Froome Climbs to Victory in Stage 15 of Tour de France
Chris Froome (Sky) has won on Mont Ventoux. The Sky man surged away from Nairo Quintana (Movistar) with 1.2 km left to win Stage 15, a 242-km ride from Givors to Mont Ventoux, in 5:48:45. Quintana finished second at 0:29, and Mikel Nieve (Euskaltel-Euskadi) finished third at 1:29. Froome has extended his overall lead in the Tour de France.
Nieve by 0:30.
Froome attacked Quintana several times. With 1.2 km remaining, the Briton got clear of the Colombian. Behind, Rodriguez attacked his group in an attempt to gain some time on his companions. He finished in the same time as Nieve.
Sir Dave Brailsford, Sky’s general manager, said that the stage went according to plan. "From this morning, obviously, we were concerned about the break, who was going to be in there and how that performed," he said. "That was the first part of the race. Europcar decided to chase, which made it more interesting and then Movistar decided to ride in order to try and win the stage. But our plan was always the same in that we wanted to get Froomey, Richie, and Pete into the ideal situation at the foot of the climb as fresh as possible. That was the job of everyone else, and they did that perfectly.
"Chris was trying to put as much time as possible into his adversaries. He was thinking about the GC and time gap with the rest day tomorrow. Today was always earmarked for us as a day where we could gain time. When you’ve got the form that he’s got at the minute and he’s going well – when you’ve got your self-belief systems in place, that’s what sport is all about.”
In the overall, Froome leads Bauke Mollema (Belkin) by 4:14 and Contador by 4:25. Tomorrow will be the Tour’s second rest day. Stage 16 will be a hilly, 168-km ride from Vaison-La Romaine to Gap. It will feature three Category 2 climbs, the last of which will peak 12 km from the finish. A breakaway on the last climb will probably take the stage, and GC contenders must be alert to avoid having time taken from them. Who will win? Check in at www.roadcycling.com and find out!