There's no more doubt about who is the strongest rider in the 2014 Tour de France. After stage 2 in Sheffield and stage 10 at La Planche des belles filles, Vincenzo Nibali increased his lead by winning in the Alps. He arrived solo in Chamrousse to claim his third stage win on a day of suffering for Richie Porte, replaced in second place overall by Alejandro Valverde and on the podium by Romain Bardet.
News from the sick bay…
The race medical communiqué explained the withdrawal of Spain's Daniel Navarro, the leader of team Cofidis, by digestion problems (nausea, vomiting).
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The stage in pictures
Tour de France 2014 - Etape 13 - Saint Etienne / Chamrousse - Dure journée pour Romain BARDET : le match pour le maillot blanc s'intensifie avec le rapporchement de Thibaut PINOT © ASO/B.Bade
A sporting view
In spring time, the capital of Forez is a frequent host to Paris-Nice, a race that has stopped there 58 times. Generally featured in the first part of the “race to the sun”, Saint-Etienne has often witnessed bunched sprint finishes on the Cours Fauriel, won by several Tour Green Jersey winners including Rik Van Looy, Rudy Altig, Eddy Merckx, Franco Bitossi, Freddy Maertens, Sean Kelly or Eddy Planckaert. Recently in 2008 Kjell Carlström became the first stage winner from Finland, while Sylvain Chavanel captured his first leader's jersey there.
Population : 180,000 inhabitants (Stéphanois), 400,000 inhabitants in the 45 communes of the agglomeration community of Saint-Étienne Métropole
Economy : Global headquarters of Casino, largest private company in the Rhône – Alpes region
Culture : Comédie de Saint-Étienne (National dramatic centre, founded by Jean Dasté in 1947), Museum of the Mine, Museum of Art and Industry (weapons, cycles et ribbon collection). Festivals: Piano Passion, New Century, Massenet International Biennial, Celtic Rocks (music and dance)
Sport : athletics (club Coquelicot 42), tir à la sarbacane (blowpipe) (regional discipline with about 350 enthusiasts), water sports at Saint-Victor-sur-Loire (sailing school, marina, boat cruises), hiking, mountain biking, skiing and via ferrata (climbing route) in the Regional Nature Park of Pilat. Events: SaintéLyon (foot race largely at night between the two towns), BMX Indoor international
Specialities : apples and blueberries from Pilat, ribbonry and medical textiles
Sustainable Development : the oldest tramway in France, created in 1881
Labels : City of Art and History for its industrial heritage from the XIX and XX centuries, UNESCO City of design, Child Friendly Town
While the resort has already welcomed the Tour for the finish of a time-trial in 2001, it is also often visited by the skiing champions from the Grenoble area. Marion Josserand, bronze medallist at the 2010 Vancouver Olympics in Skicross often trains in Chamrousse. Situated in the Vizille Canton, the common reminds us of a former Tour Polka Dot Jersey winner, Thierry Claveyrolat, also known as the “Vizille Eagle”.
Commune of Isère (38). Mountain resort
Population : 460 inhabitants (Chamroussiens), 97,500 inhabitants in the 47 communes of the Grésivaudan Community of Communes
Altitude : 1,400 metres – 2,250 metres, 360° panorama with a view over Vercors, Chartreuse, Oisans and gateway to the Belledonne Massif
Economy : international tourism in winter and summer (50 businesses: restaurants, sports shops, services) 12,000 beds (3 hotels, 5 tourist residences, bed and breakfasts)
Culture : site of the Grenoble Olympic Games in 1968. Events : Festival Chamrousse en Piste, the first and only mountain street festival (5th edition, 2-4 August), oldest lumberjack competition (61st edition, 9-10 August)
Sport : in winter, 350 hectares for alpine skiing, 17 ski lifts, huge space for new snow, 40 km of pistes, snowshoeing, ice diving, snowmobiling, dog sledding. In
summer, hiking, mountain biking, climbing, ropes course, paragliding. Event : Chamrousse hill climb, stage in the French mountain car championships
Sustainable Development : several protected natural zones (Biotope and Natura 2000)
Jersey wearers after the stage 9
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Will the three stages in the Vosges determine the overall winner?
- Yes, they’ll confirm Nibali’s domination9.61%
- No, the real fight will happen in the Alps47.68%
- No, Contador will win the Tour in the Pyrenees30.74%
- No, Porte will beat them all in the time trial11.97%