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Tour de France stage 16 - Live coverage


Hello and welcome back to our live race coverage from the Tour de France. I hope you're all rested from your day off and that you're ready for another blockbuster day in the mountains as we head from La Tour-du-Pin to Villard-de-Lans. 164km and five categorised climbs, it's another day for the GC riders.

We are about an hour away from the roll out with the official start scheduled for just a few minutes after that. Riders are currently signing on but the big news is that all the tests have come back negative for COVID-19. Not a single positive at the Tour, which remarkable but welcome news. This means that we should finish in Paris on Sunday. Here's our story on the tests. Remember we have four positives last week, five if you include grand fromage, Christian Prudhomme. 

Looking at today's stage, Procycling have described it as 'rugged', which is about right. It's a Gerard Butler of Tour de France stages, except it's probably got more depth to it when it comes to possible performance. 

And someone in GC always comes out of the second rest day with bad legs, and that will be exploited on a stage like this, especially as we should expect a lightening quick start as Peter Sagan goes all out on the first climb in a bit to drop Bennett and take points at the intermediate sprint that comes just before the main climbs. Not to be controversial but the  battle for green has been more entertaining than the race for yellow until this point in the race.

While we wait for the race to start, why not listen to the CN podcast? We looked back at the GC, whats' happened with Bernal, the Jungels/Higuita crash, and then ask the question 'when is the right time to ask doping questions?' after a couple of moral compasses on Twitter had the temerity to raise concern over the yellow jersey being asked about credibility. Here's the podcast

Meanwhile, we're about 35 minutes from the roll out with riders still signing on and doing the odd interview in the mix zone. Roglic has just ridden by and he's still in yellow and holding a 40-second advantage over Pogacar. Here's what the Jumbo rider had to say on the second rest-day.

If you've been living in a cave for the last few weeks, or maybe just engrossed with Gerard Butler films, I dunno, maybe you've missed that we've created a Procycling section on the homepage. It's full of content from the mag, and the team are writing wonderful analysis stories after each stage. Go here, and check it out. And then subscribe with this amazing offer.

We can see Bernal leaving the Ineos bus and heading to the start area. Late last night his team released a video in which he talked about his GC collapse on stage 15 and how he plans to come back stronger next season and win the Tour. It will be interesting to see how Ineos race over the next few days, as they adjust and look for stage wins in order to salvage their race. 

And there's Bennett (S), in green as he rides to the start line as well. The Irishman should ride into Paris and take green but Sagan will probably throw everything at him today ahead of the intermediate sprint. 

Sagan also spoke on the rest-day via Zoom.

Looking at the profile of the stage, it's almost uphill from the very start as the riders tackle an uncategorized climb. Then it's that short 4th cat Côte de Virieu. We're going to have attacks from the gun and it will be interesting to see if Bennett lets Sagan go up the road or if the Irishman spends energy on trying to chase things down with the use of his QuickStep team.

We're just about 10 minutes away from the roll out and most of the peloton are making their way to the startline. Prudhomme is back at the race after a week of isolation but no sign of him just yet.

Tom Dumoulin also chatted away on the rest day. The Dutch rider, who currently sits in 10th on GC had this to say on the GC battle:

“My expectations are that we’ll be as strong in the last week as we were in the first week,” Dumoulin said on the second rest day of the Tour de France.

“I think that we have a super strong team, the strongest team in the whole Tour de France. We have been very dominant and we have the yellow jersey. We have the strength to control the race but we also have to be smart with our strength. Of course it all depends on Primoz being the best guy in the Tour in the third week. It all depends on that, eventually.”

GC standings

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We're just heading out now, through the neutralized zone on stage 16 of the Tour de France. Stay with us for complete live coverage from the race throughout the stage.

Lets see who is on the front as that's a giveaway in term of who wants to be in the break. The KOM leader is there, and Sagan and Bennett, as we see Bernal is near the back and chatting with Chaves. Griepel is near the front but surely he's not going on the attack today. It would be nice to see, we've not seen a lot of the veteran in the race so far. And there's Prudhomme, waving his arms from the sunroof as we continue through the neutralized zone.

Conditions, perfect, 28 degrees, blue skies and very little wind out there right now. 

Van Baarle is near the front and so is Pinot, and we could expect both of those riders to go on the attack. Van Baarle won a mountain stage in the Dauphine last year, after all but we could see Ineos send a few riders up the road today.

Just under 3km to go until Prudhomme stands up again and starts the stage as we see Ewan just at the back of the peloton as he settles in for complete survival mode. 

Kevin Reza is also near the front and he's been on the attack already, having been in break during the first week. He can make it over the early climbs and could be crucial in setting up one of his teammates. Rolland for the KOM points, perhaps?

Bernal is right at the back and on his own, so a day of recovery and contemplation for last year's winner. If it's a back injury it's hard to see him trying to win a stage as it's unlikely to improve without complete rest, but lets see. Van Baarle is still right at the front, as we see D Martin right at the back. Today would have  been a good one for him. 

Tony Martin moves up and he'll chase down anything dangerous as we see Luke Rowe next to him. Prudhomme gets on the mic, waves a flag and we're off on stage 16 of the Tour de France. We're already climbing.

And it is Van Baarle who goes first with Asgreen on his wheel. In fact there are about 30 riders on his wheel as Pacher goes next. Classy little rider is the Frenchman.

Already some big gaps as we look back but Pacher is clear, and ahead of a group of around 30 as we continue to climb. This is a brutal way to start a race after a rest day. 

The bunch reform on a short descent but Pacher has about 8 seconds on the peloton. Bennett is just marking Sagan's every move a five more riders clip off the front.

Van Avermaet is leading a small group but the race is about to come back together, although it's already stretched out. Powless is also up there but Movistar are marking him.

Sivakov goes and Alaphilippe is on his wheel. Then the Frechman goes for a second time and he has a small gap almost immediately. Chaves is chasing and so too his Trentin and Sagan. Team Sunweb then toss a rider up the road and he joins Alphilippe. It's none stop attacking, with Trentin attacking on this 4th cat climb.

153km to go and it's all back together but off the back, Gaudu is suffering as we see Sivakov try again. Sorry we're just over that unclassified climb, the 4th cat is still to come.

Pinot is attacking but Sivakov is trying to match every move at the moment but with 157km we have a huge group of about 25 off the front with Mitchelton driving the pace on the descent. This group is too big, so it's going to kick off again on the climb that's coming up.

Is Sagan in the move? That's the question. Pinot, and Carapaz are both there but the gap is at 31 seconds.

Right now Bora are leading the break and the peloton. 

No Sagan or Bennett in the front group as we see GVA leading a counter attack. Alaphilippe is currently driving the break at the moment as Bauer takes a turn for Chaves. The gap is up to 45 seconds ad this move could be quite dangerous. Kung is there for Pinot too.

1km to go on the climb and the total number in the  break is 35 as Bora lead the chase at the front of the peloton. This hasn't gone to plan for Sagan as we see Ewan being dropped from the back of the peloton. 

There are too many riders in the break but this could get interesting for Sagan if he can go clear and join the leaders because he has men up the road as we see the Bora leader look back to see Bennett on his wheel. The gap is down to 30 seconds.

Now Jumbo Visma have moved up and started to set the pace. They're chasing things down right now as Cofidis and Rolland try and hit them hard. There's no control and Wout Van Aert is forced to the front already. The gap is down to 14 seconds, so it's all coming back.

149km to go and it's briefly back together but immediately Ineos and Cofidis try and jump clear. Ineos are making this really hard for Jumbo Visma but once more Van Aert pushes on the pedals and closes it all down. 

Carapaz and Roche are the next to ping off the front with 146km to go. 

They have quality in their legs but they need more firepower from the bunch as the gap holds at 8 seconds.

Sagan has gone and Bennett has to make a huge effort because he was caught napping and let Sagan's wheel go. He closes the move down. Just.

Carapaz and Roche have just been joined bit a large group that includes Trentin and Alaphilippe. Bora have a couple of riders in the move and they have 17 seconds. Barguil is there, Bettiol too. Movistar have two riders as well, so too do Ineos.

140km to go and the gap is up to 25 seconds and it will be interesting to see who chases this down. Jumbo have moved up and they might let this one go.

The only rider intent on shutting this down is KOM leader Benoit Cosnefroy but he's left it too late. But now Chaves attacks. The gap is only 26 seconds but there are more attacks. This is relentless. 

131km to go

There is a chase group at 47 seconds but they're going to find it hard to make it to the leaders. We're still 10km from the intermediate as once again we see attacks from the peloton.

There was some calm in the bunch but ISN missed the move so they fire two riders up the road. 129km to go.

George Bennett is now forced into marking moves as AG2R go again. We're not on a classified climb but the road  is still rolling and these little digs are slowly hurting the bunch. Right at the back we see Bernal hanging on with Dan Martin.

Sivakov leads another massive attack from the front and that will close the gap on the chasing group that includes Bauer and Boasson Hagen. Hirschi attacks with 126km to go.

Hirschi reaches the second group as more and more riders go on the attack. Other than Bernal and D Martin I think everyone has attacked now.

Jumbo are back on the  front and Robert Gesink take control. Jumbo just want a steady pace so that everything just settles down. They don't mind the 15 up the road going clear but they don't want any more accelerations but Rolland didn't get the memo and he's attacked. 

And there's another wave of attacks, with a group containing three EF Pro Cycling riders jumping away, having taken the lead from Rolland.

Rolland is 57 seconds behind the leaders but now we see two Sunweb riders attacking in tandem. At the intermediate Trentin takes the maximum of 20 points. 

Rolland has been caught by Pedersen and Benoot from Sunweb with 118km to go as we hear that Gaudu has quit the race. 

All of this means that Sagan and Bennett don't pick up any points. So that's a win for Bennett in the green jersey competition. 

115km to go and finally the bunch sit up for a natural break as the gap goes out to 2'21. That should allow Ewan a chance to come back because he lost three minutes in that first hour of racing.

We're about to start climbing even though we're well off the next climb of the Col de Porte. The gap to the leading 15 is at 3'16 but there are still several chase groups in between them and the peloton.

Mads Pedersen, the current world champion, has sent in his latest blog from the Tour and you can read it, right here.

A reminder of the 15 leaders:

Andrey Amador, Richard Carapaz (Ineos Grenadiers), Lennard Kämna, Daniel Oss (Bora-Hansgrohe), Julian Alaphilippe (Deceuninck-Quick Step), Sébastien Reichenbach (Groupama-FDJ), Alberto Bettiol (EF Education First), Winner Anacona, Warren Barguil (Arkéa-Samsic), Imanol Erviti, Carlos Verona (Movistar Team), Matteo Trentin (CCC Team), Chris Juul Jensen (Mitchelton-Scott), Nicholas Roche (Team Sunweb), and Quentin Pacher (B&B Hotels-Vital Concept). 

At the front of the peloton Tony Martin is just tapping out a steady but manageable pace.

Rolland and the two Sunweb riders are at 35 seconds and they can just about see the 15 leaders up ahead. The bunch are now at 5'14.

Rolland and Benoot make it across so we have 18 leaders now with 108km to go. 

The Nieve group, the second group on the road are about 1'15 away from the main break,  so they're closing as we approach the Col de Porte. In that chase group we have Sivakov, Powless, Geschke, Nieve and Sicard.

Onto the climb and Bennett (S) starts to slip back, with the 18 leaders now 7'18 ahead and the pace starting to settle after a truly breathtaking start to the stage today. 

We're 4.5km from the summit for the break but the peloton are still near the base of the climb as Daniel Oss sits at the the front of the break. He's getting his in work early as he knows  he'll struggle on the  later climbs when the pace goes up.

100km to go and the 18 leaders have 7'59 over the main field as Alaphilippe goes back to the team car for a chat and some fresh bottles. He's the main favourite for today but there are some really good climbers in this and the Sivakov group. 

At the back of the peloton Kwiatkowski is on Bernal duty once again as Jumbo Visma once more set the pace. The gap is now up to 8'46, so the winner is going to come from the break at this rate. 

1.3km to go until the summit and Rolland takes off as he wants the KOM points. Roche is going after him though but this is a long way to hit out from. 

Roche has made it up to Rolland's wheel but Rolland takes 5 points and he's closing on the KOM jersey. They'll sit up as we see Bernal go back for bottles. He's shaking his head as we continue to climb as back down the climb Ewan has been dropped again. This is going to be a really though day for the Australian. 

This Nieve group could link up with the leaders on this long descent as the peloton drift out to 9'16 with 93km to go.

Tony Martin is still tapping away as we see Bennett start to drift towards the back of the peloton. Up ahead and Roche and Rolland have 15 seconds on the Alaphilippe group.

83km to go and the Sivakov/Nieve group are 45 seconds as Roche and Rolland are caught by the rest of the break. We'll have 23 riders in the lead before the next climb. Meanwhile the peloton are at 10'18. 

Alaphilippe has a mechanicacl and it looks like he will take a new bike in the next few kilometers.

Juul Jensen will be called to action soon. He's at the back of the break and hasn't worked because his teammate Nieve has been chasing but that will all change soon enough. The Dane will be on the front for the next climb if his teammate can make the juncture. 

Rolland by the way is now just 5 points off the KOM lead as Alaphilippe finally has his bike change. He's got quite a long chase though and he might get picked up by the Sivakov group, which is still at 43 seconds with 65km to go.

No Alaphilippe will make it back on his own as we see him coming through the team cars.

The views are stunning today. 

97km to go

Attack Pierre Rolland! 

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Rolland takes the KOM and a further five points. He is now equal on 36 points with long-time KOM leader Benoît Cosnefroy (AG2R).

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The peloton also summits the Col de Revel. They are 11:50 back on Rolland but do not seem concerned.  


Caleb Ewan, here after getting dropped.

Ewan is nw back in the main field after losing time on the first couple of climb as he digs deep for the final couple of sprint friendly stages to come.

Oss is still here and tapping away at the front of the main break, he's done a huge job but he could be slipping back here as there are a number of tired riders in this move. A few gaps are creeping in.

We're still some way off the Montée de Saint-Nizier-du-Moucherotte, which is the final climb of the day as Oss once more comes back to the front to set the pace.

Pressure on the three Ineos rider in the break as they need to rescue the team's Tour. All three of Andrey Amador, Richard Carapaz, Pavel Sivakov and have the capacity to win today. 

Nieve is another to watch. All of his Grand Tour stage wins have come in the second half of races, although he's never won a stage in the Tour. He's looking good though and is just riding in the wheel as we see Pinot at the back of the main field with Yates.

Mads Pedersen is near the front and has Richie Porte on his wheel. Will the GC riderst attack today or will they wait for stage 17, which is arguably a lot harder.

The gap to the break though is going out and it's now at 12'26 to the leaders as the peloton take it easy after a super quick start. 42km to go.

We are closing on the Montée de Saint-Nizier-du-Moucherotte. It's 11.1km in length with an average gradient of 6.5 per cent. Jumbo are just setting a steady pace for now but that could change later on once the main field reaches the climb.

A reminder of our leaders: 

In the Giro Rosa, it was Vos who won today's stage. You can find our report and results, right here.

34km to go and Pacher has taken off. He's quickly built up 30 second  as Sunweb lead the chase through Pedersen. The race is back on!

The  break line out and a number of riders are fueling before the last major climb starts. The bunch are at 13'10 as Bernal simply chats at the back of the bunch and Pacher holds his 30 second gap with 32km to go.

We're onto the final major climb, or at least the break is, as Carapaz takes over and all of a sudden the pace is lifted. 

Riders are about to be dropped and  few swing over as Anacona takes over at the front. 

The peloton are just racing through Le Drac but they continue to lose time, with the gap at 13'11. Pacher is riding well though and holding his own as he tries to set up Rolland for later on.

Sunweb again come to the front and they're looking to set up either Benoot or Roche on this climb as Pedersen just keeps the pace going. Back in the bunch and Bernal is stretching his back.

The bunch are climbing and Bernal is going backwards with Bennett. Did not think that we'd be saying that a few days ago as up ahead Amador goes on the attack. 

Pacher is holding his own right now as Sicard and Trentin are both dropped. 

Bernal is with the sprinters group. Lets hope he can continue  and just try something in the  final few days. Up ahead his domestiques are fighting for the stage as we see Bernal pick up  a feed. He's on domestique duties today and doing a good job.

Amador's pace setting has reduced this lead group to around 12 riders as Powless and a few others are dropped as Bernal shares  a joke with Knaven about the pace in the gruppetto. 

Barguil is  hanging on as Carapaz attacks with 26km to go and 6.2km to the summit. Roche is there but Nieve has been dropped, which is a surprise. Pacher still has 30 seconds though.

Roche has been dropped and it's just four riders left at the front. Alaphilippe, Carapaz, Kämna and Reichenbach. 25km to go.

Pacher  is pushing on the pedals but we're about to have five riders. But Rolland is MIA at the moment, having been dropped after Carapaz attacked.

Okay, it's kicking off in the bunch and Martin has attacked from the bunch for Cofidis. Lets see if this sticks but it's a good move as he goes away with a teammate.

And now we have those five riders with 25km at the front as Pacher just sits in. We're 4,5km from the summit as Carapaz lifts the pace once more.

Edet is still leading Martin on the climb but no time gap yet for the Cofidis pair as Gesink sets the pace for the yellow jersey group.

Stuyven is still here, and on the front, so the pace isn't blistering. No offense, although he's doing a good job for Porte. The Cofidis pair only have a few seconds, 15 right now.

20 seconds for Martin right now as Pacher is dropped with 23km to go. So we're down to just Reichenbach, Alaphilippe, Carapaz and Kamna. Sunweb are driving the chase behind them at about 31 seconds. 

Touch of wheels for Roglic and Kuss and the American almost crashes but just about saves it. Gesink still setting the pace and doing all the work for the yellow jersey. 

22km to go and 2.2km from the summit on this climb. The winner is likely to come from our  leading four but now it's five because Pacher is back to make it a five man group but then Carapaz attacks with 22.3km to go. Alaphilippe gives chase.

Alaphilippe has blown up. Was it a mechanical or is it just his legs. He's looking down, nope, bad legs as Carapaz goes once more and only Kamna can go with him this time. Ineos are bossing this climb. 

Kamna is just holding on and he wont take a turn with 500m to go until the summit as Martin is caught by the bunch. At least he tried.

Nw Kamna attacks and it's Carapaz' time too chase. It's a struggle though... can he do it?

He's attacked over the summit and the Bora rider has a gap here. 20km to go. Alaphilippe is hoping to chase on the descent and he's still in this.

Kamna has five seconds on Carapaz as he moves into TT mode. Still 19km to go and Carapaz will be hoping for some help with the chase if Reichenbach and Alaphilippe can come back.

Kamna was close to a stage earlier in the race but this is a hug chance to take the win. He's clear and has just 15km to go. Carapaz is at 24 seconds, so the Ineos rider is losing ground and losing ground quickly. 

30 seconds now for the Bora rider and he's well on course for a stage win in the Tour de France but we do still have that 2.2km climb to the finish. 

Back in the GC group,  nothing but there  might still be some attacks close to the finish. 

11km to go for Kamna and he's still extending his lead on this flat section before the final climb to the  line.

Now less than 10km go and Kamna  has 30 seconds on Caparaz, and all these riders are on their own, so it's advantage Kamna as he time trials to the finish. No dice for Alaphilippe, he's caught by Sunweb and they're 1'50 down. 

Now it's 57 seconds for Kamna, unless he cracks then this stage win is going to Bora. 5.2km to go.

1'04 and Kamna is unstoppable. His move was absolutely textbook. He followed all the moves, including all the accelerations from Carapaz and then hit him just over the summit. He even refused to take a turn when the Ineos rider called him through. Carapaz just couldn't react when the Bora rider stamped on the pedals.

It's now 1'12 with 3km to go. 

And now Kamna is on the final climb and he's out of the saddle right away. He's got a minute on the Giro winner as the road rises to around 9 per cent. 

1'15 for Kamna, so there's no way back for Carapaz who will be hanging onto second as Reichenbach chases him down. Just 1.5km to go. 

Lennard Kämna heading to the biggest win of his career now as he heads into the final 800m of the race. He was close when Martinez won a few days ago but he's about to take the win this time.

Lennard Kämna wins stage 16 of the 2020 Tour de France.

Here comes Carapaz, it's second for the Ineos rider. 

And it's Reichenbach who takes third on the stage. Good ride from the Swiss road champion.

Sivakov comes over the line and takes fourth. Another good result considering his falls on stage 1.

Here's the top-10

1 Lennard Kämna (Ger) Bora-Hansgrohe 04:12:52
2 Richard Carapaz (Ecu) Ineos Grenadiers 00:01:27
3 Sébastien Reichenbach (Swi) Groupama-FDJ 00:01:56
4 Pavel Sivakov (Rus) Ineos Grenadiers 00:02:34
5 Simon Geschke (Ger) CCC Team 00:02:35
6 Warren Barguil (Fra) Team Arkea-Samsic 00:02:37
7 Tiesj Benoot (Bel) Team Sunweb 00:02:41
8 Nicolas Roche (Irl) Team Sunweb 00:02:47
9 Quentin Pacher (Fra) B&B Hotels-Vital Concept 00:02:51
10 Julian Alaphilippe (Fra) Deceuninck-Quickstep 00:02:54

Back down the road and the GC riders are approaching the final climbing. Surely there will be some attacks. 

EF are bringing up Uran, Porte is there for Trek too. Pogacar is on Roglic's wheel.

Adam Yates is right at the back of this group. He needs to move up, and fast. 

Movistar have brought Mas up towards the front, Quintana is there too as Yates makes his way up, finally. The Roglic group haven't started climbing just yet.

And now the GC riders are on the climb with Jumbo setting the pace.

Pogacar is going to attack, Roglic is on his wheel.

De La Cruz is leading with Pogacar on his wheel, then Roglic.

Porte is following too with the other GC riders. Quintana has been dropped. 

Roglic has his team around him as Van Aert takes over.

1.1km to go and they're trying to nullify Pogacar.

Mas is hanging on at the back, Martin is there.

It's still Van Aert on the front with 600m to go.

Pogacar goes with 400m to go and Roglic goes with him.

No gaps but Lopez goes and Pogacar looks to respond.

In the end, no real gaps. Martinez maybe took a second, maybe, as we see Quintana lose more time. 

Lets hear from our winner, Kamna:

:I feel great. It was an absolutely awesome day for me. It was a fight from the beginning on and I knew I had to make it to the finish alone. When I saw that Carapaz was dropping the speed, I thought now it's the time to go and went all in to the end. It's a big relief also for the team and for me. I can almost not imagine it. The step I made this year is huge and I'm so blessed to win today."

General Classification
1 Primoz Roglic (Slo) Team Jumbo-Visma 70:06:47
2 Tadej Pogacar (Slo) UAE Team Emirates 0:00:40
3 Rigoberto Uran (Col) EF Pro Cycling 0:01:34
4 Miguel Angel Lopez Moreno (Col) Astana Pro Team 0:01:45
5 Adam Yates (GBr) Mitchelton-Scott 0:02:03
6 Richie Porte (Aus) Trek-Segafredo 0:02:13
7 Mikel Landa Meana (Spa) Bahrain McLaren 0:02:16
8 Enric Mas Nicolau (Spa) Movistar Team 0:03:15
9 Tom Dumoulin (Ned) Team Jumbo-Visma 0:05:19
10 Nairo Quintana (Col) Team Arkea-Samsic 0:05:43

Stage winner Team Bora rider Germanys Lennard Kamna celebrates as he crosses the finish line of the 16th stage of the 107th edition of the Tour de France cycling race 164 km between La Tour du Pin and VillarddeLans on September 15 2020 Photo by Stuart Franklin POOL AFP Photo by STUART FRANKLINPOOLAFP via Getty Images

(Image credit: Getty Images)