Stage 12 of the Tour de France saw the peloton take on three monster climbs, including a summit finish on the legendary Alpe d’Huez. It ended with five big GC riders finishing within seconds of each other. Geraint Thomas of Sky took the win but, on today’s evidence, the race is far from over.
It was the second shortest stage of this year’s Tour de France at 108.5km, going over two HC climbs, a Cat 2 and finishing on the summit of a Cat 1. Sky controlled the peloton (seemingly even when they weren’t riding on the front) and, except for a few valiant efforts from Alejandro Valverde and Tom Dumoulin, the script seemed to have been written long before nearly an entire complement of Sky riders hit the base of the final climb. With the lesser of the GC riders getting shelled out the back and no domestiques left, Geraint Thomas attacked first with 6km to go, bridging first to Dumoulin then passing Mikel Nieve without a look back to take a solo stage win. Meanwhile Chris Froome went with Dan Martin, riding after his teammate – finishing third on the stage, after Dumoulin pipped him at the post. The day ended with Thomas in yellow, Froome in second (1.25 down) and Dumoulin in third (1.44) on GC.
His results are impressive, his standing with a large contingent of cycling fans less so. Euan asks … how the hell isn’t Chris Froome considered one of the greats?