Tour de France: Bradley Wiggins retains yellow jersey in most testing stage yet

 

Bradley Wiggins clung onto the yellow jersey this afternoon following another showdown between the main contenders.

Today’s 157.5kilometre stage featured seven climbs, culminating in a first-category climb just 16km from the finish in the Swiss town of Porrentruy.

The final climb, which reached gradients of up to 24 per cent, reduced the main bunch to a select group of contenders for the overall classification. Bradley Wiggins, Chris Froome, Cadel Evans, Vincenzo Nibali, Denis Menchov and Jurgen Van Den Broeck were all present in the pack of 10.

But even this most elite bunch of riders failed to close the gap on Tibaut Pinot, who at 22 is the Tour’s youngest rider. The Frenchman broke away from Fredrick Kessiakoff of Astana near the final summit.

Whilst Kessiakoff was later swept up by the chasing Tour favourites, plucky Pinot couldn’t believe his luck. The impressive solo effort secured France’s first stage win of the 2012 Tour.

Team FDJ’s general manager Marc Madiot found himself screaming out of his car window like a madman - the small French team had pulled off a shock win in the world’s largest bike race.

26seconds back, the main rivals entered a psychological battle. With less than 2.5km to go, Jurgen Van Den Broeck made a break for the finish line in search of valuable seconds.

Second-placed Cadel Evans soon joined him in the hunt for the yellow jersey, all too aware that a 11 second win over Bradley Wiggins would secure the overall lead.

“Opportunities don’t come easy in this line of work,” Evans said after the race. “So when they do come, you’ve got to grab them by the neck.”

But Wiggins wasn’t giving away opportunities that easily. The Briton soon closed the sizeable gap, stalking Evans closely to the finish line to ensure that no one in the group gained a second.

The very top of the overall classification remains unchanged, but will likely see slight alteration following tomorrow’s 41.5km individual time trial.

Suggested Topics
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Caption competition
Caption competition
  • Get to the point
Latest stories from i100
Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Career Services
iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

SThree: Trainee Recruitment Consultant - Dublin

£13676.46 - £16411.61 per annum + OTE: SThree: SThree Trainee Recruitment Cons...

Ashdown Group: Marketing or Business Graduate Opportunity - Norwich - £22,000

£18000 - £22000 per annum + training: Ashdown Group: Business and Marketing Gr...

SThree: Trainee Recruitment Consultant

£20000 - £25000 per annum + Commission: SThree: Are you great at building rela...

Ashdown Group: Database Analyst - Birmingham - £22,000 plus benefits

£20000 - £22000 per annum + excellent benefits: Ashdown Group: Application Sup...

Day In a Page

Fishing for votes with Nigel Farage: The Ukip leader shows how he can work an audience as he casts his line to the disaffected of Grimsby

Fishing is on Nigel Farage's mind

Ukip leader casts a line to the disaffected
Who is bombing whom in the Middle East? It's amazing they don't all hit each other

Who is bombing whom in the Middle East?

Robert Fisk untangles the countries and factions
China's influence on fashion: At the top of the game both creatively and commercially

China's influence on fashion

At the top of the game both creatively and commercially
Lord O’Donnell: Former cabinet secretary on the election and life away from the levers of power

The man known as GOD has a reputation for getting the job done

Lord O'Donnell's three principles of rule
Rainbow shades: It's all bright on the night

Rainbow shades

It's all bright on the night
'It was first time I had ever tasted chocolate. I kept a piece, and when Amsterdam was liberated, I gave it to the first Allied soldier I saw'

Bread from heaven

Dutch survivors thank RAF for World War II drop that saved millions
Britain will be 'run for the wealthy and powerful' if Tories retain power - Labour

How 'the Axe' helped Labour

UK will be 'run for the wealthy and powerful' if Tories retain power
Rare and exclusive video shows the horrific price paid by activists for challenging the rule of jihadist extremists in Syria

The price to be paid for challenging the rule of extremists

A revolution now 'consuming its own children'
Welcome to the world of Megagames

Welcome to the world of Megagames

300 players take part in Watch the Skies! board game in London
'Nymphomaniac' actress reveals what it was really like to star in one of the most explicit films ever

Charlotte Gainsbourg on 'Nymphomaniac'

Starring in one of the most explicit films ever
Robert Fisk in Abu Dhabi: The Emirates' out-of-sight migrant workers helping to build the dream projects of its rulers

Robert Fisk in Abu Dhabi

The Emirates' out-of-sight migrant workers helping to build the dream projects of its rulers
Vince Cable interview: Charging fees for employment tribunals was 'a very bad move'

Vince Cable exclusive interview

Charging fees for employment tribunals was 'a very bad move'
Iwan Rheon interview: Game of Thrones star returns to his Welsh roots to record debut album

Iwan Rheon is returning to his Welsh roots

Rheon is best known for his role as the Bastard of Bolton. It's gruelling playing a sadistic torturer, he tells Craig McLean, but it hasn't stopped him recording an album of Welsh psychedelia
Morne Hardenberg interview: Cameraman for BBC's upcoming show Shark on filming the ocean's most dangerous predator

It's time for my close-up

Meet the man who films great whites for a living
Increasing numbers of homeless people in America keep their mobile phones on the streets

Homeless people keep mobile phones

A homeless person with a smartphone is a common sight in the US. And that's creating a network where the 'hobo' community can share information - and fight stigma - like never before