14Limoux >> Foix
- Stage 14 (192 km)
After being developed around its church, the city rapidly developed thanks to its linen and leather industry. Today, Limoux is renowned for its blanquette (sparkling wine), its Toques et Clochers Festival, its carnival, its museums and its gastronomy. la blanquette - it is the oldest sparkling wine in the world. Discovered in 1531 its method of wine production was subsequently applied to champagne by Dom Perignon. It makes up the main economy of the town and of the region. You can also include the Anne de Joyeuse cave that produces quality AOC wines. Toques et Clochers - this wine auction held in Spring takes place with the aim of raising money for the restauration of the ancient belltowers (clochers). It is followed by a meal prepared by a top chef (Toque). the carnival - every winter it lasts nearly three months. It is the longest carnival in the world. Festivities begin 12 weeks before the religious festival of Palm Sunday. the museums - the Petiet Museum is dedicated to paintings, there are also museums celebrating the piano, automata, printing and plants at La Bouichère. gastronomy - little pebradous biscuits, salted liver artichokes, Limouxine duck, fricassée, pescalhos (pancakes),...
Right in the heart of the Ariège, at the foot of the Pyrenees, Foix, symbolised by its three towers of its Château Comtal, combines the quality of life of an average town with the advantages of its immediate proximity to a great metropolis, Toulouse, but also with the Pyrenees, Spain and Andorra. Undoubtedly the emblematic monument of the city, the Castle (10th - 15th centuries) stands majestically on its rock and was home to the Counts of Foix, including the brilliant Gaston Febus (1343-1391). A Tour stage town and popular with tourists, Foix combines the authenticity of its ancient medieval centre with the diversity of its businesses and the quality of its beautiful natural environment. This unspoiled environment is perfect for so many sporting activities and outdoor leisure pursuits: cycling and mountainbiking, walking or horseriding, rafting in calm or choppy waters or even paragliding down the valley. Foix is in a privileged spot for discovering the treasures of the Ariege department: middle age castles, Cathar citadels, roman abbeys, prehistoric caves.. or quite simply sublime natural locations.
Live Stage Reports
Peloton arrives at the finish 18'15" behind Sanchez
17 Jul 12|01:39 AM
The yellow jersey has arrived at the finish 18"15" behind Sanchez.
Evans back with the yellow jersey group
17 Jul 12|01:25 AM
Only one rider was willing to attack the yellow jersey group after the incident of Evans - Pierre Rolland. We can report that Evans has now, finally, rejoined the group with Wiggins.
The top five in stage 14
17 Jul 12|01:23 AM
The day will be remembered for several things - mechanical woes key amongst them - but that takes nothing away from the triumph of Luis Leon Sanchez. The top five in stage 14 is: 1. Luis Leon Sanchez (ESP) RAB - 4h50'29" 2. Peter Sagan (SVK) LIQ at 47" 3. Sandy Casar (FRA) FDJ at 47" 4. Philippe Gilbert (BEL) BMC at 47" 5. Gorka Izaguirre (ESP) EUS at 47"
Sagan takes 2nd place
17 Jul 12|01:21 AM
Sagan has led his quartet to the line about 45" behind Sanchez.
Luis Leon Sanchez: wins in style...!
17 Jul 12|01:20 AM
That's it: win number four in the Tour de France for Luis Leon Sanchez.
1,000m before wins again...
17 Jul 12|01:19 AM
Luis Leon Sanchez is going to give Spain its first win in the 2012 Tour. He is one of just four Rabobank riders left in the race and he's inside the final kilometre with, essentially, an unbeatable advantage. He has started to salute well before the line. Wait for the gesture to the heavens as he always dedicates his wins to his brother...
Sagan wins fighting spirit award
17 Jul 12|01:18 AM
The rider in the green jersey will collect a red dossard for stage 15 as the winner of the fighting spirit award today.
Sanchez destined to win the stage
17 Jul 12|01:17 AM
Sanchez is less than 2km from the finish of the stage. He is 45" ahead of Sagan's quartet.
Liquigas and Lotto riding...
17 Jul 12|01:16 AM
Evans has the support of many team-mates but his group is now in hot pursuit of the yellow jersey's peloton that is certainly no longer hanging around for the rider who suffered a complete nightmare with mechanical incidents. There is 40" between the group that's led by Liquigas and VDB and the BMC team leader.
4km to go for Sanchez
17 Jul 12|01:15 AM
Sanchez is less than 4km from the line. He has a lead of 35" on Gilbert, Izaguirre, Sagan and Casar.
Peloton 20km from the finish
17 Jul 12|01:14 AM
Evans is 30" behind Wiggins with 20km to go.
Pay day for Rabobank...?
17 Jul 12|01:11 AM
Sanchez is now 25" ahead of Gilbert, Sagan, Izaguirre and Casar. There might be only four Rabobank riders left in the race but one of them looks likely to win a stage.
Sanchez leads by 20"
17 Jul 12|01:10 AM
There is 20" between the stage leader and the four chasers. Sanchez seems likely to go on and win his fourth stage of the Tour de France. BUt the four chasers are all swapping off in an attempt to reel him in.
10km to go
17 Jul 12|01:08 AM
With 10km to go, Sanchez has a lead of 12" on Sagan, Izaguirre, Casar and Gilbert.
Multiple wheel changes for Evans...
17 Jul 12|01:07 AM
This will be the stage that's remembered for the woes of the defending champion on the final climb. Evans has changed a wheel at least three times and he recently had to stop again to get a new front wheel. There have been punctures for many of the riders in the GC group.
Sanchez attacks the lead group
17 Jul 12|01:06 AM
Sanchez has decided it's time to attack. He has hit out with 11km to go and there's been no reaction from the four others.
Five in the lead...
17 Jul 12|01:05 AM
With 12km to go, there are five in the lead of the stage: Sagan (LIQ), Izaguirre (EUS), Casar (FDJ), Sanchez (RAB) and Gilbert (BMC).
Scarponi now needs a wheel
17 Jul 12|01:04 AM
Scarponi is the latest GC rider to have a puncture. Wiggins is back with the group he was part of before he changed his bike.
Kiserlovksi out of the Tour
17 Jul 12|01:03 AM
Robert Kiserlovski (AST) is out of the Tour. He has apparently broken his collarbone in a crash.
Evans 1'10" behind Wiggins...
17 Jul 12|01:02 AM
There is a truce from the GC riders who are 16'00" behind the stage leaders but with Wiggins taking a new bike there's no attacks from the likes of Nibali et al. They are 1'10" ahead of Evans.
Wiggins calls the team car
17 Jul 12|01:01 AM
Wiggins has dropped behind the other riders to consult the team car: he's been waiting for Evans but it's going to long wait as the Australian was faced with utter turmoil at the top of the climb. Wiggins has taken a new bike and is racing again.
Three in the lead...
17 Jul 12|01:00 AM
While there's all sort of oddities taking place with the GC riders, we can report that Sagan, Izaguirre and Casar are still in the lead of the stage. They are less than 17km from the finish.
Rolland on the attack...
17 Jul 12|00:58 AM
While Wiggins wants to show some respect for the problems that Evans is experiencing Rolland doesn't care less, he's on the attack. And now we see the yellow jersey in debate with a RadioShack rider who is also ready to go on the attack on the downhill.
Evans gets another wheel...!
17 Jul 12|00:57 AM
The BMC team car has finally fixed the bike problems for Evans but it's a woeful scene for the defending champion. He is complely out of contact with the yellow jersey but Wiggins is seemingly respecting the problems that Evans has had...
Wiggins not racing...
17 Jul 12|00:55 AM
With Evans utterly stranded, Wiggins is signalling a truce in his group. They are respecting the fact that the Australian has been caught between a rock and a hard place...
17 Jul 12|00:53 AM
Evans is standing on the road without a wheel and there is no one there to fix it for him.
12" between Casar and chasing pair
17 Jul 12|00:51 AM
Gilbert and Sanchez are 12" behind Casar and Izaguirre but Sagan is the fastest on the downhill. Only Izaguirre dares to try and match the pace of the Slovakian...
15 in yellow jersey group
17 Jul 12|00:50 AM
There are only 15 men in the group with Wiggo, including two more Sky riders - Froome and Porte.
Sagan races into the lead
17 Jul 12|00:47 AM
Casar has been caught and passed by Sagan at the front of the stage. But there are, essentially, three in the lead: Sagan followed by Casar, followed by Izaguirre.
Porte still leading peloton
17 Jul 12|00:46 AM
There are three Sky riders at the front of the first peloton. It includes Porte (in the lead), then Froome and then Wiggins. Evans is right on the wheel of the yellow jersey and Nibali is to the right of the Australian.
Sagan and Izaguirre 10" behind Casar
17 Jul 12|00:44 AM
Izaguirre and Sagan are actually the riders in third and fourth (at 10"). Then comes Sanchez and Gilbert... but we don't have a time check on the riders in fourth and fifth place (yet).
Casar leads by 20"
17 Jul 12|00:43 AM
Sanchez and Gilbert are in second and third. They are 20" behind Casar.
Peloton on the steep section...
17 Jul 12|00:42 AM
Richie Porte is leading the peloton 15'15" behind the escapees. The yellow jersey's bunch is down to about 30 men and it is about to reach the steepest section of the final climb. Van den Broeck and Rolland are just nearby and Nibali has one rider along for support. Evans is on the wheel of his former team-mate (VDB) and Wiggins is following the wheel of Froome.
Result of Mur de Peguere
17 Jul 12|00:40 AM
1. Sandy Casar (FDJ) 10pts 2. Izaguirre (EUS) 8pts - 5" 3. Sagan (LIQ) 6pts 4. Gilbert (BMC) 4pts - at 40" 5. Sanchez (RAB) 2pts 6. Paulinho (STB) 1pt - at 58" Kruiswijk is 1'55" behind at the top and Vorganov is at 2'10".
Casar claims 10 points
17 Jul 12|00:38 AM
The FDJ rider has claimed first place on the Mur de Peguere.
Sandy on his own...
17 Jul 12|00:37 AM
Sandy Casar (FDJ) is inside the final 500m of the final climb. He has a lead of about 50 metres on Izaguirre who is closely followed by Sagan. Behind this pair is Gilbert and Sanchez.
Five in the lead
17 Jul 12|00:36 AM
Casar is still trying to snap the elastic and he's put a bit of distance into Izagiurre and Gilbert but there's not much between the five at the front of the stage.
Sagan at 8"
17 Jul 12|00:34 AM
Sagan is still within sight of the four stage leaders. His last time check was 8" but the steep section of the final climb is behind them. Casar is out of the saddle and accelerating at exactly the time that Sagan was about to catch the lead group.
Lotto move around Sky
17 Jul 12|00:32 AM
The Lotto-Belisol team now has four men at the head of the peloton.
Sagan hunts down leading four
17 Jul 12|00:29 AM
Sagan was 10" behind Sanchez's quartet and riding with Minard but the green jersey is closing in on the leaders...
Cav gives it one last turn of pace...
17 Jul 12|00:28 AM
The peloton is 16 minutes behind the escape. Cavendish has been ahead of the yellow jersey all day and the world champion is currently at the front early on the final climb of the stage.
Sanchez ahead of Gilbert
17 Jul 12|00:25 AM
With 42km to go, Sanchez's turn of pace is knocking a few riders out of the lead group. Gilbert is on the wheel of the Spaniard but Kruiswijk has been dropped. Izarguirre (EUS) and Casar (FDJ) have also come back on terms with the two at the front.
Escapees arrive at the brutal part of the climb
17 Jul 12|00:24 AM
Sections of the final climb today are at gradients of over 20 per cent. Kruiswijk's turn is over and now Sanchez is leading Gilbert on one of the truly steep sections.
Two Rabobankers lead escape
17 Jul 12|00:22 AM
Kruiswijk is currently setting the pace of the escape just ahead of Sanchez. There hasn't yet been an attack on any of the climbs today: the front 11 are sharing the pace of the break, and Sky is tapping out the tempo of the bunch that's 15'40" behind...
Masters of the descent in lead group
17 Jul 12|00:17 AM
Of the 11 in the lead, several have a reputation as being maestros of the descent. The escape group is: Gilbert (BMC), Gautier (EUC), Izaguirre (EUS), Sagan (LIQ), Minard (ALM), Vorganov (KAT), Casar (FDJ), Kruiswijk and Sanchez (RAB), Paulinho (STB) and M. Velits (OPQ). Two of Sanchez's three Tour stage wins were achieved largely as a result of his panache going downhill. He attacked the final descent on the road to Aurillac in 2008 and won the stage on his own. And when he beat Sandy Casar in St-Girons in 2009 the Spaniard used the downhill push ahead of several other escapees. Gilbert, Izaguirre, and Sagan are also formidable on descents. The top of the Peguere climb is 38.5km from the finish in Foix.
11 in the lead again...
17 Jul 12|00:12 AM
Gautier has rejoined the lead group that is on the early slopes of the Mur de Péguère.
Gilbert leads through Massat
17 Jul 12|00:10 AM
The BMC rider in the escape group is Philippe Gilbert. He is at the front as the break goes through Massat 48km from the finish in Foix. Now it's time to climb again. The Mur de Peguere is 9.3km long with an average gradient of 7.9 per cent. Gautier is 20" behind the 10 stage leaders.
Gautier still chasing
17 Jul 12|00:05 AM
Gautier has not been able to get closer to the lead group. The last time check has the Europcar rider 40" behind the 10 at the front of the stage.
Rolland just wanted a jacket...
17 Jul 12|00:04 AM
Rolland almost looked apologetic for being near the front of the peloton. He seemed to indicate to Wiggins, 'Ah, i'm only here to collect a jersey before the downhill... that okay with you...?' The bunch has crested the Port de Lers 14'15" behind the escapees.
Knees sets the pace...
17 Jul 12|00:02 AM
Eisel is no longer at the front of the bunch but Sky is still in control. Knees is now setting the pace for Wiggins but Rolland appears to be getting ready to pounce. The Frenchman is second in the climbing classification but there are no more points on offer at the top... so we can discount that as the reason for him looking twitchy.
New jersey for Wiggo
16 Jul 12|23:58 PM
The race leader is putting on a long sleeve jersey near the head of the peloton. Eisel continues to set the pace of the bunch and Knees is right behind the Austrian. The world champion is still at the front at the time that some riders are losing touch...
Gautier at 40"
16 Jul 12|23:56 PM
The 10 leaders are 40" ahead of Gautier and the peloton is at 14'30"...
10 in the lead
15 Jul 12|23:53 PM
Gautier has a considerable chase ahead of him after the recent mechanical problem. He is well behind the 10 men who he had been riding with since the 56km mark.
Result of Port de Lers
15 Jul 12|23:52 PM
The points for the second climb of stage 14 were won by: 1. Sergio Paulinho (STB) 10pts 2. Eduard Vorganov (KAT) 8pts 3. Philippe Gilbert (BMC) 6pts 4. Steven Kruiswijk (RAB) 4pts 5. Martin Velits (OPQ) 2pts 6. Luis Leon Sanchez (RAB) 1pt
Gautier out of lead group
15 Jul 12|23:51 PM
Gautier has had to change his bike after a problem with his rear derailleur...
Paulinho leads escape over the top...
15 Jul 12|23:49 PM
The Saxo Bank-Tinkoff Bank rider in the escape has taken the 10 points for first on the Port de Lers. (Full result to follow shortly...)
Long sleeve jersey for Sagan...
15 Jul 12|23:48 PM
Rain is now falling and the riders are adding layers of clothing. Sagan has just taken a long sleeve jersey at the front of the stage. His group of 11 is less than 500m from the top of the Port de Lers.
Eisel still leading peloton...
15 Jul 12|23:45 PM
The bunch is only just taking time out of the leaders. Eisel and Cavendish are still at the front of the group that started the climb 15'00" behind the 11 escapees - they are now at 14'30".
10 degrees on Port de Lers
15 Jul 12|23:42 PM
The temperature at the start of the stage was 19 degrees Celsius. There's a little bit of rain now and, as the leaders get to within 2km of the top of the second climb, the temperature is down to just 10 degrees.
Port de Lers: cat-3 in 2011
15 Jul 12|23:37 PM
The Port de Lers was part of the 14th stage in last year's Tour. Today it's rated category-one and last year it was considered category-three...
Izaguirre first over Port de Lers last year
15 Jul 12|23:34 PM
The Tour's itinerary in 2011 included the climb that the riders are currently on. The rider who took first at the top was Gorka Izaguirre (EUS) who is one of the 11-man group that's at the front of the race today.
5km yet to climb
15 Jul 12|23:33 PM
The leaders are inside the final 5km of the Port de Lers. There have been no attacks on this category-one climb. Eisel and Cavendish are at the front of the peloton that is now 14'45" behind Sagan's group.
Peloton is on the Port de Lers
15 Jul 12|23:28 PM
The peloton is snaking its way up the early part of the second climb. It is 15'00" behind the 11 escapees.
Lead over 15 minutes
15 Jul 12|23:24 PM
At the 111km mark, the 11 escapees are 15'05" ahead of the peloton.
Three FDJ riders near front peloton
15 Jul 12|23:20 PM
Sky has been leading the bunch since early today but, at the start of the Port de Lers we see three FDJ-BigMat riders alongside the 'blue line' at the front of the peloton.
Reminder of the 11 escapees
15 Jul 12|23:17 PM
While there have been no attacks yet at the front of the race, it's as good a time as any to remind you of the composition of the escape group. Sagan instigated the move at the 35km. The best on GC of the selection is Vorganov, the champion of Russia, who was 26th overall after 13 stages. The men in the lead are: Gilbert (BMC), Gautier (EUC), Izaguirre (EUS), Sagan (LIQ), Minard (ALM), Vorganov (KAT), Casar (FDJ), Kruiswijk and Sanchez (RAB), Paulinho (STB) and M. Velits (OPQ).
75km to go
15 Jul 12|23:14 PM
Gautier (EUC) is at the front of the escape group that is inside the final 75km of the stage. Sagan (LIQ) is calling for the team car but all 11 are still together early on the Port de Lers.
Leaders on the climb
15 Jul 12|23:13 PM
The 11 escapees have begun the second climb of the 14th stage with an advantage of 14'15" on the peloton.
80km to go
15 Jul 12|23:07 PM
The escapees are inside the final 80km of the stage. They are 13'30" ahead of the bunch and the ascent of the second climb isn't far away. The Port de Lers is 11.4km long with an average gradient of seven per cent. The top is at the 126.5km mark (64.5km from the finish). The Port de Lers was on the itinerary in the 1995 Tour when Marco Pantani was the first man to the top.
Greipel takes 9th place points
15 Jul 12|23:04 PM
The peloton has arrived at the site of the sprint 13'20" behind the escapees. The winner of yesterday's stage led the bunch to the line, followed by Eisel, Porte and Rogers of the Sky team.
Half the Rabobank team in today's escape
15 Jul 12|22:56 PM
With five of the Rabobank team now out of the 99th Tour, it's worth noting that half of the remaining riders from the Dutch squad are in the escape today. Luis Leon Sanchez and Steven Kruiswijk are part of the 11-man move that is now almost 13 minutes ahead of the peloton.
Eight places in Tarascon...
15 Jul 12|22:51 PM
The peloton is over 12 minutes from the intermediate sprint but the first eight places went to: 1. Sagan 20pts 2. Kruiswijk 17pts 3. Casar 15pts 4. Paulinho 13pts 5. Gilbert 11pts 6. Izaguirre 10pts 7. Velits 9pts 8. Sanchez 8pts
First three place at intermediate sprint
15 Jul 12|22:47 PM
Peter Sagan has collected another 20 points for the green jersey. The order over the line at the 99km mark was: 1. Peter Sagan (LIQ) 20pts 2. Steven Kruiswijk (RAB) 17pts 3. Sandy Casar (FDJ) 15pts...
Leaders near intermediate sprint
15 Jul 12|22:45 PM
The escapees are inside the final kilometres leading to the intermediate sprint... surely the others know what Sagan is going to do.
Maassen: We’ll see what happens later...
15 Jul 12|22:43 PM
“With only four riders left, we’ve got to try something,” Frans Maassen of the Rabobank team told LeTour.fr recently. The directeur sportif is pleased that Luis Leon Sanchez has been able to slot himself into the lead group that’s now over 12 minutes ahead of the peloton. The Spaniard has won three stages of the Tour in the past, including one for the Dutch team in St-Flour last year. “At least we’re showing that we are still in the race,” said Maassen. “For a minute we had a little bit of hope that the attack by Sanchez in the final two kilometres of stage 13 might have given us a win but when Wiggins was pulling the bunch behind, it’s really difficult to hold on, eh? That’s racing and we know anything can happen.” We asked the DS if Sanchez has a special accord with Sandy Casar as, it seems that whenever the Frenchman attacks so too does the Spaniard. “Hah!” laughed Maassen. “Ah, maybe. We’ll see what happens later on, eh? “They are both very strong riders but sometimes those sorts of riders don’t have a lot of possibilities – they can’t go on the attack unless they’re down the ‘classement’ but sometimes when they drop down a little they’re given a bit more room to move. “There’s a chance that they’ll hold on until the end today but you never know what can happen. It’s still hard in the final and all this could change on the final two hills.”
Average speed for second hour
15 Jul 12|22:34 PM
After a fast start, the pace has eased a little in the second hour of stage 14. The average speed was 40.6km/h. The average speed for the first two hours combined is 43.4km/h.
15 Jul 12|22:28 PM
The 11 escapees have an advantage of 11 minutes now. The move was started by Sagan at the 35km mark. He took two others with him - Kruiswijk and Paulinho and they were joined in the lead at 56km by eight others. There are 106km to go for the leaders which means the intermediate sprint is about 16km away. This prime is in Tarascon-sur-Ariege which hosted the start of the stage that finished in Le Cap d'Agde in 1998.
Lead up to 10'00"
15 Jul 12|22:20 PM
Sagan, Gilbert, Izaguirre, Gautier, Minard, Vorganov, Sanchez, Casar, M. Velits, Kruiswijk and Paulinho are 10 minutes ahead of the peloton at the 72km mark.
Hey Sandy, you going...?
15 Jul 12|22:17 PM
It seems that whenever Sandy Casar goes on the attack in the Tour de France, another rider in the escape group is Luis Leon Sanchez. They've already been on the attack together in the 2012 Tour (stage 10). They were first and second in St-Flour in 2011 (Luis ahead of Sandy). They were first and second in St-Girons in 2009 (Luis ahead of Sandy). They were first and second in St-Jean-de Maurienne in 2010 (Sandy ahead of Luis). There are other examples but this is a start.
The peloton in Lavelanet
15 Jul 12|22:07 PM
The small town of Lavelanet in the Ariege department which is at the 68.5km mark of today’s stage has also twice hosted the start of stages of the Tour de France. In 2002, the 13th stage went from Lavelanet to Bezier and David Millar was the winner; six years later the town hosted the start of a stage that finished in Montpellier and Mark Cavendish was the winner.
Four Sky riders answer nature's call...
15 Jul 12|22:05 PM
With the advantage of the escapees growing, we can report that half of the Sky riders have stopped to answer the call of nature in the peloton. This means that the next time check for the 11-man escape is likely to grow. We can also tell you that Taaramae has just drifted back behind the peloton to talk with his directeur sportif. The current advantage of Sagan's group is 6'40".
Five of the 11 escapees have previously won at the Tour...
15 Jul 12|21:59 PM
Of the 11 men in the lead of stage 14, five have previously won at least one stage of the race in the past. They are: Gilbert (BMC), Sagan (LIQ), Casar (FDJ), Sanchez (RAB) and Paulinho (STB).
4'00" at 61km...
15 Jul 12|21:56 PM
The 11 escapees have an advantage of 4'00" at the 61km mark.
11 lead by 2'00"
15 Jul 12|21:53 PM
The 11 leaders are now 2'00" ahead of the peloton. Here's a reminder of who is on the attack:Philippe Gilbert (FRA) BMC, Cyril Gautier (FRA) EUC, Gorka Izaguirre (ESP) EUS, Peter Sagan (SVK) LIQ, Sebastien Minard (FRA) ALM, Eduard Vorganov (RUS) KAT, Sandy Casar (FRA) FDJ, Steven Kruiswijk (NED) RAB, Luis Sanchez (ESP) RAB and Martin Velits (SVK) OPQ.
Vorgranov the best of the escapees on GC
15 Jul 12|21:50 PM
Of the 11 in the lead of stage 14, the best on GC after 13 stages is the Russian champion Eduard Vorganov. He started the day ranked 26th overall, 33'59" behind Wiggins.
11 in the lead
15 Jul 12|21:47 PM
Gilbert (BMC), Gautier (EUC), Izaguirre (EUS), Sagan (LIQ), Minard (ALM), Vorganov (KAT), Casar (FDJ), Sanchez and Kruiswijk (RAB), Paulinho (STB) and Velits (OPQ) are now all together at the front of the stage. They are 1'12" ahead of the peloton.
Two pelotons together again
15 Jul 12|21:44 PM
The second peloton has caught up with the yellow jersey's group at the 54km mark. That means there are just 11 men ahead of the main pack: Sagan, Kruiswijk and Paulinho at the front. Followed by Gilbert, Gautier, Izaguirre, Minard, Vorganov, Casar, Sanchez and Velits. Edet's brief counter-attack is over.
Edet making a late bid
15 Jul 12|21:42 PM
Edet (COF) has jumped off the front of the pack and he's now in pursuit of the eight counter-attackers. He is 8" ahead of the peloton.
The eight counter-attackers
15 Jul 12|21:41 PM
The eight men in pursuit of Sagan's trio is: Gilbert (BMC), Gautier (EUC), Izaguirre (EUS), Minard (ALM), Vorganov (KAT), Casar (FDJ), Sanchez (RAB) and Velits. They are 18" behind the three at the front.
15 Jul 12|21:40 PM
The second peloton is coming back; a barrage has been called - ie. to get the team cars out of the gap in between - and this means that there's less than a minute between the first and second groups.
Eight in counter-attack...
15 Jul 12|21:38 PM
Sagan's trio is 30" ahead of a group of eight counter-attackers. The first peloton is at 45" and the second peloton (ie. Schleck etc) are at 1'45".
Casar in counter-attack
15 Jul 12|21:36 PM
The escapees are near the 50km mark and have a lead of 26" on a group of seven (including Casar) and then comes Vorganov (KAT) in a second counter-attack. Then comes the peloton at 49".
Three increase their lead
15 Jul 12|21:33 PM
Sagan's trio is now 32" ahead of the peloton. The move began at the 35km mark and it's been active for about 18km already... but they're not being given a lot of leeway.
Fast start to stage 14
15 Jul 12|21:32 PM
The average speed for the first hour was 46.2km/h.
Schleck's group at 1'50"
15 Jul 12|21:29 PM
The second peloton is 1'50" behind the Wiggins group. Rolland has just returned to the peloton after his puncture. Sagan's trio is 24" ahead of the yellow jersey's peloton.
Moinard and Kadri in counter-attack
15 Jul 12|21:28 PM
Sagan's trio is 20" ahead of Moinard (BMC) and Kadri (ALM)... these two Frenchmen were in a counter-attack that lasted - ah, about as long as it took to type this newsflash. They're now back in the bunch.
Three escapees over an hour behind Wiggo
15 Jul 12|21:26 PM
Wiggins won't be worried about the move by Sagan, Kruiswijk and Paulinho who are 15" ahead. The best of these on GC after 13 stages is Kruiswijk (RAB) who is 1h01'56" behind the race leader. The reason that the bunch is chasing the trio is because Sagan (LIQ) is present and, surely, Orica-GreenEdge will be marking him closely. The escapees are at the 42km mark.
Sagan struggling to gain an advantage
15 Jul 12|21:22 PM
Sagan's attack started at the 35km mark. He has Kruiswijk and Paulinho with him but they are just 8" ahead of the first peloton.
Rolland has a flat tyre
15 Jul 12|21:21 PM
Rolland (EUC) has just punctured at the same time that Radio Tour announced that the Schleck group is now 1'15" behind the peloton with Wiggins in it.
Three lead by 10"
15 Jul 12|21:20 PM
Sagan's trio is now 10" ahead of the peloton. The bunch is still split in two and the maximum deficit announced by Radio Tour for the Schleck group was 55".
The three escapees
15 Jul 12|21:19 PM
Sagan (LIQ), Kruiswijk (RAB) and Paulinho (STB) are the three men who are at the front of the stage at the 36km mark. They have a lead of just five seconds.
Three on the attack...
15 Jul 12|21:17 PM
With 55" between the two pelotons, Sagan (LIQ) is one of three men who is attacking the front group on the descent.
Kloden and Schleck in dropped group
15 Jul 12|21:15 PM
There are two distinct pelotons and, in the second group, is Andreas Klöden (RNT). Also in the back group is Frank Schleck (RNT), Coppel (SAU) and Vanendert (LTB). There are about 60 in the second peloton.
Result of first climb
15 Jul 12|21:12 PM
The points for the col du Portel were won by: 1. Voeckler (EUC) 5pts 2. Kessiakoff (AST) 3pts 3. Martinez (EUS) 2pts 4. Vande Velde (GRS) 1pt
Cofidis leading the peloton
15 Jul 12|21:10 PM
The bunch is all together with about 1km to climb and Cofidis is the team that's at the front of the peloton. Voeckler and Taaramae are now on the attack near the top of the col du Portel.
Coppel's crisis was shortlived
15 Jul 12|21:08 PM
Coppel (SAU) has rejoined the peloton after being dropped briefly. The seven escapees have been reeled in after only 1km at the front of the stage.
Seven in the lead
15 Jul 12|21:07 PM
At the 28km mark, seven men have a small advantage on the peloton.
Taaramae's move is over
15 Jul 12|21:06 PM
The Estonian's escape has been nulified and he is back in the peloton which is around the 27km mark.
Several in pursuit Taaramae
15 Jul 12|21:05 PM
Bernaudeau (EUC) and Farrar (GRS) have also been dropped as the bunch ascends the first climb of the stage. Taaramae is still at the front of the stage and there are several men trying to bridge the gap to the Cofidis rider.
Van Hummel dropped
15 Jul 12|21:02 PM
The formation of the grupetto has begun. Kenny van Hummel (VCD) and Yauheni Hutarovich (FDJ) are already off the back of the peloton.
Taaramae on the attack
15 Jul 12|21:01 PM
As the bunch climbs the col du Portel, Rein Taaramae has gone on the attack. The Cofidis rider began his move at the 25km mark.
Peloton about to climb the Col du Portel
15 Jul 12|20:59 PM
The bunch is all together as it begins the ascent of the first climb in stage 14.
Sagan back in peloton
15 Jul 12|20:57 PM
The attack by Sagan et al amounted to nothing. The bunch is all together at the 22km mark.
Sagan one of two riders in the lead
15 Jul 12|20:56 PM
At the 21km mark, Sagan (LIQ) has the company of one rider from Vacansoleil at the front of the stage but this pair is being pursued by a number of counter-attacks.
Sagan in a move of around 20 men...
15 Jul 12|20:54 PM
The rider in the green jersey has, once again, put himself in an early escape group. He is part of a group that's about 20 strong but it's being marked closely by the Sky team.
Only two departments in stage 14
15 Jul 12|20:53 PM
The first climb of the 14th stage is in the Aude department. The col du Portel is ranked category-two and the top is at the 30km mark of today's 191km stage. It is 5.3km long and has an average gradient of 6.3 per cent. The race crosses into the Ariège department at 55km and it's here that the peloton will tackle the Port de Lers and Mur de Peguere.
Hansen: Lars, myself and Jurgen had to pull in the break
15 Jul 12|20:50 PM
“It's great - three wins in a Grand Tour,” said Australia’s Adam Hansen after the win by Greipel in stage 13. Lotto-Belisol has enjoyed plenty of success already thanks to their German sprinter but the team’s GC rider is also still very well placed. “We still have Van den Broeck in fifth place on GC, we're very happy,” continued Hansen with his appraisal of the race after Bastille Day. “It was a difficult course today with the climb and we gave it everything. We tried to do two things at once, with van den Broeck and Greipel. It was two guys in front and we did everything to pull it back, Andre finished it off. “The crosswind was super-hard, also the climb split it up,” Hansen explained after Greipel claimed his third victory... but only after being helped back to the lead group with an impressive piece of riding by Lars Bak. “I had to be with van den Broeck, so I was at the very front and then there was a second and third group and Greipel was somewhere in there. Two guys attacked off the front and we didn't really know what to do, because Greipel hadn't come back yet. “We waited for Greipel to come back and then Lars, myself and Jurgen had to pull in the break. We got them with 2.5km to go and finished all our men off there, but we had to do it.”
Nothing being allowed to move...
15 Jul 12|20:47 PM
At the 14km mark, the peloton is still all together. There have been a number of escape attempts but everything is being chased down...
Albasini: We had to do something...
15 Jul 12|20:44 PM
“It was a bit of a bad situation, because when the group went we started to pull for Matt and he started to feel not so good,” said one of the riders who tried his luck on the approach to Le Cap d’Agde yesterday. Michael Albasini (OGE) was on the attack with Alexandre Vinokourov (AST) but they were reeled in by the peloton with 2.5km to go. “There was too much work done already, so we had to do something. It was the only thing after that steep climb - I felt pretty good, but I wouldn't wait for the sprint because of the sprinters left in the small bunch. “I took the chance to attack and it was the only thing I could do. We had two opportunities – one with jumping away and one with Daryl Impey for the sprint, explained the Swiss rider who Orica-GreenEdge believes could be one of the riders likely to get in the escape in stage 14... at least that’s the plan. "We have done the best from a situation we got in... it was close. Often these stages look not so hard - at the end, they come out much harder.”
15 Jul 12|20:43 PM
It's still all together early in stage 14. At the 11km mark, none of the escape attempts have yielded any gain.
Vansummeren in a crash
15 Jul 12|20:41 PM
There has been a fall in the peloton that's involved two riders - including Vansummeren (GRS) - but both are back on their bikes and have quickly rejoined the peloton.
RadioShack tries again...
15 Jul 12|20:38 PM
Once again we see a number of men from RadioShack-Nissan try to break free of the peloton but, at the 7km mark, it's all together.
Omega Pharma-Quickstep leads the peloton
15 Jul 12|20:37 PM
So far 5.5km have been raced. The Omega Pharma-Quickstep team has riders at the head of the peloton. No early attacks have gained much ground... and the bunch is still all together.
15 Jul 12|20:35 PM
The attacking RadioShack rider has been reeled in by the peloton at the 4km mark.
Prize classification review: part 04 – white jersey
15 Jul 12|20:34 PM
Rein Taaramae (COF) is one of two riders to have led the youth classification in 2012. He is currently ranked third and, despite a good start to the race, he’s suffering now and was 159th in stage 13. The Estonian is a massive 41’59” behind the other rider to wear the white jersey in the 99th Tour: Tejay van Garderen (BMC). In second place in this category is Thibaut Pinot (FDJ) who is still within striking distance of the lead of the classification open to riders born after 1 January 1987. The winner of stage eight is 1’54” behind the American.
Paulinho leading stage 14
15 Jul 12|20:33 PM
There is one rider at the front early today: it's Sergio Paulinho (RNT) and he's been chased by a number of others who are just ahead of the peloton.
Tailwind early today
15 Jul 12|20:31 PM
The peloton is speeding along early in stage 14 as riders try to establish an escape group right from the get-go. A tailwind is assisting with the rapid pace early today.
Racing: and an immediate attack from FDJ-BigMat
15 Jul 12|20:30 PM
The official start time for the 14th stage is 12.19pm. As soon as the flag fell to signal the start of the race in Limoux there was an attack from a FDJ-BigMat rider.
Prize classification review: part 03 – polka-dot jersey
15 Jul 12|20:27 PM
There was one small change in the climbing classification yesterday and Cadel Evans earned one point on the Mont-Saint-Clair and moved up from 13th to 11th in the race for the polka-dot jersey. Sweden’s Frederik Kessiakoff (AST) continues to wear the spotted top, with a collection of 66 points, 11 more than Pierre Rolland (EUC). Chris Anker Sorensen (STB) is ranked third with 39 points. The climbs in stage 14 are the category-two col du Portel (rising to 601m, with the top at the 30km mark), followed by two category-one passes – the Port de Lers (1,517m high at 126.5km) and the Mur de Péguère (1,375m high at 152.5km).
Prize classification review: part 02 – green jersey
15 Jul 12|20:24 PM
For the second successive day there has been a significant reshuffle of the top order of the points classification. Goss (OGE) has slipped down from second to third after finishing stage 13 in 93rd place; he was 12’31” behind the winner of the stage André Greipel (LTB) who is now ranked second, behind Peter Sagan (LIQ). With his second place in Le Cap d’Agde, Sagan collected 35 points and he’s now got a total tally of 296 points, while Greipel has 232 and Goss 203. The intermediate sprint – offering 20 points for first place – is at the 99km mark of the 191km 14th stage from Limoux to Foix.
Prize classification review: part 01 – yellow jersey
15 Jul 12|20:23 PM
There was no change to the top 10 overall after stage 13. In fact one of the only changes at the top end of the GC result sheet offers a hint of what might be coming on the first day of the 2012 Tour in the Pyrenees. Jelle Vanendert (LTB) was 25th overall after 12 stages and he finished third-last in the stage to Le Cap d’Agde. The Belgian won the stage to Plateau de Beille last year and perhaps he was saving himself for the climbs today. He slipped down the rankings to 29th after stage 13. Wiggins continues to lead team-mate Froome by 2’05”, with Nibali in third at 2’23” and Evans fourth at 3’19”. When Evans won the Tour in 2011, the lowest ranking he had on GC was fourth. And that was just before the final time trial after which he moved up to first – just in time for the parade stage to Paris.
Welcome to the live coverage of stage 14 of the 2012 Tour
15 Jul 12|20:18 PM
The 191km 14th stage of the 99th Tour de France is due to begin at 12.20pm. There is a 2.6km neutral zone before the peloton reaches the site of the official start. Two riders who were at the start of the 2012 race in Liège have some big news from overnight: Fabian Cancellara (who left the Tour last week to be with his wife) has welcomed baby Elina to the world; and Jean-Christophe Peraud, who was second in stage 12, went to Aubenas by helicopter after yesterday's stage to be with his wife. Little Ms Valentine Peraud was born yesterday evening. The Frenchman who was 10th overall last year, returned to the Tour today and he is now on his bike and waiting for the start of the 14th stage from Limoux to Foix. Live coverage of the race will commence shortly.
Gabriel returns to present his delicious series, as it follows the Tour de France 2010.More info