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The Omega Pharma Quick Step train
Simon Yates presses on while others abandon, Heat affects stage 13
Omega Pharma-QuickStep ready to reveal their future plans on the rest day
The second rest day is usually a day of recovery before the final mountain stages but for Omega Pharma-QuickStep, it is expected to be an important day in the team's long-term future.
The Belgian squad has invited the media and fans to its official OPQS Fan Park in Lastours au Belvedaire near Carcassone, where they will reveal "good and important news regarding the future". The venue can hold up to 250 fans, with places only available on the day.
Mark Cavendish will be at the event, despite injuring his shoulder at the end of stage 1 in Harrogate, along with all the riders competing at the Tour de France, plus the team's staff and management.
The event will end with the team's tradition Mussels party, with the Belgian delicacy offered as a rest day lunch.
Simon Yates eyeing Paris on his debut Tour
Britain's Simon Yates (Orica-GreenEdge) is hoping to make it through the Alpine stages at the Tour de France and so possible ride into the third week and possibly make it all the way to Paris.
The 21-year-old neo-pro is the youngest rider at the Tour de France but keen to try to finish his first ever Grand Boucle. His Orica-GreenEdge team is supportive of his ambitions but are monitoring his condition and will have no qualms about sending him home if he begins to suffer too much.
"I'm taking day by day but who wouldn't want to see Paris. Just to finish would be a huge achievement, so why not," he told Cyclingnews.
"I've been getting over a chesty cough that has left me struggling to breathe and so the rest day came at a perfect time. Normally I'd be looking forward to the mountains, but we'll wait and see what happens."
Chaud, chaud, chaud
Riders started stage 13 with cold bottles of water and bags of ice tucked under the neck of their jerseys to try and stay as cool as possible in the heat.
Temperatures are expected to hit 34C during the stage, with the road temperatures expected to be close 60 degrees C. Fortunately the finish in Chamrousse is at an altitude of 1730 metres and so the temperature is expected to be cooler.
Vichot, Acevedo and Navarro abandon in the Alps
The Tour de France's high mountains proved an impassable obstacle for three riders: Arthur Vichot (FDJ), Daniel Navarro (Cofidis) and Janier Acevedo (Garmin-Sharp). The three riders climbed off on the first day in the Alps.
Vicho has been ill according to Thierry Bricaud in LeTour.fr. "Arthur has been sick with bronchitis for five days. We were hoping that the heat would help him to be healthy again. Yesterday, it was difficult for him to follow the rhythm and today, the fast start has been too much. It's a pity. He would have had an important role alongside his best friend Thibaut Pinot in the coming days."
Janier Acevedo would have been a key mountain domestique for the team's general classification hopeful Andrew Talansky, but the American also dropped out of the race after struggling with back pain.