Thursday July 12th, 2012

Stage 11Albertville / La Toussuire - Les Sybelles

Start 13h20 GMT 2+

Key moments

video12.07.2012 in 23:00Summary of the race

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Summary of the race

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Stage summary12.07.2012 in 18:25Rolland wins while Wiggins increases his lead

© A.S.O.

If there was any lingering doubt about the strength of the Sky team, then wonder no more: the British outfit is the dominant force in the 99th Tour de France. The stage to La Tourssuire might have been won by a Frenchman - with Pierre Rolland pulling off another tremendous climbing coup to go alongside his triumph at Alpe d'Huez from the 2011 Tour - but Great Britain is in complete command of the general classification. Wiggins increased his advantage over last year's champion, Cadel Evans,...

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video12.07.2012 in 16:00Interview - Stage Winner

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Interview - Stage Winner

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Sporting stakes13.07.2012 in 11:00Bidding farewell to the Alps

Bradley Wiggins said after stage 11 that he felt an overwhelming sense of relief that he could put the day that he believed would be the most difficult of the 2012 Tour behind him. There will be some heavy legs after an epic battle that significantly altered the overall standings and the moral of some will have taken a heavy hit after the race to La Toussuire... particularly the defending champion Cadel Evans. The Australian tried in vain to make up some of his deficit on Wiggins with an...

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interview12.07.2012 in 19:38RadioShack consolidates

Deprived of a start for Andy Schleck – the one rider who was to be its leader for the individual general classification – RadioShack-Nissan has a wealth of talent but no longer a potential title winner in the individual rankings. Still, the quality of the collective is obvious and the squad's domination of the team classification continued at La Toussuire. Remember, this is based on the times of the three best each day and, in stage 11, they were Fränk Schleck (10th), Chris Horner...

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interview12.07.2012 in 19:21Pierre Rolland: The Alps, it is my home

For the second year in a row Pierre Rolland has won a stage of the Tour in the Alps. This one, however, has a different flavour to the victory at Alpe d'Huez in 2011...

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interview12.07.2012 in 19:08Kessiakoff: Hopefully I can defend the polka-dot jersey

After one day out of the climber's jersey, Frederik Kessiakoff is back in the polka-dot top following stage 11 and he's happy enough with that...

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interview12.07.2012 in 18:59Wiggins: I was surprised Cadel attacked...

Before the 2012 Tour began, Bradley Wiggins had said that he thought stage 11 would be the hardest. At the finish, his team's position on GC was improved but he acknowledged that it indeed lived up to his expectations.

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video12.07.2012 in 11:45Analysis of the stage

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Analysis of the stage

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video12.07.2012 in 10:30The day's route

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The day's route

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Newsflashes

18:15Top 5 overall after stage 11

The new rankings in the overall classification looks like this:

1. Bradley Wiggins (GBR) SKY

2. Chris Froome (GBR) SKY at 2'05"

3. Vincenzo Nibali (ITA) LIQ at 2'23"

4. Cadel Evans (AUS) BMC at 3'19"

5. Jurgen van den Broeck (BEL) LTB 4'48"

18:08The top 10 in stage 11

The second mountain top finished has shaken up the overall rankings. Here is the top 10 of the 11th stage...

1. Pierre Rolland (FRA) EUC

2. Thibaut Pinot (FRA) FDJ at 55"

3. Chris Froome (GBR) SKY at 55"

4. Jurgen van den Broeck (BEL) LTB at 57"

5. Vincenzo Nibali (ITA) LIQ at 57"

6. Bradley Wiggins (GBR) SKY at 57"

7. Chris Sorensen (DEN) STB at 1'09"

8. Janez Brajkovic (SLO) AST at 1'59"

9. Vasili Kiryienka (BLR) MOV at...

18:05Sky to take first and second overall...?

Given the deficit of Evans in stage 11, it's likely that Sky will now hold down first and second place in the general classification...

18:04Evans arrives at the finish...

Evans was led to the finish by his loyal team-mate van Garderen about 1'30" behind Wiggins and Froome.

18:03French: 1st and 2nd!

Pinot is the second at the finish, 55" behind his compatriot, and just ahead of Froome.

18:02Rolland's second Tour stage win!

For the second day in a row, the Europcar team has won a stage of the Tour. Rolland zipped up his jersey, and saluted his fictory with a significant lead on the next best rides... who are yet to finish the stage.

18:00Rolland onward to another epic stage win

Rolland is inside the final kilometre of the stage. This is likely to be the day of his second Tour stage win - following the coup at Alpe d'Huez last year. He has a lead of over 1'00" to the next best rider.

17:59Kiryienka caught...

Froome, Wiggins, van den Broeck, Nibali and Pinot have caught the Movistar rider inside the final 3km.

Sorensen is in second place in the stage, 1'00" behind Rolland.

The yellow jersey group is at 1'15" with 2km to go in the stage.

17:57Wiggins' group at 1'45"

Wiggins is 1'45" behind the stage leader (Rolland) while Evans is at 2'20"...

17:55Evans loses 38" to Wiggins...

Wiggins might have had a moment of crisis but his group is now 38" ahead of Evans.

17:54Pinot goes ahead: Wiggins returns...

Pinot has attacked the yellow jersey group after Wiggins' mini-crisis. The race leader is now riding along with VDB, Nibali and Froome.

17:53Wiggins cracks...

Froome attacked momentarily but it was an effort that has cost Wiggins his place in the elite group...

17:51Schleck dropped

Wiggins and Froome are on their own and about to catch the Nibali group. They have dropped Schleck with about 5.5km to go.

17:48Evans in trouble...

Evans is unable to maintain the pace being set by Froome. Van Garderen is waiting for his team leader but Wiggins, Froome and Schleck are putting time into the Australian.

17:47Nibali gains 25" so far...

The quartet that includes Nibali is now 1'50" behind Rolland (who appears to be racing ahead to a second Tour stage win as he's inside the final 6km).

The yellow jersey's quintet is at 2'15".

17:45Froome back at the front

After the surge by Wiggins, Froome is back at the front of the yellow jersey group which is now in pursuit of four: Nibali, Brajkovic, Pinot and van den Broeck.

There is 20" between the Wiggins group and the Nibali group.

17:43Wiggins now chasing Nibali

With about 9km to go, Wiggins has decided it's time to dance after Nibali who has just caught Pinot and Brajkovic. Froome is limiting his losses and holding on the back of the group led by the yellow jersey.

17:41Nibali again...

WIth 10km to go, Nibali has launched another attack. Again it's up to Froome to set the pace... there are five in the group behind Nibali: Wiggins, Froome, Evans, van Garderen and Schleck...

17:39Nibali waiting...

Nibali knows he cannot maintain the pace with his attack. He is now caught by Froome, Wiggins, Evans and Schleck.

17:3810km to go

Rolland is on his own insde the final 10km of the stage.

Froome now has his head down as he tries to limit the gains of Nibali who is within sight but he's not giving in. The Italian is out of the saddle and trying to keep his attack alive.

17:37Nibali attacks!

Nibali has launched an impressive attack and that has taken Porte out of the yellow jersey's group. Wiggins is now left only with Froome for support. The Sky riders are pacing themselves and not reaction to what was a violent and efficient surge from the Liquigas leader.

17:36Rolland's advantage: 10"

Kiserlovski and Rolland are 10" ahead of Sorensen and Kiryienka.

Brajakovic, Pinot and van den Broeck are together 1'55" behind the stage leaders.

17:3412km to go: Brajkovic attacks

Janez Brajkovic has attacked the yellow jersey group and there's been no reaction to his move that came with about 14km to climb.

Pinot has now also seized the chance to try his legs.

Van den Broeck also wants in on the action... but Sky couldn't care less. The trio from Wiggins team and just tapping away and making sure they mark the true rivals for GC.

17:34Rolland goes alone!

Rolland has attacked the lead group with 11km to go. He is caught by Kiserlovski and they have a lead of about 100m on Kiryienka and Sorensen.

17:31Four RadioShack riders in yellow jersey group

The 16 in the yellow jersey groups includes four from one team. They are 2'45" behind the four stage leaders.

The elite group is: Wiggins, Porte, Froome, Evans, van Garderen, Schleck, Horner, Zubeldia, Kloden, Nibali, Roche, Coppel, Pinot, van den Broeck, Cobo and Brajkovic.

17:27Composition of yellow jersey group

The riders who are in the Wiggins' group also include:

Porte and Froome (SKY).

Evans and Van Garderen (BMC)

Horner, Kloden and Zubeldia (RNT)

Nibali (LIQ)

Roche (ALM)

Coppel (SAU)

Van den Broeck (LTB)

Cobo (MOV)

Brajkovic (AST)

17:25No former stage winners from Croatia...

The stage is led by a Frenchman, Croatian, Belarussian, and a Dane. To date there has never been a Tour de France stage winner from Croatia... could Kiserlovski be the first? We'll find out in less than 15km. His group of four is currently 3'12" ahead of the peloton.

17:22Roche dropped...

Roche (ALM) is one of the men in the top 10 overall who has recently been dropped by the peloton that's now led by Porte, Froome and Wiggins (SKY).

17:20Martin and Kessiakoff caught

The 'Wiggo' group has caught Martin (GRS) and Kessiakoff (AST) early on the final climb. There are now just six ahead of the yellow jersey's group but Rogers' turn is over and now Porte takes over the pacesetting...

17:19Four in the lead

Kiserlovski, Kiryienka, Sorensen and Rolland are now together at the front of the stage...

17:18Four Sky riders lead peloton

Rogers is ahead of Porte who leads Froome then Wiggins at the front of the bunch that is now on the steep early part of the final climb.

17:17Kessiakoff and Martin: at 2'55"

The riders in seventh and eighth place are 2'55" behind the stage leaders at the base of the climb.

The peloton is at 3'20".

17:16Six men on the final climb

Kiserlovski and Rolland are riding together about 10" ahead of Kiryienka and Sorensen. Ten Dam and Velits are behind by 1'15" at the base of the final climb. 

17:15Two stage leaders

Kiserlovski is attacking the early part of the final climb. He is being followed by Rolland.

17:14Horner and Pinot caught by peloton

Horner and Pinot have just been caught by the yellow jersey's peloton.

Up front are: Kiserlovski, Kiryienka, Rolland, Sorensen... they are 1'25" ahead of Ten Dam and Velits with 20km to go. Then comes Martin and Kessiakoff... and then the peloton which is currently 3'35" behind the stage leaders.

17:12Sharp left turn at it's all uphill...

The leaders have just passed the 20km to go sign. In two kilometres they'll take a sharp left turn and, boom: the road rises sharply again early and sends the riders up towards La Toussuire which is high above the town of St-Jean-de-Maurienne.

The final 18km is uphill.

17:10Wiggo's group inside final 25km

With 25km to go, the yellow jersey's group is 3'30" behind the four stage leaders... Kiserlovski, Kiryienka and Rolland have been caught by Sorensen.

17:09Three in the lead again...

Kiserlovski and Kiryienka have been caught by Rolland with 22.5km to go.

17:08Four Sky riders at front of peloton...

There hasn't been an attack from Nibali on the descents of today's stage. There are currently four men from Sky leading the yellow jersey's group.

17:0725km to go

Kiserlovski and Kiryienka are inside the final 25km. The yellow jersey's group continues to be led by Rogers and is 3'30" behind the Croatian and Belorussian stage leaders.

17:05Rolland at 10"

Rolland is now within 10" of the stage lead. He is eight seconds ahead of Sorensen.

17:04Rolland racing again...

Rolland has been able to remount his bike. He's now racing to try and join the leading pair: Kiserlovski and Kiryienka. Sorensen is still in fourth place...

17:03Sorensen at 18"

There are still three men in the lead - Rolland (EUC), Kiryienka (MOV) and Kiserlovski...

Rolland has just crashed!

17:00Situation at the summit...

At the top of the Mollard climb, this was the situation of the race: Rolland was first (taking 5pts) with his trio in tact. Then came Sorensen (4th) at 10”, Ten Dam at 1'00”, Velits at 1'25”, Martin and Kessiakoff at 2'05”, Horner at 2'38”, Pinot at 3'08” and the peloton at 3'20”.

16:56Rolland leading up Mollard...

The winner of the stage to Alpe d'Huez last year is at the front of the stage, setting the pace for Kiryienka and Kiserlovski. The Frenchman has taken the five points for as the first over the top of the third climb.

1. Pierre (EUC) 5pts

2. Kiserlovksi (AST) 3pts

3. Kiryienka (MOV) 2pts

4. Sorensen (STB) 1pt - at 10"

Ten Dam is at 1'00".

16:56Velits sixth at top

At the 35km to go mark, Velits is 1'25" behind the stage leaders.

16:53Kessiakoff takes Souvenir Henri Desgrange

Radio Tour has corrected the order over the col de la Croix de Fer and the 5,000 euro for the special prize at the top - and the 25 points for first - was actually won by Kessiakoff, not Rolland.

Apologies for any confusion caused.

16:50Three in the lead

Kiryienka (MOV) has caught Kiserlovski (AST) and Rolland (EUC). The next rider on the road is Sorensen (STB).

They are inside the final kilometre of the col du Mollard.

The yellow jersey's group is at 3'00".

16:49Two lead two by 8"

Kiryienka is 8" behind Kiserlovski and Rolland. Sorrensen is at 12".

16:45Two lead two by 15"

Sorensen and Velits are 15" behind Rolland and Kiserlovski.

But just now, with 39km to go, Velits has lost contact with the Danish rider who has been chased down by Kiryienka.

The two stage leaders have an advantage of 2'30" on the yellow jersey's peloton.

16:41Ten Dam, Horner and Kessiakoff dropped

There are now just two men in the lead group: Kiserlovski and Rolland. They are inside the final 40km and have a lead of 10" on Velits and Sorensen.

16:39Velits on the attack...

Velits has attacked the lead group with 41km to go. He is chased down by Sorensen and now Rolland and Kiserlovski have caught the Omega Pharma-Quickstep rider.

16:36Eight in the lead

There are now eight riders at the front of the stage as Velits has returned to the lead group. They are 2'15" ahead of the yellow jersey with 42km to go.

16:34Seven lead yellow jersey group by 2'15"

The seven stage leaders - Horner, Rolland, Martin, Ten Dam, Kiryienka, Kiserlovski and Sorensen - are 20" ahead of Kessiakoff and Velits.

The yellow jersey's group is at 2'10".

16:2950km to go

Ten Dam, Horner and Sorensen are in pursuit of their former escape companions on the descent. The stage is led by Kessiakoff, Kisierlovski and Kiryienka...

16:27Corrected climbing points allocation

1. Rolland (EUC) 25pts

2. Kessiakoff (AST) 20pts

3. Sorensen (OPQ) 17pts - 10"

4. Horner (RNT) 14pts

5. Kisierlovski (AST) 12pts

6. Ten dam (RAB) 10pts

7. Martin (GRS) 8pts

8. Kiryienka (MOV) 6pts

9. Velits (OPQ) 4pts

10. Kern (EUC) 2pts

The peloton was 2'10" behind.

16:26Third: Sorensen - Not Velits

Radio Tour has corrected the results of the second climb: Sorensen was third at the top, not Velits.

Sorry for any confusion caused.

16:24Result of col de la Croix de Fer

1. Rolland (EUC) 25pts

2. Kessiakoff (AST) 20pts

3. Velits (OPQ) 17pts - 10"

4. Horner (RNT) 14pts

5. Kisierlovski (AST) 12pts

6. Ten dam (RAB) 10pts

7. Martin (GRS) 8pts

8. Kiryienka (MOV) 6pts

9. Rogers (SKY) 4pts - at 2'10"

10. Wiggins (SKY) 2pts

16:22Wiggins 2'05" behind

With 1km to climb, the yellow jersey's group is 2'05" behind the Rolland group.

16:21Kisierlovski leading the stage

There are two Astana riders in the lead of the stage. Kisierlovski is currently setting the pace. Sorensen (STB) has just rejoined the lead group.

16:20Wiggins still has three team-mates...

Rogers is still at the front of the yellow jersey's group. Zubeldia is back with the gropu that is now composed of:

Wiggins, Rogers, Porte, Froom, Zubeldia, Evans, van Garderen, Nibali, Brajkovic, van de Broeck, and Pinot.

16:18Rolland takes the lead

Rolland is now at the front of the lead group. His turn didn't last long and now Ten Dam is in control.

The lead group is: Horner, Rolland, Martin, Ten Dam, Kiryienka, Kessiakoff and Kisierlovski.

16:16Seven in the lead

Just before the top of the second climb, there are seven men at the front of the stage. Dan Martin has just come to the lead group.

16:1410 in yellow jersey group

The group with the yellow jersey is 10 strong. The men in this elite selection are:

Wiggins, Froome, Porte, Rogers, Evans, Van Garderen, Van den Broeck, Nibali, Brajkovic and Pinot.

16:11Kerns turn finally finishes

Kern had led for about 19 of the 22km of the second climb. The front of the stage is led by Horner - the second oldest rider in the 2012 Tour.

The stage is led by: Horner, Kisierlovski, Kessiakoff, Rolland, Martin, Ten Dam, Kiryienka.

16:09Composition of the yellow jersey group

The riders in the group with Wiggins are:

Wiggins, Froome, Rogers, Porte, Evans, van Garderen, Basso, Nibali, Pinot, van den Broeck, Brajkovic...

They have just dropped Feillu and Vinokourov.

Wiggins' group has just caught Valverde.

16:07Evans has been caught...

Evans' attack lasted 5km and he's now back with the yellow jersey. They are 2'55" behind the stage leaders.

16:05Seven seconds gain for Evans...

Evans has gained only seven seconds with his move that started at the 81km mark. He's been on the attack for four kilometres and reached a maximum gain on Wiggins of 20".

16:04The yellow jersey's group

The riders with yellow jersey group are:

Wiggins, Rogers, Porte, Froome, Nibali, Pinot, van den Broeck, Brajkovic...

16:04Evans within sight of Wiggins

Wiggins group of eight can now see Evans and van Garderen who are now riding with Basso and Feillu.

16:01Schleck and Zubeldia dropped

Schleck and Zubeldia have been dropped by the yellow jersey jersey's group.

Evans has had to call van Garderen back as the white jersey had opened a gap on his team leader.

16:00Moinard gone

Moinard is no longer with the Evans attack. Van Garderen is still ahead of his Australian team-mate and this pair has just caught Vinokourov.

15:59Three BMC riding together

Moinard has been caught by van Garderen and Evans. The Frenchman was in the early attack and he's now pacing the best young rider and the man in second overall... but the Sky team seems able to limit its losses to this attack.

Evans is at 3'10" from the stage leaders.

Wiggins' group is at 3'30".

15:58Evans at 3'30" from stage lead

Evans and van Garderen can only gain about 15" on the Sky team. The latest time check has the Evans 3'30" from the stage leaders and the Roger-led troop at 3'45".

15:56Still four Sky riders in pursuit

Evans is still following the wheel of van Garderen. The last time check had them 15" ahead of the four Sky riders: Rogers, Porte, Wiggins and Froome.

15:55Wiggins giving orders to Rogers

Wiggins can be seen issuing instructions to Rogers who is ahead of Porte and the yellow jersey. They are 15" behind Evans and van Garderen.

15:5412km to climb

Evans has left Leipheimer behind and the Australian defending champion is 10" ahead of the yellow jersey. Evans is now riding on the wheel of van Garderen.

15:53Rogers leads chase

Rogers is leading the yellow jersey's chase of Evans but the Australian's surge is an impressive one. He has just caught Leipheimer and they have an advantage of about 100m on Wiggins.

15:52Evans attack peloton

Evans (BMC) has attacked the peloton at the 81km mark.

15:51Two other BMC riders with Evans

Quinziato (BMC) looks like he's about to lose contact with the yellow jersey peloton but Evans still has two BMC riders with him. They are just behind the five guys from Sky who are still tapping out the tempo but ignoring the acceleration by van Garderen.

The white jersey is 4'00" behind the stage leaders.

The peloton is at 4'25".

15:49Van Garderen attacks peloton

Just as Riblon (ALM) was caught by the peloton, van Garderen (BMC) has gone on the attack. There was NO reaction at all from the Sky team to the acceleration by the rider in the white jersey.

15:48Kern constantly...

Since the start of the col de la Croix de Fer, there's been one man at the front of the escape group: Christophe Kern! His pace has caused Sorensen and Kadri to lose contact in the last couple of minutes.

15:45The 11 leaders of stage 11

Horner, Kern, Rolland, Martin, Kadri, Trofimov, Ten Dam, Kiryienka, Sorensen, Kessiakoff, Kisierlovski and Velits are the men in the lead of the 11th stage.

They are 4'10" ahead of the yellow jersey's peloton that continues to be led by Knees (SKY).

15:43Sorensen & Trofimov catch up again

Trofimov and Sorensen have fought their way back to the lead group which was named in the previous newsflash.

15:42Kern leads Velits in escape

At the front of the stage is a group of eight or nine riders. At the front is Kern, ahead of Velits, Martin, Rolland, Horner, Kiryienka, Ten Dam, Kessiakoff, Kisierlovski and Kadri.

15:40Valverde and Basso out of lead group

Valverde and Basso are no longer able to match the pace that's being set by Kern (EUC) in the front of the stage.

Trofimov, Sorensen and Weening have also been spat out the back.

15:37Leipheimer out of lead group

Leipheimer (OPQ) is unable to match the pace of his escape companions. He is the latest to be dropped from the lead group that now includes 16 men.

15:36Details of Col de la Croix de Fer

The climb of the iron cross is 22.4km long and has an average gradient of 6.9%. The top is at an altitude of 2,067m. It is rated 'hors categorie'.

As this is the highest point of the Alps in the 2012 Tour, there is a 5,000 euro bonus for the first over the line as it's the special prize known as the 'Souvenir Henri Desgrange' - named after the founder of the Tour.

15:32Rogers setting the pace now

Sky still has four men at the front of the bunch. Rogers is ahead of Wiggins, who is ahead of Porte and Froome is in fourth place... but Knees is not there only because he's dropped behind the peloton to collect drinks. The German Sky recruit is now riding back to the front to deliver some bidons to his mates...

15:31Renshaw out of the Tour de France

Mark Renshaw (RAB) is the latest to quit the 99th Tour de France. That means there are now 10 Australians left in the race (as Matt Lloyd was a non-starter yesterday).

15:30Moinard also drops out of lead group

Moinard (BMC) has also dropped off the back of the lead group. This is fairly typical tactics from teams managed by John Lelangue. We're likely to see Moinard at the front of the peloton soon... it's common practice for GC teams to put riders in the early move only to make them wait for the team leader. Burghardt did the same for BMC yesterday...

15:28Scarponi, Marzano and Vinokourov dropped

The rider in the lead group who was the best on GC, Scarponi has been dropped along with Vinokourov and Marzano.

15:2522 in the lead group

Early on the climb of the croix de Fer, the Basso group has caught up with the stage leaders. There are now 22 men in this group. The riders at the front are:

Moinard, Horner, Kern, Rolland, Scarponi, Marzano, Basso, Martin, Kadri, Trofimov, Ten Dam, Valverde, Kiryienka, Sorensen, Kessiakoff, Kisierlovski, Vinokourov, Leipheimer, Veltis and Weening.

15:23Gilbert and Boasson Hagen dropped

Gilbert (BMC) and Boasson Hagen (SKY) have just lost contact with the yellow jersey's peloton.

15:22Knees takes over pacesetting duties

Boasson Hagen has led the peloton for the first 80km of the stage. He is no longer at the front of the bunch that is 2'30" behind the stage leaders. Instead it's Christian Knees of the Sky team who is followed by Rogers and Wiggins...

15:20Yellow jersey at 2'30"

The Leipheimer/Vino/Basso group is 25" from the stage leaders. The yellow jersey's peloton is 2'35" behind Scarponi's group.

15:20Bouet, Izaguirre and Koren caught by peloton

Three of the escapees have just been caught by the yellow jersey's peloton.

15:18Result of intermediate sprint

The points for the intermediate sprint were won by:

1. Kessiakoff (AST) 20pts

2. Velits (OPQ) 17pts

3. Kern (EUC) 15pts

4. Scarponi (LAM) 13pts

5. Valverde (MOV) 11pts

6. Kiserlovski (AST) 10pts

7. Rolland (EUC) 9pts

8. Trofimov (KAT) 8pts

9. Basso (LIQ) 7pts

10. Kadri (ALM) 6pts

11. Horner (RNT) 5pts

12. Sorensen (STB) 4pts

13. Martin (GRS) 3pts

14. Riblon (ALM) 2pts

15. Feillu (SAU)...

15:16Basso leads second group over sprint line

The leaders are at the foot of the col de la Croix de Fer and have a lead of 35" on the selection that includes Basso, Leipheimer and Vinokourov.

15:15The lead group...

The riders in the lead of the stage are: Rolland (EUC), Kessiakoff (AST), Velits (OPQ), Trofimov (KAT), Kiryienka (MOV), Valverde (MOV), and Scarponi (LAM).

15:13Nibali returns...

Nibali is back in the peloton after his mechanical issues... this bunch continues to be led by Boasson Hagen (SKY).

15:12Leaders near intermediate sprint

The two Movistar riders in the escape are leading the front group towards the site of the intermediate sprint (at 70km). They are 30" ahead of Vinokourov and Leipheimer.

The peloton is at 2'55".

15:11Nibali isolated after mecahnical incident

The leader of the Liquigas team is being paced to the peloton by the team car but he's not got any team-mates with him since he was forced to stop to tend to an mechanical incident.

15:09Nibali has mechanical incident...

Nibali (LIQ) has been forced to stop and get a new bike.

At the same time, Sagan and Oss (LIQ) have sat up and have been caught by the peloton.

15:08Vinokourov and Leipheimer 28" behind leaders

Vinokourov and Leipheimer are riding together. This pair is 28" behind the group that includes Scarponi.

15:0685km to go...

Kessiakoff and Velits have been caught by the group that includes Valverde et al.

15:05Valverde's group at 12"

Valverde's group of 25 is just 12" behind Velits and Kessiakoff.

Leipheimer and Vinokourov are at 32"

The peloton with the yellow jersey is at 3'00".

15:04Sagan and Oss at 2'00"

On the approach to the site of the intermediate sprint, Sagan and Oss are 2'00" behind the two stage leaders.

15:0325 riders at 25"

Velits and Kessiakoff are still at the front of the stage. They are 25" ahead of a group of 25 that includes: Moinard, Horner, Kern, Malacarne, Rolland, Izaguirre, Scarponi, Marzano, Basso, Koren, Martin, Riblon, Kadri, Feillu, Hoogerland, Ten Dam, Trofimov, Valverde, Kiryienka, Sorensen, Vinokourov and Weening.

14:57Gustav Larsson quits the Tour

Gustav Larsson (VCD) is now also out of the Tour de France. He's the second rider from Vacansoleil to quit the race during the 11th stage.

14:55Kruiswijk crashes

Kruiswijk (RAB) is one rider to have crashed on the downhill. He is back on his bike and racing again.

14:5319km descent

The downhill that the riders are currently on is 19km long. Velits and Kessiakoff continue to lead the stage with an advantage of 50" on Valverde's group of 21.

14:53Sagan and Oss attack peloton

Sagan and Oss are the two Liquigas riders who have attacked the peloton on the descent.

14:51Wiggins 2'55" behind stage leaders...

Boasson Hagen (SKY) is the rider leading the yellow jersey's peloton that is 2'55" behind the two stage leaders: Velits and Kessiakoff.

14:49Porte discusses descending...

There's some commentary from observers who seem to want to suggest that the Sky riders aren't so good on the descents. What does Sky's Richie Porte think about that? “They seem to like to say that but I guess they only see the television feed and they're not in the race," the Australian told LeTour.fr this morning. "But it's their right to say whatever they want but at the end of the day that we have to get out there and ride our bikes. That's what we do.”

On the descent, Porte...

14:48Kessiakoff the virtual leader of the climbing classification

Kessiakoff started the stage in equal second place in the category he had led for a couple of days. The Swedish Astana rider is now the virtual leader of the climbing classification again.

He and Veltis (OPQ) have a lead of 40" on the other escapees...

14:45Velits attacking descent

The two who sped ahead in the final metres of the first climb - Kessiakoff and Velits - are continuing with their attack early on the descent of the Madeleine.

14:44Result of col de la Madeleine

1. Peter Velits (OPQ) 25pts

2. Kessiakoff (AST) 20pts

3. Kern (EUC) 16pts

4. Sorensen (STB) 14pts

5. Scarponi LAM) 12pts

6. Rolland (EUC) 10pts - 20"

7. Feillu (SAU) 8pts

8. Kiryienka (MOV) 6pts

9. Vinokourov (AST) 4pts

10. Valverde (MOV) 2pts

The peloton is at the top 2'55" behind the escapees.

14:41Velits takes 25 points

Velits has led Kessiakoff over the top of the col de la Madeleine. Full results of this climb will follow shortly...

14:40Kessiakoff and Velits speed ahead

Kessiakoff (AST) and Velits (OPQ) are now going head-to-head to try and get the 25 points for first over the first climb.

14:39Feillu challenges Europcar

Kern is back at the front of the lead group after a brief surge from Feillu. They are inside the final kilometre of this climb and Kessiakoff is marking Kern with Velits and Scarponi and Sorensen reacting...

14:38Bouet out of lead group

There are now 26 men in the lead of the stage. Bouet  and Riblon (ALM) have been dropped in the last few minutes...

14:37Kern lifts the tempo

Malacarne (EUC) has led the escape for a long time but now Kern (EUC) is tapping out the tempo ahead of Kessiakoff (AST) and Velits. They are inside the final 3km of the col de la Madeleine.

14:3528 lead by two minutes

The 28 escapees are now 2'00" ahead of the peloton that has been led by Boasson Hagen (SKY) all the way up the Madeleine climb.

14:35Six from Sky leading peloton

Following EBH up the first climb of the day are five other Sky riders, including Wiggins in the yellow jersey.

14:3328 in the lead

Izaguirre (EUS) has join the lead group at 36.5km. The composition of the 28 man break is:

Moinard (BMC), Horner (RNT), Kern, Malacarne and Rolland (EUC), Izaguirre (EUS) Scarponi and Marzano (LAM), Koren and Basso (LIQ), Martin (GRS), Kadri, Bouet and Riblon (ALM), Feillu (SAU), Hoogerland (VCD), Ten Dam and Kruiswijk (RAB), Valverde and Kiryienka (MOV), C. Sorensen (STB), Kessiakoff, Kiserlovski and Vinokourov (AST), Leipheimer and P. Velits (OPQ), Weening (OGE).

14:30Bouet joins the lead group

Bouet (ALM) is now riding with the 26 other stage leaders. Izaguirre (EUS) is about to be the 28th rider in the group that is currently 1'50" ahead of the peloton.

14:28Yellow added to Wiggins' bike

There are a number of different Pinarello frames being used by the Sky team in this year's Tour de France. one of the mechanics explained to LeTour.fr the other day that the ones with no paint (ie. the black frame) are about 140g lighter than ones that include the team's famous 'blue line'.

Wiggins is now riding a bike that has yellow where blue is added to the usual team frames.

14:26Westra abandons

Lieuwe 'The Beast' Westra has just quit the Tour de France. The Dutchman's retirement brings the total number of riders in the race down to 173.

14:24Gerrans dropped

Gerrans (OGE) is the latest rider to lose contact with the bunch that continues to be led by Edvald Boasson Hagen (SKY).

14:23New bike for Monfort

Monfort (RNT) has had to change his bike and he's now being supported by a team-mate to rejoin the peloton.

14:23Maxime Monfort: My level was already the same

Speaking before the start of the stage to LeTour.fr, Maxime Monfort (7th overall, at 4'23”), said that there is an opportunity for him to fight for a place in the top 10 overall: “Now we are in command of the team standings and it's a prize we believe is worth chasing. Our team has two riders in the top 10 overall – Monfort himself, and Haimar Zubeldia in sixth), and it's still an interesting group performance. In my case, I have the opportunity to defend a spot in the top 10, which...

14:227km to climb

Bouet (ALM) and Izaguirre (EUS) are 30" behind the 26 stage leaders. The yellow jersey's group is at 1'30" with 7km to go before reaching the top of the Madeleine climbs.

14:20Porte: Grand Colombier at an average of 370 watts

LeTour.fr contacted one of the Sky team's super-domestiques, Richie Porte at midday today to talk about his role. He makes setting the pace on the climbs look easy so we asked if he could explain what sort of power he puts out when he's leading Wiggins up the climbs. “It's not easy is it? But it's really just a continuation of what we've been doing all year,” said the Tasmanian. “Yesterday we knew that Nibali was going to attack – that's what happened on that exact same road in the...

14:19Scarponi best of escape group

The best placed of the 26 stage leaders on GC after 10 stages is Michele Scarponi (LAM) who is 15th overall after finishing second yesterday. He is 7'14" behind Wiggins on GC.

14:1526 lead two by 1'00"

There are 26 men in the lead group and then comes a counter attack from Izaguirre, Burghardt, Bouet and Pineau who are at 1'10"... and the peloton is at 1'40".

14:14Compsotion of the lead group

Moinard (BMC), Horner (RNT), Kern, Malacarne and Rolland (EUC), Scarponi and Marzano (LAM), Koren and Basso (LIQ), Martin (GRS), Kadri and Riblon (ALM), Feillu (SAU), Hoogerland (VCD), Ten Dam and Kruiswijk (RAB), Valverde and Kiryienka (MOV), C. Sorensen (STB), Kessiakoff, Kiserlovski and Vinokourov (AST), Leipheimer and P. Velits (OPQ), Weening (OGE) are the riders in the lead of the stage.

They have nine kilometres to go before reaching the top of the col de la Madeleine.

14:12Four catch 22 leaders

There are now 26 men in the lead of the stage. Leipheimer's four have caught the Vinokourov group.

14:11Charteau the last to win the Madeleine points

The last time the Tour's route included the col de la Madeleine was in 2010. The first over the top was Anthony Charteau (not in the race this year) and the Frenchman would ultimately win the polka-dot jersey that year.

That was also the day that Cadel Evans led the Tour... but collapsed (largely because of the pain of injuries sustained in a crash the day before) near the top of the Madeleine and handed the overall lead to Andy Schleck.

14:09Burghardt attacks peloton

A second BMC rider is trying to put himself in the escape group. Burghardt is the rider who has recently surged ahead of the peloton.

14:08Four counter-attackers: 20" behind...

Leipheimer's quartet is 20" behind the group of 22 who are at the front of the stage.

14:07Peloton at 1'05"

At the 27km mark, the peloton is 1'05" behind the Vinokourov group.

14:06Trofimov also in lead group

The Katusha rider who is in the lead group is Yuriy Trofimov.

There are four between the leaders and the peloton - at 20". They are: Moinard (BMC), Marzano (LAM), Ten Dam (RAB) and Leipheimer (OPQ).

14:04Composition of lead group

Horner (RNT), Kern, Malacarne and Rolland (EUC), Scarponi (LAM), Koren and Basso (LIQ), Martin (GRS), Kadri and Riblon (ALM), Feillu (SAU), Hoogerland (VCD), Kruiswijk (RAB), Valverde and Kiryienka (MOV), C. Sorensen (STB), Kessiakoff, Kiserlovski and Vinokourov (AST), P. Velits (OPQ) and Weening (OGE) are the riders who are currently in the lead of the stage.

They are 55" ahead of the peloton.

14:01Holm: We'd really like [Levi] to try...

When Brian Holm spoke to LeTour.fr before the start of stage 11 he spoke about the chances of Levi Leipheimer today. The team leader is ranked 19th overall after 10 stages. What can we expect from him en route to La Toussuire? “Normally I would love him to try something. He has to get out there. Just hanging on to the front group doesn't yield a lot and it doesn't do anything for the team. We cannot expect him to be flying here and, looking back, it's easy to understand why he's not in the...

13:59Boasson Hagen leads peloton

There are 21 riders ahead of the peloton that is still being led by the Norwegian champion, Edvald Boasson Hagen (who has six Sky team-mates in his wake).

13:56Leipheimer trying something...

Leipheimer is also ahead of the peloton and now trying to ride across to the Vinokourov group that is six seconds ahead of the Rolland trio.

13:56Marzano with Leipheimer

The Lampre rider with Leipheimer is Marco Marzano.

13:55Rolland, Kern and Feillu chasing

There are three Frenchman now trying to get across to the lead group. They are: Rolland (EUC), Kern (EUC) and Feillu (SAU).

13:5414 in the lead

The Horner group has caught the Valverde group and there are now 14 men at the front of the stage.

13:53Six in counter-attack

There are six riders 10" behind the seven stage leaders. The counter-attack is composed of: Horner (RNT), Malacarne (EUC), Kadri (ALM), Basso (LIQ), P. Velits (OPQ) and Weening (OGE).

13:52The eight stage leaders

The eight men who are in the front of stage 11 are: Koren (LIQ), Riblon (ALM), Martin (GRS), Hoogerland (VCD), C. Sorensen (STB), Kieserlovski and Vinokourov (AST). They have a lead of 32" on the yellow jersey's peloton.

13:51Valverde leaves Scarponi

Scarponi is unable to match the pace of Valverde (MOV) who is now riding with the seven stage leaders.

13:48Scarponi joins Valverde

Scarponi (second yesterday) is now riding with Valverde as they attack the peloton that is led by Boasson Hagen (SKY).

We can also report that Voeckler (EUC) has already lost contact with the yellow jersey's peloton.

13:47Seven lead other escapees by 12"

The lead group of seven has a gain of 12" on the remnants of the early escape. We now see Valverde trying to bridge to the lead group.

13:46Seven now in the lead...

Koren (LIQ), Martin (GRS), Riblon (ALM), Hoogerland (VCD), Sorensen (STB), Vinokourov and Kieserlovski (AST) are the seven riders who are now in the lead of the 11th stage. They are 20" ahead of the peloton.

13:44Gesink out of lead group

Kieserlovski is 10" ahead of the next best rider. Gesink is no longer in the escape group (despite being the man to instigate the move).

Now Albasini has been joined by Weening in the move that's only a little way ahead of the peloton.

13:42Sorensen best on GC of escapees

Of all the riders that are ahead of the yellow jersey's peloton, the best on GC after 10 stages is Chris Sorensen (STB) who started the day ranked 28th overall, 20'01" behind Wiggins.

13:41Kieserlovski leading escape

Robert Kieserlovski was one of the four Astana riders in the group of 31 that escaped in the first 5km. He is now on his own at the front of the stage.

13:40Three in counter-attack

Basso (LIQ), Kadri (ALM) and Feillu (SAU) are now in pursuit of the 30 stage leaders.

13:39Peloton 25" behind 30

Hutarovich has lost contact with the lead group so there are now 30 men in the escape that's 25" ahead of the peloton.

13:38Composition of the escape group

Burghardt, Cumming, Gilbert (BMC)

Popovych (RNT)

Malacarne (EUC)

Perez (EUS)

Bole (LAM)

Koren (LIQ)

Martin (GRS)

Cherel and Riblon (ALM)

Dumoulin (COF)

Hoogerland (VCD)

Paolini (KAT)

Hutarovich (FDJ)

Gesink and Kruiswijk (RAB)

Karpets (MOV)

Sorensen and Sorensen (STB)

Grivko, Iglinskiy, Kieserlovski and Vinokourov (AST)

De Weert and Pineau (OPQ)

Albasini (OGE)

De...

13:35Voeckler at the back

As the riders approach the foot of the col de la Madeleine, the rider in the polka-dot jersey - Thomas Voeckler (EUC) - is the back of the bunch that is led by Voigt (RNT). This group is 55" behind Vinokourov's escape group that is now on the early slopes of the first mountain.

13:33Brian Holm: a quick appraisal of the stage...

Before the start of the stage LeTour.fr contacted Brian Holm from Omega Pharma-Quickstep and asked for his appraisal of some of the riders on his team. The Danish directeur sportif first offered a quick overview of how he sees the race for the general classification in the 99th Tour de France. “With Sky it's obvious that they have the potential to kill everybody's morale but van den Broeck and Nibali, for example, at least still had the courage to try.”
We've seen Sylvain Chavanel...

13:3248 secondenDe groep Gesink heeft 48" op het peloton. Daar is RadioShack boos omdat er geen andere ploegen zijn die tempo willen maken.
13:32Col de la Madeleine starts at the 14km mark

The Sky team seems ready to let the escapees increase their advantage. There is now 40" between the 31 and the peloton and, any minute now, the road will begin to rise as the start of the col de la Madeleine is at the 14km mark of today's 148km stage.

13:31Gilbert in the move

Gilbert (BMC) is one of the riders in the escape. Dumoulin, Gesink, Dan Martin, Grivko, Vinokourov are also there. At the 10km mark, the 31 attacking riders are 25" ahead of the bunch.

13:29Voeckler at the rear of peloton

With Bernie Eisel and Cavendish now at the head of the peloton, it looks like the escapees will be given some leeway. Sky seems to like the selection of men who are still trying to create today's escape. Included in the early move are Grivko, Vinokourov, Gesink and Burghardt... we'll post the full selection if they are able to stay clear for another couple of minutes. At the 9km mark, they are 20" ahead.

13:2731 man aan kopDe 13 vluchters hebben gezelschap gekregen van een groep renners die ook uit het peloton waren weggesprongen. Er rijden 31 renners aan de leiding. Ze hebben een kleine voorsprong. Robert Gesink, Steven Kruiswijk en Johnny Hoogerland zitten erbij.
13:27Lead group up to 31 riders

There are now 31 riders ahead of the peloton but the advantage is down to 12" and it doesn't look like this early escape is going to survive.

13:26Rogers, the Sky rider at the front of peloton

There are still a number of men jumping ahead of the peloton but Michael Rogers is the first from the Sky team to move to the head of the bunch...

13:25Gesink instigated escape

The riders who started this move that is now 18" ahead was Robert Gesink (RAB). He is now on his own at the front of the stage after putting some distance into the other 12 who were with him at the 5km mark.

13:2313 in the escape

Andriy Grivko (AST) is again on the attack. The Ukrainian is part of a group of 13 that has a lead of a couple of hundred metres on the peloton.

13:2313 lead by 8" and 16"

There are a few riders trying to catch the front group that is ahead by eight seconds. At the 4.5km mark, the peloton is at 16".

13:22Het peloton laat het lopenIn het peloton kijkt iedereen naar RadioShack, maar dat team wil geen tempo maken. Jens Voigt doet het rustig aan. Het lijkt dat de koplopers weg mogen.
13:1912 in the lead

There are now 12 riders on the attack and there are eight others trying to bridge the gap to the front group.

13:18Racing in stage 11

The peloton has reached the site of the official start. Christian Prudhomme has waved the white flag to signal the start of racing at 1.17pm and immediately we see Gesink (RAB) and Burghardt (BMC) go on the attack.

There are 174 riders still in the race now that Cancellara (RNT) has gone home.

13:16Prize classification review: part 04 ?? white jersey

Tejay van Garderen (BMC) may have slipped down the rankings a little after finishing 27th in stage 10 (3'33” behind Voeckler – and 17” behind his GC rivals) but he still leads the youth classification. His advantage over Rein Taaramae (COF) – the only other man to have worn the white jersey in the Tour of 2012 – is now just 25”. The youngest rider in the race, Thibaut Pinot (FDJ) is in third place in this category that's open to riders born after 1 January 1987. The Frenchman is...

13:15Prize classification review: part 03 ?? polka-dot jersey

Thomas Voeckler is the fourth rider to wear the polka-dot jersey in the 99th Tour. He earned all of his 28 points thanks to his winning move in stage 10. He was fourth over the cote du Corlier and first to the top of the Grand Colombier, taking 25 points at the first ‘hors categorie' climb of the 2012 race.
The winner of yesterday's stage, has a lead of seven points over the runner-up in Bellegarde-sur-Valserine, Michele Scarponi (LAM), and the former leader of the climbing...

13:14Van Garderen returns...

The leader of the youth classification Tejay van Garderen (BMC) is back in the peloton after his recent puncture.

13:14Prize classification review: part 02 ?? green jersey

Peter Sagan (LIQ) and Matt Goss (OGE) were in the escape composed of 25 men in stage 10. They both earned points at the intermediate sprint. It was the first time in the 2012 Tour that the Tasmanian took first place at the sprint in the middle of the stage, earning 20 points. Second was taken by Yauheni Hutarovich (FDJ) and third went to Sagan.
The Slovakian who has already won three stages this year is, however, still in command of the green jersey with a total of 232 points. But Goss...

13:12Prize classification review: part 01 ?? yellow jersey

The only change to the top 10 because of stage 10 was a swapping of the order of the riders ranked 8th, 9th and 10th overall. Tejay van Garderen (BMC) was 8th, he's now 10th (at 5'31), Roche (ALM) was 10th, he's now 9th (at 5'29”) and van den Broecke (LTB) was 9th, he's now 8th (at 4'48”).
Bradley Wiggins (SKY) continues to lead the general classification, with a lead of 1'53” on Cadel Evans (BMC) and 2'07” on Chris Froome (SKY).
Vincenzo Nibali (LIQ) tried to gain time...

13:11Van Garderen calls BMC team car...

Still in the neutral zone, Tejay van Garderen needs a new rear wheel.

13:10Grote groep op kopEr zijn 13 koplopers. Naast Gesink hebben we Grivko gezien. Er is nog een tweede groep die tussen het peloton en de koplopers rondrijdt. De verschillen zijn nog klein.
13:09We rijden!De startvlag is gevallen. De renners zijn begonnen aan de rit. Robert Gesink rijdt aan kop van het peloton.
13:09Al meteen een kopgroepEr ontstaat een kopgroepje. Robert Gesink is erbij, net als Johnny Hoogerland. Het lijkt dat de groep weg mag, maar het peloton twijfelt omdat er steeds meer renners de oversteek maken naar de kopgroep.
13:09Cancellara no longer in the peloton

The winner of the prologue, Fabian Cancellara (RNT) is no longer in the 2012 Tour de France. He has gone home to be with his wife who is soon due to give birth to their second child.

“I am not only a bike rider,” said Cancellara in the statement from RadioShack-Nissan that was issued earlier today.

“I am also a husband and father with another baby on the way. It is my personal wish to be present when my wife Stefanie gives birth to our second child. That 'trophy' is more...

13:08In de neutrale zoneDe renners zijn in de neutrale zone. Fabian Canellara is er niet meer bij. De Zwitser is naar huis gegaan om bij zijn vrouw te zijn. Die staat op punt van bevallen.
13:07Feeding can start at 30km

As the peloton makes its way through the neutral zone, Jean-François Pescheux has explained that feeding [from team cars] in the 11th stage can start at the 30km mark.

13:05Wiggins on the start line

All of the riders are assembled for the start of the stage. Wiggins is at the front with Sagan to his right and van Garderen in the white jersey to his left.

Thomas Voeckler is also on the front with the polka-dot he took thanks to his first place over the col du Grand Colombier in stage 10.

13:03Welcome to the live coverage of stage 11 of the 2012 Tour

The 148km 11th stage of the 99th Tour de France, from Albertville to La Toussuire is due to start at 1.05pm. Live coverage of the race will start shortly. On the menu today are four climbs - including two rated 'Hors Categorie': the col de la Madeleine which rises to 2,000m, with the top at the 40km mark; and the col de la Croix de Fer which is 2,067m high at the 93km mark.

The sun is shining in the Savoie department and the temperature is mild (around 23 degrees Celsius) but it's...

13:01Welkom bij het verslag van de elfde etappeDe renners wachten op de start van de etappe. Het wordt een zware bergrit. De rit is 148 kilometer lang.

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