Sunday July 15th, 2012

Stage 14Limoux / Foix

Start 12h25 GMT 2+

Key moments

video15.07.2012 in 23:00Summary of the race


Summary of the race

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Stage summary15.07.2012 in 17:47Sanchez success on a day of sabotage...

© A.S.O.

Luis Leon Sanchez knows how to attack, how to climb and how to descend. He is one of the most aggressive men in the peloton and even though he was plagued with injuries sustained in a crash in stage one, he insisted on staying in the race even though he only has three team-mates along for support. Never mind if logic dictates that he should limp through to Paris: he wanted to give Rabobank a reward for what has been a Tour plagued with problems. He would ultimately win his fourth stage of...

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video15.07.2012 in 16:00Interview - Stage Winner


Interview - Stage Winner

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Sporting stakes16.07.2012 in 11:00Knocking on the door to the Pyrenees

The 15th stage is a short one from Samatan to Pau. The city hosting the finish trades on the slogan: “Pau: Porte des Pyrenees” and although the 2012 Tour de France will soon be knocking on the door of the second major mountain range, this serves as a race for the sprinters and/or the opportunists. Peter Sagan slots into many categories – including, as we learned in stage 14, climber – but his advantage in the race for the green jersey is so large that even the insistent challenge...

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interview15.07.2012 in 19:02The highlight of the festival for Rabobank

It has been plagued with problems early in the 2012 Tour but Rabobank– with less than half its original line-up – is the winner of the team prize in stage 14 thanks to Luis Léon Sanchez's win in Foix and Steven Kruiswijk (who was 11th). It helps that this pair was part of the escape and thus the outfit finished with a lead of 8'51” on the next-best squad (Liquigas-Cannondale).
For its part, RadioShack-Nissan is clearly racing for the overall team prize. It has five men in the...

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interview15.07.2012 in 18:53Kessiakoff: Very stressful, nervous and very dangerous

With the real Pyrenean stages yet to come, Sweden's Frederik Kessiakoff still leads the climbing classification. Here's what he had to say in Foix after stage 14.

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interview15.07.2012 in 18:52Sanchez: With Gilbert and Sagan in the break, I had my doubts

Had it not been for the spate of punctures, the focus of the 14th stage would have been entirely on the panache of Luis Léon Sanchez who showed enormous fighting spirit to just stay in the Tour after a crash on the first Sunday. Now, two weeks later, he's added another to his tally of stage wins...

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interview15.07.2012 in 18:36Van Garderen: I thought we had more team-mates in there

The rider in the lead of the youth classification was near Cadel Evans at the time the BMC leader punctured but Tejay van Garderen didn't stop to help his leader because he thought there were others there to offer assistance...

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interview15.07.2012 in 18:23Wiggins: Waiting seemed the honourable thing to do

With rumours of over 30 punctures in the peloton - plus flat tyres for five motorcycles that were part of the race entourage, and a number of cars - it was obvious that the 14th stage of the Tour de France was affected by sabotage. Immediately after the podium protocol the race leader didn't have any details of the incident but he tried to make sense of it all...

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video15.07.2012 in 11:45Analysis of the stage


Analysis of the stage

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video15.07.2012 in 10:30The day's route


The day's route

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17:39Peloton arrives at the finish 18'15" behind Sanchez

The yellow jersey has arrived at the finish 18"15" behind Sanchez.

17:25Evans back with the yellow jersey group

Only one rider was willing to attack the yellow jersey group after the incident of Evans - Pierre Rolland.

We can report that Evans has now, finally, rejoined the group with Wiggins.

17:23The top five in stage 14

The day will be remembered for several things - mechanical woes key amongst them - but that takes nothing away from the triumph of Luis Leon Sanchez. The top five in stage 14 is:

1. Luis Leon Sanchez (ESP) RAB - 4h50'29"

2. Peter Sagan (SVK) LIQ at 47"

3. Sandy Casar (FRA) FDJ at 47"

4. Philippe Gilbert (BEL) BMC at 47"

5. Gorka Izaguirre (ESP) EUS at 47"

17:21Sagan takes 2nd place

Sagan has led his quartet to the line about 45" behind Sanchez.

17:20Luis Leon Sanchez: wins in style...!

That's it: win number four in the Tour de France for Luis Leon Sanchez.

17:191,000m before wins again...

Luis Leon Sanchez is going to give Spain its first win in the 2012 Tour. He is one of just four Rabobank riders left in the race and he's inside the final kilometre with, essentially, an unbeatable advantage. He has started to salute well before the line. Wait for the gesture to the heavens as he always dedicates his wins to his brother...

17:18Sagan wins fighting spirit award

The rider in the green jersey will collect a red dossard for stage 15 as the winner of the fighting spirit award today.

17:17Sanchez destined to win the stage

Sanchez is less than 2km from the finish of the stage. He is 45" ahead of Sagan's quartet.

17:16Liquigas and Lotto riding...

Evans has the support of many team-mates but his group is now in hot pursuit of the yellow jersey's peloton that is certainly no longer hanging around for the rider who suffered a complete nightmare with mechanical incidents.

There is 40" between the group that's led by Liquigas and VDB and the BMC team leader.

17:154km to go for Sanchez

Sanchez is less than 4km from the line. He has a lead of 35" on Gilbert, Izaguirre, Sagan and Casar.

17:14Peloton 20km from the finish

Evans is 30" behind Wiggins with 20km to go.

17:11Pay day for Rabobank...?

Sanchez is now 25" ahead of Gilbert, Sagan, Izaguirre and Casar. There might be only four Rabobank riders left in the race but one of them looks likely to win a stage.

17:10Sanchez leads by 20"

There is 20" between the stage leader and the four chasers. Sanchez seems likely to go on and win his fourth stage of the Tour de France. BUt the four chasers are all swapping off in an attempt to reel him in.

17:0810km to go

With 10km to go, Sanchez has a lead of 12" on Sagan, Izaguirre, Casar and Gilbert.

17:07Multiple wheel changes for Evans...

This will be the stage that's remembered for the woes of the defending champion on the final climb. Evans has changed a wheel at least three times and he recently had to stop again to get a new front wheel.

There have been punctures for many of the riders in the GC group.

17:06Sanchez attacks the lead group

Sanchez has decided it's time to attack. He has hit out with 11km to go and there's been no reaction from the four others.

17:05Five in the lead...

With 12km to go, there are five in the lead of the stage: Sagan (LIQ), Izaguirre (EUS), Casar (FDJ), Sanchez (RAB) and Gilbert (BMC).

17:04Scarponi now needs a wheel

Scarponi is the latest GC rider to have a puncture.

Wiggins is back with the group he was part of before he changed his bike.

17:03Kiserlovksi out of the Tour

Robert Kiserlovski (AST) is out of the Tour. He has apparently broken his collarbone in a crash.

17:02Evans 1'10" behind Wiggins...

There is a truce from the GC riders who are 16'00" behind the stage leaders but with Wiggins taking a new bike there's no attacks from the likes of Nibali et al. They are 1'10" ahead of Evans.

17:01Wiggins calls the team car

Wiggins has dropped behind the other riders to consult the team car: he's been waiting for Evans but it's going to long wait as the Australian was faced with utter turmoil at the top of the climb.

Wiggins has taken a new bike and is racing again.

17:00Three in the lead...

While there's all sort of oddities taking place with the GC riders, we can report that Sagan, Izaguirre and Casar are still in the lead of the stage. They are less than 17km from the finish.

16:58Rolland on the attack...

While Wiggins wants to show some respect for the problems that Evans is experiencing Rolland doesn't care less, he's on the attack. And now we see the yellow jersey in debate with a RadioShack rider who is also ready to go on the attack on the downhill.

16:57Evans gets another wheel...!

The BMC team car has finally fixed the bike problems for Evans but it's a woeful scene for the defending champion. He is complely out of contact with the yellow jersey but Wiggins is seemingly respecting the problems that Evans has had...

16:55Burghardt there to help Evans...

It's a complete comedy of errors for the BMC team as its leader is utterly stranded at the top of the final climb with a flat back tyre. He has FINALLY been given a new wheel but it took an army of people to remedy the situation.

16:55Wiggins not racing...

With Evans utterly stranded, Wiggins is signalling a truce in his group. They are respecting the fact that the Australian has been caught between a rock and a hard place...

16:53Kloden gets a wheel from Monfort

Kloden has dropped out of the yellow jersey bunch with a puncture but he has taken a wheel from Monfort and is now chasing the group that is led by Wiggins... who is shaking his head as he tries to find a path through the huge crowd at the top of the final climb.

16:53Evans stranded...

Evans is standing on the road without a wheel and there is no one there to fix it for him.

16:5112" between Casar and chasing pair

Gilbert and Sanchez are 12" behind Casar and Izaguirre but Sagan is the fastest on the downhill. Only Izaguirre dares to try and match the pace of the Slovakian...

16:5015 in yellow jersey group

There are only 15 men in the group with Wiggo, including two more Sky riders - Froome and Porte.

16:47Sagan races into the lead

Casar has been caught and passed by Sagan at the front of the stage. But there are, essentially, three in the lead: Sagan followed by Casar, followed by Izaguirre.

16:46Porte still leading peloton

There are three Sky riders at the front of the first peloton. It includes Porte (in the lead), then Froome and then Wiggins. Evans is right on the wheel of the yellow jersey and Nibali is to the right of the Australian.

16:44Sagan and Izaguirre 10" behind Casar

Izaguirre and Sagan are actually the riders in third and fourth (at 10"). Then comes Sanchez and Gilbert... but we don't have a time check on the riders in fourth and fifth place (yet).

16:43Casar leads by 20"

Sanchez and Gilbert are in second and third. They are 20" behind Casar.

16:42Peloton on the steep section...

Richie Porte is leading the peloton 15'15" behind the escapees. The yellow jersey's bunch is down to about 30 men and it is about to reach the steepest section of the final climb. Van den Broeck and Rolland are just nearby and Nibali has one rider along for support.

Evans is on the wheel of his former team-mate (VDB) and Wiggins is following the wheel of Froome.

16:40Result of Mur de Peguere

1. Sandy Casar (FDJ) 10pts

2. Izaguirre (EUS) 8pts - 5"

3. Sagan (LIQ) 6pts

4. Gilbert (BMC) 4pts - at 40"

5. Sanchez (RAB) 2pts

6. Paulinho (STB) 1pt - at 58"

Kruiswijk is 1'55" behind at the top and Vorganov is at 2'10".

16:38Casar claims 10 points

The FDJ rider has claimed first place on the Mur de Peguere.

16:37Sandy on his own...

Sandy Casar (FDJ) is inside the final 500m of the final climb. He has a lead of about 50 metres on Izaguirre who is closely followed by Sagan. Behind this pair is Gilbert and Sanchez.

16:36Five in the lead

Casar is still trying to snap the elastic and he's put a bit of distance into Izagiurre and Gilbert but there's not much between the five at the front of the stage.

16:34Sagan at 8"

Sagan is still within sight of the four stage leaders. His last time check was 8" but the steep section of the final climb is behind them. Casar is out of the saddle and accelerating at exactly the time that Sagan was about to catch the lead group.

16:32Still four in the lead

Sanchez has done all the work since Kruiswijk peeled off and let his team-mate come through. Gilbert has marked the Spaniard and on the wheel of the BMC rider is Izaguirre and Casar. That's been the order since the lead group split.

16:32Lotto move around Sky

The Lotto-Belisol team now has four men at the head of the peloton.

16:29Sagan hunts down leading four

Sagan was 10" behind Sanchez's quartet and riding with Minard but the green jersey is closing in on the leaders...

16:28Cav gives it one last turn of pace...

The peloton is 16 minutes behind the escape. Cavendish has been ahead of the yellow jersey all day and the world champion is currently at the front early on the final climb of the stage.

16:25Sanchez ahead of Gilbert

With 42km to go, Sanchez's turn of pace is knocking a few riders out of the lead group. Gilbert is on the wheel of the Spaniard but Kruiswijk has been dropped.

Izarguirre (EUS) and Casar (FDJ) have also come back on terms with the two at the front.

16:24Escapees arrive at the brutal part of the climb

Sections of the final climb today are at gradients of over 20 per cent. Kruiswijk's turn is over and now Sanchez is leading Gilbert on one of the truly steep sections.

16:22Two Rabobankers lead escape

Kruiswijk is currently setting the pace of the escape just ahead of Sanchez. There hasn't yet been an attack on any of the climbs today: the front 11 are sharing the pace of the break, and Sky is tapping out the tempo of the bunch that's 15'40" behind...

16:17Masters of the descent in lead group

Of the 11 in the lead, several have a reputation as being maestros of the descent.

The escape group is: Gilbert (BMC), Gautier (EUC), Izaguirre (EUS), Sagan (LIQ), Minard (ALM), Vorganov (KAT), Casar (FDJ), Kruiswijk and Sanchez (RAB), Paulinho (STB) and M. Velits (OPQ).

Two of Sanchez's three Tour stage wins were achieved largely as a result of his panache going downhill. He attacked the final descent on the road to Aurillac in 2008 and won the stage on his own. And when he...

16:1211 in the lead again...

Gautier has rejoined the lead group that is on the early slopes of the Mur de Péguère.

16:10Gilbert leads through Massat

The BMC rider in the escape group is Philippe Gilbert. He is at the front as the break goes through Massat 48km from the finish in Foix.

Now it's time to climb again.

The Mur de Peguere is 9.3km long with an average gradient of 7.9 per cent.

Gautier is 20" behind the 10 stage leaders.

16:05Gautier still chasing

Gautier has not been able to get closer to the lead group. The last time check has the Europcar rider 40" behind the 10 at the front of the stage.

16:04Rolland just wanted a jacket...

Rolland almost looked apologetic for being near the front of the peloton. He seemed to indicate to Wiggins, 'Ah, i'm only here to collect a jersey before the downhill... that okay with you...?'

The bunch has crested the Port de Lers 14'15" behind the escapees.

16:02Knees sets the pace...

Eisel is no longer at the front of the bunch but Sky is still in control. Knees is now setting the pace for Wiggins but Rolland appears to be getting ready to pounce. The Frenchman is second in the climbing classification but there are no more points on offer at the top... so we can discount that as the reason for him looking twitchy.

15:58New jersey for Wiggo

The race leader is putting on a long sleeve jersey near the head of the peloton. Eisel continues to set the pace of the bunch and Knees is right behind the Austrian. The world champion is still at the front at the time that some riders are losing touch...

15:56Gautier at 40"

The 10 leaders are 40" ahead of Gautier and the peloton is at 14'30"...

15:5310 in the lead

Gautier has a considerable chase ahead of him after the recent mechanical problem. He is well behind the 10 men who he had been riding with since the 56km mark.

15:52Result of Port de Lers

The points for the second climb of stage 14 were won by:

1. Sergio Paulinho (STB) 10pts

2. Eduard Vorganov (KAT) 8pts

3. Philippe Gilbert (BMC) 6pts

4. Steven Kruiswijk (RAB) 4pts

5. Martin Velits (OPQ) 2pts

6. Luis Leon Sanchez (RAB) 1pt

15:51Gautier out of lead group

Gautier has had to change his bike after a problem with his rear derailleur...

15:49Paulinho leads escape over the top...

The Saxo Bank-Tinkoff Bank rider in the escape has taken the 10 points for first on the Port de Lers. (Full result to follow shortly...)

15:48Long sleeve jersey for Sagan...

Rain is now falling and the riders are adding layers of clothing. Sagan has just taken a long sleeve jersey at the front of the stage. His group of 11 is less than 500m from the top of the Port de Lers.

15:45Eisel still leading peloton...

The bunch is only just taking time out of the leaders. Eisel and Cavendish are still at the front of the group that started the climb 15'00" behind the 11 escapees - they are now at 14'30".

15:4210 degrees on Port de Lers

The temperature at the start of the stage was 19 degrees Celsius. There's a little bit of rain now and, as the leaders get to within 2km of the top of the second climb, the temperature is down to just 10 degrees.

15:37Port de Lers: cat-3 in 2011

The Port de Lers was part of the 14th stage in last year's Tour. Today it's rated category-one and last year it was considered category-three...

15:34Izaguirre first over Port de Lers last year

The Tour's itinerary in 2011 included the climb that the riders are currently on. The rider who took first at the top was Gorka Izaguirre (EUS) who is one of the 11-man group that's at the front of the race today.

15:335km yet to climb

The leaders are inside the final 5km of the Port de Lers. There have been no attacks on this category-one climb.

Eisel and Cavendish are at the front of the peloton that is now 14'45" behind Sagan's group.

15:28Peloton is on the Port de Lers

The peloton is snaking its way up the early part of the second climb. It is 15'00" behind the 11 escapees.

15:24Lead over 15 minutes

At the 111km mark, the 11 escapees are 15'05" ahead of the peloton.

15:20Three FDJ riders near front peloton

Sky has been leading the bunch since early today but, at the start of the Port de Lers we see three FDJ-BigMat riders alongside the 'blue line' at the front of the peloton.

15:17Reminder of the 11 escapees

While there have been no attacks yet at the front of the race, it's as good a time as any to remind you of the composition of the escape group. Sagan instigated the move at the 35km. The best on GC of the selection is Vorganov, the champion of Russia, who was 26th overall after 13 stages.

The men in the lead are: Gilbert (BMC), Gautier (EUC), Izaguirre (EUS), Sagan (LIQ), Minard (ALM), Vorganov (KAT), Casar (FDJ), Kruiswijk and Sanchez (RAB), Paulinho (STB) and M. Velits (OPQ).

15:1475km to go

Gautier (EUC) is at the front of the escape group that is inside the final 75km of the stage. Sagan (LIQ) is calling for the team car but all 11 are still together early on the Port de Lers.

15:13Leaders on the climb

The 11 escapees have begun the second climb of the 14th stage with an advantage of 14'15" on the peloton.

15:0780km to go

The escapees are inside the final 80km of the stage. They are 13'30" ahead of the bunch and the ascent of the second climb isn't far away. The Port de Lers is 11.4km long with an average gradient of seven per cent. The top is at the 126.5km mark (64.5km from the finish).

The Port de Lers was on the itinerary in the 1995 Tour when Marco Pantani was the first man to the top.

15:04Greipel takes 9th place points

The peloton has arrived at the site of the sprint 13'20" behind the escapees. The winner of yesterday's stage led the bunch to the line, followed by Eisel, Porte and Rogers of the Sky team.

14:56Half the Rabobank team in today's escape

With five of the Rabobank team now out of the 99th Tour, it's worth noting that half of the remaining riders from the Dutch squad are in the escape today.

Luis Leon Sanchez and Steven Kruiswijk are part of the 11-man move that is now almost 13 minutes ahead of the peloton.

14:51Eight places in Tarascon...

The peloton is over 12 minutes from the intermediate sprint but the first eight places went to:

1. Sagan 20pts

2. Kruiswijk 17pts

3. Casar 15pts

4. Paulinho 13pts

5. Gilbert 11pts

6. Izaguirre 10pts

7. Velits 9pts

8. Sanchez 8pts

14:47First three place at intermediate sprint

Peter Sagan has collected another 20 points for the green jersey.

The order over the line at the 99km mark was:

1. Peter Sagan (LIQ) 20pts

2. Steven Kruiswijk (RAB) 17pts

3. Sandy Casar (FDJ) 15pts...

14:45Leaders near intermediate sprint

The escapees are inside the final kilometres leading to the intermediate sprint... surely the others know what Sagan is going to do.

14:43Maassen: We??ll see what happens later...

“With only four riders left, we've got to try something,” Frans Maassen of the Rabobank team told recently. The directeur sportif is pleased that Luis Leon Sanchez has been able to slot himself into the lead group that's now over 12 minutes ahead of the peloton. The Spaniard has won three stages of the Tour in the past, including one for the Dutch team in St-Flour last year.
“At least we're showing that we are still in the race,” said Maassen. “For a minute we had a...

14:34Average speed for second hour

After a fast start, the pace has eased a little in the second hour of stage 14. The average speed was 40.6km/h. The average speed for the first two hours combined is 43.4km/h.

14:2811 minutes...

The 11 escapees have an advantage of 11 minutes now. The move was started by Sagan at the 35km mark. He took two others with him - Kruiswijk and Paulinho and they were joined in the lead at 56km by eight others.

There are 106km to go for the leaders which means the intermediate sprint is about 16km away. This prime is in Tarascon-sur-Ariege which hosted the start of the stage that finished in Le Cap d'Agde in 1998.

14:20Lead up to 10'00"

Sagan, Gilbert, Izaguirre, Gautier, Minard, Vorganov, Sanchez, Casar, M. Velits, Kruiswijk and Paulinho are 10 minutes ahead of the peloton at the 72km mark.

14:17Hey Sandy, you going...?

It seems that whenever Sandy Casar goes on the attack in the Tour de France, another rider in the escape group is Luis Leon Sanchez. They've already been on the attack together in the 2012 Tour (stage 10). They were first and second in St-Flour in 2011 (Luis ahead of Sandy). They were first and second in St-Girons in 2009 (Luis ahead of Sandy). They were first and second in St-Jean-de Maurienne in 2010 (Sandy ahead of Luis).

There are other examples but this is a start.

14:07The peloton in Lavelanet

The small town of Lavelanet in the Ariege department which is at the 68.5km mark of today's stage has also twice hosted the start of stages of the Tour de France. In 2002, the 13th stage went from Lavelanet to Bezier and David Millar was the winner; six years later the town hosted the start of a stage that finished in Montpellier and Mark Cavendish was the winner.

14:05Four Sky riders answer nature's call...

With the advantage of the escapees growing, we can report that half of the Sky riders have stopped to answer the call of nature in the peloton. This means that the next time check for the 11-man escape is likely to grow.

We can also tell you that Taaramae has just drifted back behind the peloton to talk with his directeur sportif.

The current advantage of Sagan's group is 6'40".

13:59Five of the 11 escapees have previously won at the Tour...

Of the 11 men in the lead of stage 14, five have previously won at least one stage of the race in the past. They are: Gilbert (BMC), Sagan (LIQ), Casar (FDJ), Sanchez (RAB) and Paulinho (STB).

13:564'00" at 61km...

The 11 escapees have an advantage of 4'00" at the 61km mark.

13:5311 lead by 2'00"

The 11 leaders are now 2'00" ahead of the peloton.

Here's a reminder of who is on the attack:Philippe Gilbert (FRA) BMC, Cyril Gautier (FRA) EUC, Gorka Izaguirre (ESP) EUS, Peter Sagan (SVK) LIQ, Sebastien Minard (FRA) ALM, Eduard Vorganov (RUS) KAT, Sandy Casar (FRA) FDJ, Steven Kruiswijk (NED) RAB, Luis Sanchez (ESP) RAB and Martin Velits (SVK) OPQ.

13:50Vorgranov the best of the escapees on GC

Of the 11 in the lead of stage 14, the best on GC after 13 stages is the Russian champion Eduard Vorganov. He started the day ranked 26th overall, 33'59" behind Wiggins.

13:4711 in the lead

Gilbert (BMC), Gautier (EUC), Izaguirre (EUS), Sagan (LIQ), Minard (ALM), Vorganov (KAT), Casar (FDJ), Sanchez and Kruiswijk (RAB), Paulinho (STB) and Velits (OPQ) are now all together at the front of the stage. They are 1'12" ahead of the peloton.

13:44Two pelotons together again

The second peloton has caught up with the yellow jersey's group at the 54km mark. That means there are just 11 men ahead of the main pack:

Sagan, Kruiswijk and Paulinho at the front.

Followed by Gilbert, Gautier, Izaguirre, Minard, Vorganov, Casar, Sanchez and Velits.

Edet's brief counter-attack is over.

13:42Edet making a late bid

Edet (COF) has jumped off the front of the pack and he's now in pursuit of the eight counter-attackers. He is 8" ahead of the peloton.

13:41The eight counter-attackers

The eight men in pursuit of Sagan's trio is:

Gilbert (BMC), Gautier (EUC), Izaguirre (EUS), Minard (ALM), Vorganov (KAT), Casar (FDJ), Sanchez (RAB) and Velits.

They are 18" behind the three at the front.

13:40Barrage called...

The second peloton is coming back; a barrage has been called - ie. to get the team cars out of the gap in between - and this means that there's less than a minute between the first and second groups.

13:38Eight in counter-attack...

Sagan's trio is 30" ahead of a group of eight counter-attackers. The first peloton is at 45" and the second peloton (ie. Schleck etc) are at 1'45".

13:36Casar in counter-attack

The escapees are near the 50km mark and have a lead of 26" on a group of seven (including Casar) and then comes Vorganov (KAT) in a second counter-attack. Then comes the peloton at 49".

13:33Three increase their lead

Sagan's trio is now 32" ahead of the peloton. The move began at the 35km mark and it's been active for about 18km already... but they're not being given a lot of leeway.

13:32Two former stage winners in the escape

Sagan (LIQ), Paulinho (STB) and Kruiswijk (RAB) are 28" ahead of the bunch. Of this trio, two have previously won a stage of the Tour... Paulino and Sagan (who has three from his debut in the race this year).

13:32Fast start to stage 14

The average speed for the first hour was 46.2km/h.

13:29Schleck's group at 1'50"

The second peloton is 1'50" behind the Wiggins group.

Rolland has just returned to the peloton after his puncture.

Sagan's trio is 24" ahead of the yellow jersey's peloton.

13:28Moinard and Kadri in counter-attack

Sagan's trio is 20" ahead of Moinard (BMC) and Kadri (ALM)... these two Frenchmen were in a counter-attack that lasted - ah, about as long as it took to type this newsflash. They're now back in the bunch.

13:26Three escapees over an hour behind Wiggo

Wiggins won't be worried about the move by Sagan, Kruiswijk and Paulinho who are 15" ahead. The best of these on GC after 13 stages is Kruiswijk (RAB) who is 1h01'56" behind the race leader.

The reason that the bunch is chasing the trio is because Sagan (LIQ) is present and, surely, Orica-GreenEdge will be marking him closely.

The escapees are at the 42km mark.

13:22Sagan struggling to gain an advantage

Sagan's attack started at the 35km mark. He has Kruiswijk and Paulinho with him but they are just 8" ahead of the first peloton.

13:21Rolland has a flat tyre

Rolland (EUC) has just punctured at the same time that Radio Tour announced that the Schleck group is now 1'15" behind the peloton with Wiggins in it.

13:20Three lead by 10"

Sagan's trio is now 10" ahead of the peloton. The bunch is still split in two and the maximum deficit announced by Radio Tour for the Schleck group was 55".

13:19The three escapees

Sagan (LIQ), Kruiswijk (RAB) and Paulinho (STB) are the three men who are at the front of the stage at the 36km mark. They have a lead of just five seconds.

13:17Schleck's group at 26"

The first peloton (including the yellow jersey, of course) is now 26" ahead of the group that includes Schleck, Kloden, Coppel...

13:17Three on the attack...

With 55" between the two pelotons, Sagan (LIQ) is one of three men who is attacking the front group on the descent.

13:15Kloden and Schleck in dropped group

There are two distinct pelotons and, in the second group, is Andreas Klöden (RNT). Also in the back group is Frank Schleck (RNT), Coppel (SAU) and Vanendert (LTB).

There are about 60 in the second peloton.

13:12Result of first climb

The points for the col du Portel were won by:

1. Voeckler (EUC) 5pts

2. Kessiakoff (AST) 3pts

3. Martinez (EUS) 2pts

4. Vande Velde (GRS) 1pt

13:10Cofidis leading the peloton

The bunch is all together with about 1km to climb and Cofidis is the team that's at the front of the peloton. Voeckler and Taaramae are now on the attack near the top of the col du Portel.

13:08Coppel's crisis was shortlived

Coppel (SAU) has rejoined the peloton after being dropped briefly. The seven escapees have been reeled in after only 1km at the front of the stage.

13:07Coppel also dropped

The rider in 14th overall is one of many riders who are losing contact with the peloton on the col du Portel.

13:07Seven in the lead

At the 28km mark, seven men have a small advantage on the peloton.

13:06Taaramae's move is over

The Estonian's escape has been nulified and he is back in the peloton which is around the 27km mark.

13:05Several in pursuit Taaramae

Bernaudeau (EUC) and Farrar (GRS) have also been dropped as the bunch ascends the first climb of the stage. Taaramae is still at the front of the stage and there are several men trying to bridge the gap to the Cofidis rider.

13:02Van Hummel dropped

The formation of the grupetto has begun. Kenny van Hummel (VCD) and Yauheni Hutarovich (FDJ) are already off the back of the peloton.

13:01Taaramae on the attack

As the bunch climbs the col du Portel, Rein Taaramae has gone on the attack. The Cofidis rider began his move at the 25km mark.

12:59Peloton about to climb the Col du Portel

The bunch is all together as it begins the ascent of the first climb in stage 14.

12:57Sagan back in peloton

The attack by Sagan et al amounted to nothing. The bunch is all together at the 22km mark.

12:56Sagan one of two riders in the lead

At the 21km mark, Sagan (LIQ) has the company of one rider from Vacansoleil at the front of the stage but this pair is being pursued by a number of counter-attacks.

12:54Sagan in a move of around 20 men...

The rider in the green jersey has, once again, put himself in an early escape group. He is part of a group that's about 20 strong but it's being marked closely by the Sky team.

12:53Only two departments in stage 14

The first climb of the 14th stage is in the Aude department. The col du Portel is ranked category-two and the top is at the 30km mark of today's 191km stage. It is 5.3km long and has an average gradient of 6.3 per cent.

The race crosses into the Ariège department at 55km and it's here that the peloton will tackle the Port de Lers and Mur de Peguere.

12:50Hansen: Lars, myself and Jurgen had to pull in the break

“It's great - three wins in a Grand Tour,” said Australia's Adam Hansen after the win by Greipel in stage 13. Lotto-Belisol has enjoyed plenty of success already thanks to their German sprinter but the team's GC rider is also still very well placed. “We still have Van den Broeck in fifth place on GC, we're very happy,” continued Hansen with his appraisal of the race after Bastille Day. “It was a difficult course today with the climb and we gave it everything. We tried to do two...

12:47Nothing being allowed to move...

At the 14km mark, the peloton is still all together. There have been a number of escape attempts but everything is being chased down...

12:44Albasini: We had to do something...

“It was a bit of a bad situation, because when the group went we started to pull for Matt and he started to feel not so good,” said one of the riders who tried his luck on the approach to Le Cap d'Agde yesterday. Michael Albasini (OGE) was on the attack with Alexandre Vinokourov (AST) but they were reeled in by the peloton with 2.5km to go. “There was too much work done already, so we had to do something. It was the only thing after that steep climb - I felt pretty good, but I wouldn't...

12:4311km raced...

It's still all together early in stage 14. At the 11km mark, none of the escape attempts have yielded any gain.

12:41Vansummeren in a crash

There has been a fall in the peloton that's involved two riders - including Vansummeren (GRS) - but both are back on their bikes and have quickly rejoined the peloton.

12:38RadioShack tries again...

Once again we see a number of men from RadioShack-Nissan try to break free of the peloton but, at the 7km mark, it's all together.

12:37Omega Pharma-Quickstep leads the peloton

So far 5.5km have been raced. The Omega Pharma-Quickstep team has riders at the head of the peloton. No early attacks have gained much ground... and the bunch is still all together.

12:35Paulinho caught

The attacking RadioShack rider has been reeled in by the peloton at the 4km mark.

12:34Prize classification review: part 04 ?? white jersey

Rein Taaramae (COF) is one of two riders to have led the youth classification in 2012. He is currently ranked third and, despite a good start to the race, he's suffering now and was 159th in stage 13. The Estonian is a massive 41'59” behind the other rider to wear the white jersey in the 99th Tour: Tejay van Garderen (BMC).
In second place in this category is Thibaut Pinot (FDJ) who is still within striking distance of the lead of the classification open to riders born after 1...

12:33Paulinho leading stage 14

There is one rider at the front early today: it's Sergio Paulinho (RNT) and he's been chased by a number of others who are just ahead of the peloton.

12:31Tailwind early today

The peloton is speeding along early in stage 14 as riders try to establish an escape group right from the get-go. A tailwind is assisting with the rapid pace early today.

12:30Racing: and an immediate attack from FDJ-BigMat

The official start time for the 14th stage is 12.19pm. As soon as the flag fell to signal the start of the race in Limoux there was an attack from a FDJ-BigMat rider.

12:2719 degrees for the start of stage 14

As the bunch makes its way to the site of the official start we can report that there are 163 riders still in the race with no one retiring overnight. The temperature at the start in Limoux is 19 degrees Celsius and there are only a few high clouds hovering over the site of the finish in Foix. The weather can change quickly in the Pyrenees but there's no rain in the forecast but it is going to be quite windy today.

12:27Prize classification review: part 03 ?? polka-dot jersey

There was one small change in the climbing classification yesterday and Cadel Evans earned one point on the Mont-Saint-Clair and moved up from 13th to 11th in the race for the polka-dot jersey.
Sweden's Frederik Kessiakoff (AST) continues to wear the spotted top, with a collection of 66 points, 11 more than Pierre Rolland (EUC). Chris Anker Sorensen (STB) is ranked third with 39 points.
The climbs in stage 14 are the category-two col du Portel (rising to 601m, with the top at the...

12:24Ready to roll...

The peloton is about to start the small journey through the neutral zone in Limoux.

12:24Prize classification review: part 02 ?? green jersey

For the second successive day there has been a significant reshuffle of the top order of the points classification. Goss (OGE) has slipped down from second to third after finishing stage 13 in 93rd place; he was 12'31” behind the winner of the stage André Greipel (LTB) who is now ranked second, behind Peter Sagan (LIQ).
With his second place in Le Cap d'Agde, Sagan collected 35 points and he's now got a total tally of 296 points, while Greipel has 232 and Goss 203.

12:23Prize classification review: part 01 ?? yellow jersey

There was no change to the top 10 overall after stage 13. In fact one of the only changes at the top end of the GC result sheet offers a hint of what might be coming on the first day of the 2012 Tour in the Pyrenees. Jelle Vanendert (LTB) was 25th overall after 12 stages and he finished third-last in the stage to Le Cap d'Agde. The Belgian won the stage to Plateau de Beille last year and perhaps he was saving himself for the climbs today. He slipped down the rankings to 29th after stage...

12:18Welcome to the live coverage of stage 14 of the 2012 Tour

The 191km 14th stage of the 99th Tour de France is due to begin at 12.20pm. There is a 2.6km neutral zone before the peloton reaches the site of the official start. Two riders who were at the start of the 2012 race in Liège have some big news from overnight: Fabian Cancellara (who left the Tour last week to be with his wife) has welcomed baby Elina to the world; and Jean-Christophe Peraud, who was second in stage 12, went to Aubenas by helicopter after yesterday's stage to be with his wife....


Jersey wearers after the stage 20

Classifications after the stage 20


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