Sicard (Direct Energie), Julian Alaphilippe (Quick Step), Damiano Caruso and Tejay van Garderen (BMC), Warren Barguil (Fortuneo), Pawel Poljanski (Bora), Anthony Perez and Dani Navarro (Cofidis)
14:42 Barguil and Alaphilippe at the front: Romain Sicard (Direct Energie), Julian Alaphilippe (Quick Step), Damiano Caruso (BMC), Tejay van Garderen (BMC), Warren Barguil (Fortuneo) and Dani Navarro (Cofidis) form the leading group 8km before the top of Montée de Bisanne.
14:39 Chasing group: Pierre Rolland (EF), Tony Gallopin and Mathias Frank (AG2R-La Mondiale), Chad Haga and Soren Kragh (Sunweb), Maxime Bouet, Elie Gesbert, Romain Hardy and Amaël Moinard (Fortuneo-Samsic), Gorka Izagirre (Bahrain-Merida), Damian Howson and Mikel Nieve (Mitchelton), Marc Soler (Movistar), Stefan Küng and Tejay van Garderen (BMC), Darwin Atapuma (UAE), Julian Alaphilippe, Philippe Gilbert and Niki Terpstra (Quick-Step), Marcus Burghardt and Pawel Poljanski (Bora), Tanel Kangert and Michael Valgren (Astana) formed the chasing group. Alaphilippe and Van Garderen have attacked to try and bridge the gap to the four leaders.
14:30 Peter Sagan gets dropped: Peter Sagan can't follow the pace. 4 riders in the lead up to Bisanne: Sicard, Barguil, Navarro and Caruso.
14:28 20 more points for Sagan: Result of the intermediate sprint at Villard-sur-Doron, km 11.5: 1. Peter Sagan, 20 points 2. Damiano Caruso, 17 3. Warren Barguil, 15 4. Dani Navarro, 13 5. Romain Sicard, 11 At 40’’: 6. Andrea Pasqualon, 10 7. Serge Pauwels, 9 8. Philippe Gilbert, 8 9. Jesus Herrada, 7 10. Elie Gesbert, 6 11. Tanel Kangert, 5 12. Michael Valgren, 4 13. Pawel Poljanski, 3 14. Niki Terpstra, 2 15. Thomas De Gendt, 1
14:25 Sagan wins the intermediate sprint: Peter Sagan is first at the line of the intermediate sprint at km 11.5. The first chasing group is at 40''.
14:23 Sagan and Barguil at the front: Behind the Sagan-Barguil group, Julian Alaphilippe is part of a 21-man chasing group.
14:16 Dani Navarro turns 35 today: Breakaway rider Dani Navarro (Cofidis) turns 35 today
14:15 5 riders in the lead: 5 riders have gone clear: Sagan, Navarro, Caruso, Sicard and Barguil.
14:09 Romain Sicard the first in action: Romain Sicard is the first rider on the offensive after the flag off.
14:08 The race is on: The start proper of stage 11 has been given to 165 riders at 14.07.
14:04 Movistar with the yellow bibs: Movistar leads the teams classification. Bahrain-Merida is second at 18 seconds. LottoNL-Jumbo is third at 3’10’’.
14:02 Pierre Latour in the white jersey: Pierre Latour (AG2R-La Mondiale) is the new best young rider with an advantage of 1’54’’ over Guillaume Martin (Wanty-Groupe Gobert), 4’02’’ over previous white jersey holder Soren Kragh (Sunweb), 8’47’’ over Egan Bernal (Sky) and 15’42’’ over David Gaudu (Groupama-FDJ).
14:00 Julian Alaphilippe in the polka dot jersey: Julian Alaphilippe (Quick Step Floors) is the new King of the Mountains with 41 points, ahead of Rein Taaramäe (Direct Energie), 28, Serge Pauwels (Dimension Data), 24, Rudy Molard (Groupama-FDJ), 22, and David Gaudu (Groupama-FDJ), 21. There are four categorized climbs today: - Km 26: Montée de Bisanne (HC), 12.4km at 8.2% - Km 57.5: Col du Pré (HC), 12.6km at 7.7% - Km 70: Cormet de Roselend (cat. 2), 5.7km at 6.5% - Km 108.5: La Rosière (cat. 1), 17.6km at 5.8%
13:58 Peter Sagan in the green jersey: Peter Sagan (Bora-Hansgrohe) leads the points classification with 319 points, followed by the other double stage winners Fernando Gaviria (Quick Step), 218, and Dylan Groenewegen (LottoNL-Jumbo), 132. Today’s intermediate sprint is at Villard-sur-Doron, km 11.5.
13:54 Greg Van Avermaet in the yellow jersey: Greg Van Avermaet (BMC) in is the yellow jersey since the team time trial on stage 3. He extended his lead throughout the first mountain stage yesterday. He’s 2’22’’ ahead of Critérium du Dauphiné winner Geraint Thomas. The other GC contenders are: 3. Alejandro Valverde, at 3’10’’ 4. Jakob Fuglsang, at 3’12’’ 5. Bob Jungels, at 3’20’’ 6. Chris Froome, at 3’21’’ 7. Adam Yates, st 8. Mikel Landa, st 9. Vincenzo Nibali, at 3’27’’ 10. Primoz Roglic, at 3’36’’ 11. Tom Dumoulin, at 3’42’’ 12. Steven Kruijswijk, at 3’45’’ 13. Rafal Majka, at 4’02’’ 14. Romain Bardet, at 4’11’’ 15. Bauke Mollema, at 4’28’’ 16. Nairo Quintana, at 4’29’’ 17. Dan Martin, at 5’01’’ 18. Ilnur Zakarin, at 5’12’’ 22. Rigoberto Uran, at 7’08’’
13:12 Stage 11 to start at 2pm in Albertville: Welcome to the live coverage of stage 11 in the 105th Tour de France, 108.5km from Albertville to La Rosière. Start scheduled at 14.00.

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