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Dumoulin and Bardet lose time at Tour de France after bikes break

14 July, 2018, 00:42 | Author: Heidi Alvarez
  • Toms Skujins

Dan Martin celebrates as he crosses the line to take yesterday's sixth stage of the Tour De France.

New Zealander Dion Smith led a five-man breakaway at the start of the hilly 181 kilometre stage, which started in Brest.

They remained out in front with 15 kilometes to go, as the peloton began their first ascent of the finishing climb.

Froome has not been alone in losing time with nearly every general classification contender suffering some kind of incident so far, whether a crash, a mechanical, or time losses in Monday's team time trial.

It would ultimately see both riders lose time on the stage, with Martin's attack from over one kilometre from the finish causing a fast run in to the line.

The Irishman was denied by an AG2R La Mondiale rider in 2015 when Alexis Vuillermoz beat him to the finish, but on this occasion he would deny a member of the same team.

Alejandro Valverde finished third for Movistar ahead of Quick-Step Floors' Julian Alaphilippe, who missed out on bonus seconds.

Martin finished runner-up at Mur de Bretagne in a Tour stage three years ago.

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"I was following quite good wheels but it was choppy".

"So I set off, kept my head down, kept going and my legs felt good". "Today the legs were good and everything was OK", said Groenewegen, who rides for Team Lotto NL-Jumbo.

The likes of Vincenzo Nibali, Richie Porte, Geraint Thomas, Nairo Quintana, Mikel Landa and even Peter Sagan were part of the group - although defending champion Chris Froome (Team Sky) found himself on the other side of a slight split to concede five seconds to many of his GC rivals, while Colombian Rigoberto Uran (EF Education First-Drapac) was a further three seconds in arrears.

Thomas came to the race as Sky's "Plan G", given a free hand to race at least until the Alps, at which point the team may need to implement a more focused strategy depending on the standings.

Dumoulin, the time trial world champion and 2017 Giro d'Italia victor, started the stage 44 seconds ahead of Froome, but finished just behind him.

During his chase back to the peloton, Dumoulin took a long draft behind his team auto but race commissaires deemed it too long - and deducted a further 20 seconds from his time.

He now lies 1:23 off the lead.

Days like these are referred to as "transfer" stages, for moving the Tour from one area to the next - from Brittany to north-central France in this case, as the race winds toward Sunday's highly awaited cobblestoned leg to Roubaix near the Belgian border.

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