During the ninth stage, Movistar regained the image of a group that is truly interested in the team standings. On 7 July, the day of the ‘running of the bulls' the armada from Pamplona, the staff wore the red scarf of San Fermin and the riders enacted an impressive series of attacks and seized every chance they could to disrupt the dominance of Chris Froome, the rider in the yellow jersey. The presence of Nairo Quintana, Alejandro Valverde and Rui Costa in the group of 19 who arrived in Bagneres-de-Bigorre to contest the sprint for third place – behind Dan Martin and Jakob Fuglsang – offered the coup of a victory on the day for the team classification. The scored too... beating Belkin Pro Cycling by five seconds in stage nine. Robert Gesink, Bauke Mollema and Laurens Ten Dam gave the Dutch team second place, just five seconds behind the Spanish squad.
In contrast, Sky Procycling is only the 16th best over 40 minutes behind!
In the overall rankings for teams, Movistar is also now in command at the end of the first third of the Tour de France, 4'11” ahead of Team Saxo-Tinkoff and 5'22” in front of Belkin.