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Mixed fortunes for Team Sky on the road to Ajaccio

By:
Stephen Farrand
Published:
July 1, 2013, 09:40,
Updated:
July 1, 2013, 17:08
Edition:
Third Edition Cycling News, Sunday, June 30, 2013
Race:
Tour de France
Christopher Froome (Sky)

Christopher Froome (Sky)

  • Christopher Froome (Sky)
  • Chris Froome (Team Sky) put in an attack
  • Geraint Thomas of Sky looked uncomfortable as he crossed the finish line

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Froome attacks on final climb but Thomas and Stannard suffer

Team Sky had plenty to smile about after stage 2 of the Tour de France to Ajaccio with Edvald Boasson Hagen finishing fifth and Chris Froome going on the attack in the finale. However there was also concern about Geraint Thomas and Ian Stannard, who finished in the gruppetto and in pain following their crash on stage 1.

Froome jumped away on the Cote du Salario, just 12km from the finish. He went in pursuit of Cyril Gautier and then eased up on the descent to avoid any risks.

"With that little climb about 10km from the finish - I knew the descent was tricky and dangerous," said Froome.

“I was on the front with Richie, and I thought it might be a good time, just to push on a little bit, get ahead and take the descent at my own pace and stay out of trouble," Froome said after warming down and recovering on the rollers overlooking the Mediterranean.

"It's always good to keep people on their toes," he said with a smile.

"The main objective for us was to stay out of trouble today, stay at the front, and not lose any time to the main contenders," he said.  "Eddie (Boasson Hagen) was there at the end and was given the freedom to have a go at the sprint, and he ended up with fifth. All-in-all it was a good stage for us, having kept our places on the GC and allowing Eddie to give it a go."

A painful day for Thomas and Stannard

Froome is 18th in the general classification, one second down on new race leader and stage winner Jan Bakelants (Radioshack-Leopard). He is well placed for Monday's tough stage to Calvi and Tuesday's team time trial in Nice.

The ride from Bastia to Ajaccio was not so pleasant for several of Froome's teammates. Thomas, Stannard, David Lopez and Kanstantsin Siutsou all finished in the gruppetto with the sprinters, 17:35 behind.

Thomas hurt his left hip when he crashed at speed in the finale of stage 1. He gritted his teeth and suffered during the stage, finishing 196th, one place behind Stannard.

“It felt like an eternity I was out there for,” Thomas said.

"I remember flipping straight over and landing straight on my back. I didn’t slide or anything so it was a difficult fall. It wasn’t like I was in a bad position. I didn’t think it was really bad as in broken bones. But it took a while to get up."

His injuries made it difficult for the Welshman to sleep and ride his bike.

“It’s not cut, so I can kind of lie on it. It just [hurts] if you move or roll onto your side. It’s mainly [hurting] when you are bending or pushing it – like riding your bike."

Stannard admitted it had been a tough day but tried to stay optimistic.

"Hopefully it’s only up from here. "Yesterday was pretty flat but turned out to be more difficult than we wanted. Today wasn’t easy and tomorrow is going to be a lot harder for sure. That said we're still looking forward to the rest of the race."

 

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CanadaSJRA More than 1 year ago
They'll feel worse tomorrow. Then it'll start to get better. 2nd day after a fall always hurts the most.
ellenbrook2001 More than 1 year ago
what an idiot that FROOM what he try too do his the boss or what very disappointing the way he ride maybe he was expecting too win solo with 5 minutes a can see his body full of energy what are they giving too him work great?
Uncle_Tod More than 1 year ago
They must be giving him something you're not getting, an education.
straumoy More than 1 year ago
what is your problem?
Long Rider More than 1 year ago
Incoherent as usual, are you off your meds again????
Crampandgoslow More than 1 year ago
Perhaps you should try expressing your thoughts in your native language? I dunno, I think there's more risk going downhill with others than climbing unless he's a bad descender.
chewi666 More than 1 year ago
The inane ramblings of ellenbrook - instead of posting this drivel why don't you post something constructive? Maybe he's full of energy as he's been bulding up to this for the whole season, just like Nibali did with the Giro. So are you saying that when someone attacks... ever... they must be on something.
cthenn More than 1 year ago
He's just toying with everyone, he must already be getting bored. When he chooses to attack, he'll put in 2' on the field with ease...just be sure to stick your tongue out to let everyone know it's hard crushing everyone with ease!
Pedal Pusher More than 1 year ago
Evans stayed out of trouble too but didn't need to ride away from team mates to ensure he ascended safely!
DaleUK More than 1 year ago
When Sky do not attack everyone moans they are boring, when Froome does attack people on here moan its 'futile and dissapointing', comments on here read like a joke.
bikerbruce More than 1 year ago
Sorry Dale. I wasn't aware that you could hear my moan. Although I was being mildly critical, I understand the objective is to win, even if it means a procession as predictable as Big Mig first employed. Really, I just was making an observation and for a team so calculated, it seemed a waste of energy to attack when a massive effort would gain minimum time, if any. Lysysloik's assertion is a byproduct. But from my observation, Froome put in a massive effort to catch the lone leader in hopes of working together to the finish and gain a few seconds. Froome has an abundance of energy, is incredibly prepared, and wants the prize more than any other.
longshadow More than 1 year ago
Wiggins now on his 9th pint. Pub staying open for 3 weeks.
Raoul Duke More than 1 year ago
Sinatra's "give me one more for my baby, and another one for the road" playing softly in the background