Tour De France Stage 10 Macon -  Bellegarde-Sur-Valserine

12/07/2012   |   Posted by jeremy

Stage 10 Macon – Bellegarde-sur-Valserine  194.5km.

Stage 10 of yesterday’s Tour de France had all the makings of a classic Tour stage. Firstly there was the course itself , The first 75km were relatively flat, before reaching the three categorised climbs of the day that included an HC or out of category climb. That was sandwiched in between a category two before hand and a category three after. The HC climb was up the the Grand Colombier, the first time the Tour had gone up here.

Secondly there were the riders. With the climbs comes the descents and with Bradley Wiggins having built up a nice time gap overall, it would be the perfect opportunity for some of the other top riders, namely Cadel Evans and Vincenzo Nibali to work together to put the squeeze on Brad. Both Cadel and Vincenzo are great descenders, especially the latter who seems to have that brain switch off mode when it comes to descending. Nibali has already said that he’s not worried about Wiggins and doesn’t impress him much either.

As the riders hit the Grand Colombier the peloton was split when four riders went off the front, opening up a lead of around 5 minutes. This group included one of my favourite riders, the Frenchman Thomas Voeckler. They went over the summit of the Colombier and raced down the other side without any incidents and on towards the last climb of the day.

 The next group over included Wiggo, Evans and Nibali. As expected Nibali went off the front of the group and opened up what looked like a very nice gap with his usual impressive descending skills. He came across one of his team mates, Peter Sagan on the descent who went all out to get him ahead even further. But he couldn’t make it stick because as he was on the last climb of the day, the peloton was closing back up with Ritchie Porte and Chris Froome of Sky driving the group up to his back wheel.

Meanwhile Tommy Voeckler and his group that included , Luis Leon Sanchez of Rabobank were looking comfortable with their lead.  I could tell this instantly because Voecklers’ tongue wasn’t hanging out like it usually does when he starts to get tired. With 18km to go he was already starting to look around at the other three, to see who was capable of beating him to the line.

The riders were on the last descent of the day and boy were they shifting. This descent has already been used this year in the Criterium du Dauphine, so they would remember the road quite easily. All of a sudden the big German Jens Voigt of Radioshck-Nissan had managed unseen by the cameras to cross the gap from the main group to catch the lead four.

 He in race terms is not a young man at 40 but is known for being a bit of a breakaway specialist. He passed the front group but Voeckler went after him and caught him. With a last push he powered his way ahead to cross the finish line in first place, followed by Michele Scarponi of Lampre while Jens Voigt came in an impressive third. Tommy Voeckler as well as taking the stage win also takes the Polka dot jersey as king of the mountains, oh and he also took the prize for the most aggressive rider of the day. Not a bad day’s work all in all and well deserved.

Today see’s the race hit The Alps so watch out for some more serious climbing in what looks like another great stage.

 

 

Rank

Name

Team

Time

1

Bradley Wiggins

Team Sky

43hrs 59mins 02secs

2

Cadel Evans

BMC Racing

+1min 53secs

3

Chris Froome

Team Sky

+2mins 07secs

4

Vincenzo Nibali

Liquigas-Cannondale

+2mins 23secs

5

Denis Menchov

Katusha

+3mins 02secs

6

Haimar Zubeldia

RadioShack-Nissan

+3mins 19secs

7

Maxime Monfort

RadioShack-Nissan

+4mins 23secs

8

Jurgen Van Den Broeck

Lotto-Belisol

+4mins 48secs

9

Nicolas Roche

AG2R La Mondiale

+5mins 29secs

10

Tejay Van Garderen

BMC Racing

+5mins 31secs

 

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