CYCLING: Dan Martin and Alberto Contador were trapped by a split of the Peloton in the Winds …
The wind blew through the 16th stage of the Tour de France 2017. Strong, very strong. And Michael Matthews crossed first the finish line in Romans-sur-Isère after a very stressful day, while the peloton also have to tackle the terrible mountains of the Croix de Fer and le Galibier on Wednesday.
We expected a quiet start to the race and a mad dash towards the end of the stage with the sprinters, but we were treated to a double ration of excitement, led by the Sunweb team who are taking on the fight for the green jersey for Michael Matthews from Marcel Kittel. This caused his team, the Sunweb from the beginning of the stage to put on an amazing pace that saw Marcel Kittel blow out of the back of the peleton.
The gamble paid of for the Sunweb team and the Australian, who won the intermediate sprint at 50 kilometers from the finish. Insufficient to steal the green jersey, but enough to make it closer and within reach, especially as the Australian also won the final sprint.
The second big push of the day was initiated by the Sky team at 15 kilometers to go. An announced and superbly performed break in the crosswinds, leaving behind Dan Martin (50 seconds lost) and Alberto Contador (over a minute). Chris Froome is still in the yellow jersey before Fabio Aru and Romain Bardet. For these men, it is tomorrow that they risk of moving up towards Froome.