Bonjour and welcome to the Cyclingnews live coverage of stage 11.
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Bonjour and welcome to stage 11 and day 2 in the Alps.
Today the riders face just 108.5km of racing but a major part of that is climbing, with three major cols on the menu.
The official stage start is set for 2:05pm local time. As we take off in the Cyclingnews blimp, the riders are warming up on the rollers and signing on.
Today will see the first summit finish of the 2018 Tour de France, with the riders going over the Hors category Montéé de Bisanne and Col du Pré, as well as the 1968m Cat 2 Cormet de Rosalind, before finishing up at LaRosière.
Did we say three major cols? Make that four!
As you may recall, the stage covers the same route as the Critérium du Dauphiné stage in June.
It starts with a steep kick up to the Douron valley from the Olympic city of Albertville (host of the winter Games in 1992) and quickly heads to the Montée de Bisanne that has similar gradients as L'Alpe d'Huez.
That is followed by the Col du Pré (12.6km at 7.7%), unprecedented at the Tour de France but known by the participants of the Tour de l'Avenir.
It is followed by the Cormet de Roselend which has a testing and tricky descent. crash victims include Iñaki Gastón in 1992, Johan Bruyneel in 1996, Michael Rogers and Stuart O'Grady in 2007.
The final ascent to La Rosière - a ski resort linked to La Thuile in the Italian Valle d'Aosta - is also unprecedented at the Tour de France. It is not steep at 5.8 per cent but is 17km long.
A painful 45 per cent of the stage distance is on the climbs today.
Fortunately the sun is out again today, with temperatures between 25-30C today.
Riders are signing on now before lining up for the start.
The crowd is waiting to see Tuesday's stage winner to see Julian Alaphilippe in the polka-dot jersey.
Here he is.
Alaphilippe won from the breakaway yesterday to continue France's post-World Cup celebrations.
Greg van Avermaet was also there and so extended to his overall lead and kept the yellow jersey for another day.
This is the current top ten overall.
1 Greg Van Avermaet (Bel) BMC Racing Team 40:34:28
2 Geraint Thomas (GBr) Team Sky 00:02:22
3 Alejandro Valverde (Spa) Movistar Team 00:03:10
4 Jakob Fuglsang (Den) Astana Pro Team 00:03:12
5 Bob Jungels (Lux) Quick-Step Floors 00:03:20
6 Chris Froome (GBr) Team Sky 00:03:21
7 Adam Yates (GBr) Mitchelton-Scott
8 Mikel Landa (Spa) Movistar Team
9 Vincenzo Nibali (Ita) Bahrain-Merida 00:03:27
10 Primoz Roglic (Slo) LottoNL-Jumbo 00:03:36
Van Avermaet has already admitted that he expects to lose the yellow jersey today due to the four cols and the mountain finish.
Alaphillipe is on stage to sign on. He gets a special prize for his win yesterday.
"Yesterday was a day I'll never forget. Now I'll try to defend the polka-dot jersey and see what happens," Alaphilippe said at the sign-on.
France is also celebrating Pierre Latour in the best young rider's white jersey.
However he accepts that his first goal to work for team leader at AG2R Romain Bardet.
Ten minutes to the roll out!
Nairo Quintana is next to sign on. Movistar is wearing yellow helmets today as leaders of the team competition.
That makes them easy to spot in the peloton.
Peter Sagan signs on next but he is quickly away, he knows he faces a day of suffering in the mountains in the green jersey.
It will be interesting to see if he again tries to take the points at the early intermediate sprint today. It worked yesterday and he extended his points lead to 101 points on Gaviria.
Five minutes before the roll out.
As we mentioned, riders warmed-up on the rollers before signing-on.
It could be an explosive start to a very important stage.
This is UAE on the rollers.
All the riders are lined-up now. We are 1 minute from the roll out.
They face 1.7km of neutralised roads and then the 108.5km stage will be underway.
Here we go! The riders roll out from Albertville.
Good luck to one and all.
Riders are so keen to get in the break, they are edging ahed of the red race directors car.
Albertville has hosted stages in the past, with Pierre Rolland and Romain Bardet both winning stages that started in the 1992 Olympic host city.
Will a third Frenchman win today?
Team Sky also has a rider up near the team car.
Christian Prudhomme is waving his arms to the riders, trying to get them to slow down but many are all ready to attack as soon as the flag drops.
108km remaining from 108km
Here we go! The flag drops. The first attacks are made.
165 riders finished the stage yesterday and despite lots of bandages and pain, they all started today.
As we expected, Peter Sagan is in the early attacks, trying to be up front for the intermediate sprint that comes after just 11.5km.
With Sagan are Warren Barguil (Fortuneo),
Damiano Caruso (BMC),
Romain Sicard (Direct Energie) and Dani Navarro 205 (Cofidis).
100km remaining from 108km
The five are working hard together but only lead by 15 seconds. There's a group of other riders just behind them.
The peloton is 45 seconds back.
It's Dani Navarro's birthday today and he's clearly out to give himself a special birthday present.
There are 23 riders in the chase group and so it will be fascinating to see if the groups join up.
It'll be interesting to see who is the 23 and if they are there for their team leaders to attack and join forces later in the stage.
The peloton is moving fast too but is slipping to more than a minute behind the five.
96km remaining from 108km
Sagan's hard work pays off. He is first to the intermediate sprint and so takes maximum points.
Sagan picks up another 20 points. He extends his lead to 121 points on Gaviria and seems unbeatable yet again. He's set to take a record equalling six green jersey, matching Erik Zabel.
95km remaining from 108km
The peloton is at 2:28, with three groups between then and the Sagan group. We can expect groups to comeback together on the Montee de Bisanne.
Alaphilippe is in the group, chasing the front of the race, in the hope of scoring more mountain points.
Sagan has eased up and is slipping back to the peloton.
The speed is also hurting the sprinters, with Andre Greipel one of the first to be ejected from the peloton.
Finishing in the gruppetto will be vital today for the sprinters and domestiques. However the short stage means the time they are allowed to lose will be relatively short.
The points at the intermediate went as follows, indicating the quality of the riders on the attack.
1 Peter Sagan (Svk) Bora-Hansgrohe 20
2 Damiano Caruso (Ita) BMC Racing Team 17
3 Warren Barguil (Fra) Fortuneo-Samsic 15
4 Daniel Navarro Garcia (Spa) Cofidis, Solutions Credits 13
5 Romain Sicard (Fra) Direct Energie 11
6 Andrea Pasqualon (Ita) Wanty-Groupe Gobert 10
7 Serge Pauwels (Bel) Dimension Data 9
8 Philippe Gilbert (Bel) Quick-Step Floors 8
9 Jesus Herrada (Spa) Cofidis, Solutions Credits 7
10 Elie Gesbert (Fra) Fortuneo-Samsic 6
11 Tanel Kangert (Est) Astana Pro Team 5
12 Michael Valgren (Den) Astana Pro Team 4
13 Pawel Poljanski (Pol) Bora-Hansgrohe 3
14 Niki Terpstra (Ned) Quick-Step Floors 2
15 Thomas De Gendt (Bel) Lotto Soudal 1
92km remaining from 108km
Sagan now leads 339 to 218 over Gaviria in the points competition.
As expected, Team Sky is leading the peloton again, using their strength in depth to bully their rivals.
Luke Rowe and Gianni Moscon are doing the work on the front.
We can also see Tejay van Garderen (BMC) in the group of chasers behind the four leaders.
He goes with Alaphilippe with 9km to go on the climb.
Van Garderen and Alaphillippe have joined the four up front.
BMC also have Caruso up there. They clearly planning something after losing team leader Porte.
However there is a group of 38 riders coming up from behind.
The peloton is at 3:50 back.
Behind other riders are being spat out of the peloton, including Stefan Kung of BMC.
Some riders, including Mark Cavendish and other sprinters had to finish inside the time limit yesterday. They made it by a matter of seconds after finishing 34:02 down on Alaphilippe.
We had the full story on Cavendish's fight here.
Warren Barguil is setting a fast pace at the head of the race. However Tejay van Garderen seems comfortable with him.
They are all racing for the stage. Barguil is 11:50 back on the GC and so not a real threat to the GC riders.
85km remaining from 108km
The attackers are coming together as the peloton loses more terrain. The break is 3.5km from the support now.
There appears to be little wind out on the climbs today.
Yesterday it as given as the reason why it was futile for the GC riders to attack, so perhaps we will see sone fireworks today.
We now have 20 riders in the front group.
To stay up to date with the names and time gaps, check out our Situation on the right on the live desk top page or below the latests update on mobile.
From the top of the Montee de Bisanne there's a great view of Mont Blanc. However the riders will have little time to enjoy the views as they dive down the descent to Beaufort.
83km remaining from 108km
Darwin Atapuma is the latest to get across to the gap and take a ticket in the breakaway.
These are the 22 riders up front.
Julian Alaphilippe (Quick-Step Floors), Warren Barguil and Amaël Moinard (Fortuneo-Samsic), Romain Sicard and Rein Taaramäe (Direct Energie), Damiano Caruso and Tejay van Garderen (BMC Racing Team), Anthony Perez and, Daniel Navarro Garcia (Cofidis, Solutions Credits), Mikel Nieve Ituralde (Mitchelton-Scott), Mathias Frank (AG2R La Mondiale), Gorka Izagirre Insausti (Bahrain-Merida), Marc Soler (Movistar Team), Toms Skujins (Trek-Segafredo), Michael Valgren Andersen and Tanel Kangert (Astana Pro Team), Thomas De Gendt and Tomasz Marczynski (Lotto Soudal), Pawel Poljanski (Bora-Hansgrohe), Serge Pauwels (Dimension Data), Darwin Atapuma (UAE Team Emirates)
The fast start to the stage is hurting even some of the GC riders.
Bauke Mollema (Trek) is at the back of the peloton. The Dutchman lost almost a minute to his GC rivals.
82km remaining from 108km
Et Voila! Alaphilippe accelerates to cross the summit first and take maximum points.
Others riders are just a few seconds behind, with the peloton at 5:30.
77km remaining from 108km
Alaphillippe scored 20 KOM points and so extends his lead in the mountains competition.
France historically falls in love with any French polka-dot wearer and Alaphilippe is already being touted as the next Richard Virenque.
Alaphilippe is also the 50th French rider to lead the competition.
74km remaining from 108km
Team Sky and the peloton are on the descent, with Froome quick to dig into his pockets for some race food.
The peloton is 6:00 back.
Barguil, Alaphilippe and De Gendt have edged clear on the descent but the 26 chasers are only 30 seconds behind them.
They will soon begin the Col du Pre'. It is 12.6km long at 7.7%. Ouch!
The Col du Pre' is the first part of a double whammy, with a short descent leading to the Cormet de Roselend (5.7% at 6.5).
64km remaining from 108km
De Gendt and Alaphilippe seem keen to ride but Barguil is on his race radio asking for info.
The official signs indicate 12.6km of climbing to the summit.
This is what the riders face for the next hour or so.
61km remaining from 108km
The peloton is also on the valley road now, with its size swelling as riders close the gap and fins safety in numbers.
In the peloton the GC teams are again riding in convoy to protect their team leaders.
According to @tourdata Cavendish (Dimension Data) and his teammates Thomson and Vermote were the last riders to summit Montée de Bisanne, after averaging 13.4km/h in the climb.
They lost half a minute per kilometre compared to the peloton.
The three up front have been joined by the chasers to form a big group of 30 riders.
The peloton is 6:00 back.
We can expect Team Sky to let the break stay away but they will no doubt also try to crack some of their GC rivals on the long climb.
Serge Pauwels is in the front group and so is the virtual race leader now. He is 5:12 down on van Avermaet but will have to dig deep and fight all day to take yellow.
These are the riders up front in the break.
Pierre Rolland (Fra) EF Education First-Drapac
Mathias Frank (Swi) AG2R La Mondiale
Søren Kragh Andersen (Den) Team Sunweb
Warren Barguil (Fra) Fortuneo-Samsic
Maxime Bouet (Fra) Fortuneo-Samsic
Elie Gesbert (Fra) Fortuneo-Samsic
Amael Moinard (Fra) Fortuneo-Samsic
Gorka Izagirre (Spa) Bahrain-Merida
Mikel Nieve (Spa) Mitchelton-Scott
Marc Soler (Spa) Movistar Team
Damiano Caruso (Ita) BMC Racing Team
Stefan Küng (Swi) BMC Racing Team
Tejay van Garderen (USA) BMC Racing
Darwin Atapuma (Col) UAE Team Emirates
Julian Alaphilippe (Fra) Quick-Step Floors
Pawel Poljanski (Pol) Bora-Hansgrohe
Tanel Kangert (Est) Astana Pro Team
Michael Valgren (Den) Astana Pro Team
Serge Pauwels (Bel) Dimension Data
Rudy Molard (Fra) Groupama-FDJ
Arthur Vichot (Fra) Groupama-FDJ
Thomas De Gendt (Bel) Lotto Soudal
Tomasz Marczynski (Pol) Lotto Soudal
Jerome Cousin (Fra) Direct Energie
Romain Sicard (Fra) Direct Energie
Rein Taaramäe (Est) Direct Energie
Toms Skujins (Lat) Trek-Segafredo
Daniel Navarro Garcia (Spa) Cofidis
Anthony Perez (Fra) Cofidis
Guillaume Martin (Fra) Wanty-Groupe Gobert
Cavendish has been timed at 12:30 back, with two teammates. He finished 33 seconds inside the time limit yesterday and will have to fight again to survive today.
57km remaining from 108km
With 6km to the summit if the Col du Pre, Barguil's Fortuneo teammates are setting a fast pace in the break to spit out some of their rivals. It is working.
56km remaining from 108km
Now Movistar pick up the pace at the head of the peloton.
Bennati and Landa take over from Sky, while Marc Soler drops back from the front group.
Race on? Perhaps.
The increase in pace has cracked race leader Greg van Avermaet. He's surely going to lose yellow today.
He took yellow when BMC won the TTT and so has been in yellow for 8 stages.
Amador has joined Landa up front. But behind Uran is suffering. He's been dropped.
Uran is already 100m back and seems to have told his teammates to leave him.
He hurt his left knee in a crash on the Roubaix stage.
Bauke Mollema is also suffering.
Valverde accelerates away, 3.6km from the summit of the Col du Pre.
Valverde can team up with Soler soon.
For now there is no reaction from Team Sky and the other 30 or so riders in the GC peloton.
53km remaining from 108km
Soler will have to stay with Valverde and then help him on the valley road to the foot of the Cormet de Roselend.
At last Movistar seems to be showing its a tactical hand.
Are Quitana and Landa the protected team leaders, with Valverde sent up the road to test Sky's strength?
We will soon find out.
This photo from Trek shows Mollema suffering with Bob Jungles. Both are likely to lose a chunk of time today.
Rafal Majka (Bora) is also suffering and losing contact with the GC group.
The mountains are revealing the real weaknesses amongst the GC guys now.
52km remaining from 108km
The summit of the Col du Pre also gives stunning views across to Mont Blanc. It tops out at 1748m with the Roselend at 1968m.
51km remaining from 108km
13 riders remain upfront in the break after the Fortuneo forcing.
Behind Valverde joins Soler. They lead the GC peloton by 2:15.
Barguil is first to the summit of the Col du Pre after his teammates cracked Alaphilippe.
Valverde and Soler lead the GC group by around a minute rather than two. However they are pulling away from Team Sky as they taken on the race.
Soler is giving his all to help Valverde.
Jonathan Castroviejo was leading the peloton but now other riders take over as Sky share some food.
Moscon has already been dropped, leaving four Sky riders up front: Froome, Thomas, Poels and Castroviejo.
The peloton reach the summit of the Col du Pre 5:00 after Barguil.
46km remaining from 108km
Valverde and Soler are 1:20 ahead.
The peloton rides along the edge of the spectacular Roselend dam.
The Alps offer an incredible backdrop every July.
42km remaining from 108km
Valverde leads the GC peloton by 2:00 now. He is already virtual race leader with van Avermaet dropped. He is only 48 seconds down on Thomas on GC.
Adam Yates drops back on the flat plateau road to the foot of the Col de Roselend.
Moscon is back working for Team Sky after carefully pacing his effort on the climb and then getting back on during the descent.
Up front Gesbert and Moinard are still doing a great job for Barguil by setting a fast pace.
The GC peloton is 4:45 back but Barguil has a great chance of staying away and winning the stage.
Sky has strength in depth but now Bahrain take over for Nibali. Pellizotti is on the front with Nibali in his slipstream.
Has Nibali spotted a weakness amongst his GC rivals?
He could try his hand on the descent of the Roselend, which is very technical. The Sicilian saw it during the Dauphine.
39km remaining from 108km
Soler is giving his all for Valverde. They lead the peloton by 1:30 or so now as the summit of the Roselend nears.
Soler and Valverde are suffering in the strong cross wind near the summit.
Barguil skips clear to summit first and take another 20 points.
36km remaining from 108km
Valverde and Soler reach the summit 2:00 behind the break.
The GC group is 1:15 behind Valverde, with just 20 or os riders left in the front GC group.
Greg van Avermaet is timed some 10:00 back and so is going to lose yellow today.
This was the virtual GC calculated on Geraint Thomas.
Valverde needs to finish 48 seconds ahead of the Welshman.
The riders are now on the 19km descent of the Roselend.
The first part is wide and fast, the lower part in the tree is far more technical. It could be perfect for an attack. From Nibali perhaps?
Were getting reports that some of the sprinters are suffering and are well off the back.
Marcel Kittel is apparently 21 minutes off the pace and riding alone, while Mark Cavendish is 34 back.
They could finish outside of the time limit at the finish.
The main gruppetto is some 17 minutes back. We believe the time limit at the finish will be around 30 minutes.
36km remaining from 108km
Matthias Frank is reported to have crashed on the descent. Initial reports say he is okay and riding again.
Frank is passed by Valverde and Soler. It's good to see he is not injured.
21km remaining from 108km
Here we go! Dumoulin is on the attack on the descent!
21km remaining from 108km
Here we go! Dumoulin is on the attack on the descent!
Dumoulin and teammate Søren Kragh Andersen lead by ten seconds or so.
20km remaining from 108km
There are five riders left up front, with Valverde and Soler 2:25 behind. The GC peloton is at 3:10, with Dumoulin just ahead of them.
It is time to start the last climb up to the finish in La Rosiere.
The La Rosiere is 17.6km long at 5.8% but with several steepers sections mid-climb.
This is the climb to the finish.
Dumoulin leads the peloton by 30 seconds or so and is closing in on Valverde.
This could be interesting. How will Team Sky ride now?
15km remaining from 108km
Soler has been gapped after Dumoulin and Søren Kragh Andersen catch Valverde.
Team Sky have five riders on the front of the peloton. They will probably need all of them to pull back Valverde and Dumoulin.
Dumoulin and Valverde lead the GC Sky group by 40 seconds.
Up front Barguil, Nieve, Caruso and Valgren are racing for the stage victory.
13km remaining from 108km
Some riders are chasing them with Dumoulin and Valverde at 2:10.
Sky is leading the GC group at 30 seconds or so. Poels is leading, with Castroviejo, Bernal, Kwaitkowski and then Froome and Thomas.
Dan Martin is sat behind the Sky express.
Poels moves over and Castroviejo takes over the pacing.
Dumoulin waves for Valverde to come through but the Spaniard says no.
Is he tired or follow team orders? Perhaps Landa or Quintana will launch an attack if Valverde is pulled back.
Nibali is also behind Sky, in a GC group of 30 riders or so.
Bardet, Fuglsang are also there.
10km remaining from 108km
The La Rosiere climb is fast but the two steep sections could inspire attacks. They come now and again with 5km to go.
9km remaining from 108km
Kwiatkowski takes over on the front for Sky as Valverde is dropped by Dumoulin.
Up front Nieve attacks as Navarro catches the break.
8km remaining from 108km
Behind Yates cracks and is distanced. Nieve must have been given the green light to go for the stage today.
Barguil is suffering but Caruso is chasing Nieve in the hope of winning the stage.
Sky sweep up Valverde. He clearly wasn't a tactical support for Landa or Quintana. He simply did not have the legs to go with Dumoulin.
Dumoulin remains 40 seconds ahead as he rides a solo mountain time trial to try to gain time on his GC rivals.
Behind Zakarin is dropped, as is Valverde. He used a lot of energy with his attack.
We now know that the rider caught up in the Operacion Puerto doping scandal is not a team leader at Movistar.
Also going out the back is Jakob Fuglsang of Astana.
6km remaining from 108km
Dumoulin catches Barguil and Navarro. He could win the stage if he holds this pace.
With the current time gaps, Geraint Thomas will be the new yellow jersey.
Landa is also swinging off the back of the Sky GC group now.
Kwaito is giving his all to keep the pace high.
Caruso and Herrada of Cofidis are 35 seconds down on Nieve, with Dumoulin at 60 seconds.
The Sky peloton is at 1:20. But Bernal has been dropped.
As the road eases, Thomas attacks!
5km remaining from 108km
Froome marks his rivals and does not chase.
Thomas has a 200m lead as Bardet tries to jump across.
Now Froome goes!
Bardet and Quintana get onto him, so they ease up.
Dumoulin catches Caruso and Herrada but Thomas is close to catching them.
Nibali is suffering as Froome goes again but he's marked again.
3km remaining from 108km
Thomas is with Dumoulin and Caruso.
Behind Martin attacks and Froome goes with him.
Bardet tries to attack and go across but the finale is very tactical.
Martin is giving it 100% with Froome on his wheel.
3km remaining from 108km
Nieve is still alone up the road but leads Dumoulin, Thomas and Caruso by just 30 seconds.
Martin and Froome are just 30 seconds back.
2km remaining from 108km
Bardet tries to up the speed and chase after Froome and Martin. Nibali, Quintana, Roglic and Kruijswijk are with him.
Landa has been dropped after all the attacks.
1km remaining from 108km
Bardet and others are 50 seconds down on Dumoulin and Thomas, 30 on Martin and Froome.
Froome drops Martin with an acceleration. He's about to join Thomas and Dumoulin.
Thomas attacks! No gifts! Even to his teammate.
Thomas catches Nieve with 300m to go!
Thomas wins the stage and will take yellow!
Nieve is caught by Froome and Dumoulin too.
Dumoulin sprints to take second, Froome is third.
Martin finishes 27 seconds back in sixth.
Bardet, Nibali and Quintana finish 1:03 down on Thomas.
The stage has shaken up the GC massively.
Landa finished 1:45 down.
This is the top ten, with Thomas the new race leader.
1 Geraint Thomas (GBr) Team Sky 3:29:36
2 Tom Dumoulin (Ned) Team Sunweb 0:00:20
3 Chris Froome (GBr) Team Sky 0:00:20
4 Damiano Caruso (Ita) BMC Racing Team 0:00:22
5 Mikel Nieve (Spa) Mitchelton-Scott 0:00:22
6 Daniel Martin (Irl) UAE Team Emirates 0:00:27
7 Jesus Herrada (Spa) Cofidis, Solutions Credits 0:00:57
8 Romain Bardet (Fra) AG2R La Mondiale 0:00:59
9 Vincenzo Nibali (Ita) Bahrain-Merida 0:00:59
10 Nairo Quintana (Col) Movistar Team 0:00:59
General classification after stage 11
1 Geraint Thomas (GBr) Team Sky 44:06:16
The top ten shows that Thomas gained 20 seconds on Dumoulin and Froome, with Martin at 27 seconds.
Bardet, Nibali and Quintana finished 59 second down.
What a stage! The big questions now are:
Who is the leader at Team Sky?
Was Thomas' first attack and his late attack when Froome was near part of a strategy or was it improvised?
This is the new general classification after stage 11
1 Geraint Thomas (GBr) Team Sky 44:06:16
2 Chris Froome (GBr) Team Sky 0:01:25
3 Tom Dumoulin (Ned) Team Sunweb 0:01:44
4 Vincenzo Nibali (Ita) Bahrain-Merida 0:02:14
5 Primoz Roglic (Slo) LottoNL-Jumbo 0:02:23
6 Steven Kruijswijk (Ned) LottoNL-Jumbo 0:02:40
7 Mikel Landa (Spa) Movistar Team 0:02:56
8 Romain Bardet (Fra) AG2R La Mondiale 0:02:58
9 Nairo Quintana (Col) Movistar Team 0:03:16
10 Daniel Martin (Irl) UAE Team Emirates 0:03:16
Nieve is clearly gutted not to stay away and win the stage.
Geraint Thomas admits that his attack was improvised due to Sky being down to just three riders.
Geraint Thomas (Team Sky) stage 11 winner and overall race leader spoke post-stage before pulling in the yellow jersey.
"It is unreal and I didn't expect it at all," he said.
"We were low on number and so it was more instinct, when I went, it was so that we didn't get caught out and have to ride. I got a little gap and then Froomey could follow the other guys."
"I committed and got across to [Tom] Dumoulin and was able to sit on because Froomey was coming across. I could see Frosty [Mikel Nieve], and it's a shame, but I had to go for that win because it was super nice."
Sky DS Portal has admitted that Thomas' attack was not planned. He plays down any rivalry.
Thomas said he knew there was a chance of taking the yellow jersey.
"I knew there was a good chance, obviously, but I didn't know how anyone else was going to ride," he said.
"To wear the yellow jersey is always a massive honour. I managed to do it last year, and to do it two years in a row is really nice."
Thomas confirmed that Team Sky was expecting attacks.
"Yes we were expecting attacks. When they go it is never nice to see them all riding away but we had confidence in each other and we rode really well," he said.
This is the second mountain stage in the Alps.
On Thursday they climb three major cols, and finish on L'Alpe d'Huez. After today's attacks, who knows what will happen on the legendary hairpins.
Meanwhile on the podium, Geraint Thomas celebrates his mountain stage victory and pulls on the yellow jersey.
He's worn it before of course but this is very, very different. He is now in yellow and leads Froome by 1:25.
Looking down the stage results we can see that Bauke Mollema (Trek) lost 11 minutes today.
Alejandro Valverde won the most aggressive rider prize for his attack but his Movistar team was exposed today and now Quintana is the team's only team leader with a chance of a podium place.
Rafal Majka (Bora) also lost 10 minutes today.
This is our first image of Thomas winning the stage after his late attack.
Our man Barry Ryan is at the finish line and has said that Mark Cavendish finished out side the time cut.
A final decision on if he allowed to race on or is set hime will be made by the race judges.
Riders were sprinting to the line to make the time cut.
It seem that double stage winner Dylan Groenwegen made it.
Fernando Gaviria had no problems making the finish but w'ere hearing that Mark Cavendish is still some four kilometres from the finish.
This is another shot of Thomas finishing the stage and celebrating his victory and taking the leader's yellow jersey.
It seems that Marcel Kittel (Katusha) also finished outside the time limit.
Kittel finished 12 seconds outside the time limit.
This is Geraint Thomas in the yellow jersey. He has to autograph several jerseys after the podium ceremony.
Chris Froome spoke briefly post stage. He confirmed that Thomas' attack was not part of the pre-race plan.
"It's an amazing position for us, I don't think we quite expected that going into today's stage. I think initially everybody thought Alpe d'Huez would be the more decisive and it very well still could be. It puts us in a fantastic position going into tomorrow's stage," Froome told Eurosport.
"I think it was a spur of the moment thing but it made sense, it was perfect. We didn't even have to talk, it was the right thing for G to do and push on there. I let the wheel go because I knew it would put the onus on the rest of the guys to chase."
Froome also explained the attacks in the finale.
"Dan Martin put in a big acceleration, I was surprised I was the only one that held on to his wheel but Dan's ridden really well, I think he's trying to make up time as well from when he crashed and lost a bit of time," Froome said.
"I think the main guy who stands out as a bit of a threat right now is Tom Dumoulin, he rode a very impressive stage today I guess it depends on how everyone is going to back up tomorrow because tomorrow is a really big stage."
And the tactics for tomorrow's stage to L'Alpe d'Huez?
"You'll have to wait and see."
Rik Zabel was the Katusha rider who tried to sprint home. However he was one second outside he time limit.
What a race! What a stage!
Click here for our stage report, full results and photo gallery for more details.
The official results have confirmed that Marcel Kittel (Katusha), Mark Renshaw and Mark Cavendish (Dimension Data) have all finished outside the time limit and so have been excluded from the Tour de France.
Cavendish finished 1:05 down, that's more than 30 minutes down on the time limit of 31:27.
Cavendish was given a huge cheer by the crowd when he reached the finish. He had the broom wagon behind him but bravely finished the stage even if he knew he had no chance of making the time cut.
This is a shot of Chris Froome and Tom Dumoulin fighting it out for second place.
The Dutchman hit the line first to take the six-second time bonus.
Click here for more information on Marcel Kittel and Mark Cavendish finishing outside the time cut.
The Katusha team have confirmed that Rik Zabel was shown clemency by the race jury. He sprint to the finish but was only a few seconds outside the time limit and so was included in the results.
Chris Froome named Dumoulin as Team Sky's biggest rival now.
The Dutchman rode away from Valverde and is up to third overall, 1:44 down on Thomas.
As the dust settles on the stage and sun sets on the Alps, it will take some time to analyse what happened today and what it means.
Thomas is the new race leader but what does that mean for Chris Froome as leader at Team Sky as he targets a fifth Tour de France win?
Can Thomas win the Tour? Can anyone else stop Team Sky?
For now Thomas is in yellow and will no doubt worry about any problems later tonight and tomorrow.
Thanks for joining us for full live coverage of the stage.
Click here for a full stage report, full results and photo gallery.
We'll have rider interviews, reaction and race analysis very soon.
We'll have full live coverage of stage 12 of the Tour de France from Bourg-Saint-Maurice to L'Alpe d'Huez on Thursday.
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