Team Sky was built around Bradley Wiggins, who came on board after finishing fourth in the 2009 Tour, but in 2010 he suffered from bad form and in 2011 he fell and broke his collarbone in the stage from Le Mans to Châteauroux. It did not show the makings of a great Tour de France team in its first two participations, with its best overall performances being Thomas Löfkvist's 17th in 2010 and Rigoberto Urán's 24th in 2011.
Its maiden Tour in 2010 had seemed grounds for optimism, though, with Geraint Thomas finishing as runner-up in the cobblestone stage in the Nord —planting in his mind the seed of leadership ambitions in 2018— and rookie Edvald Boasson Hagen coming in third in the two following stages. This was some sort of prelude to the latter's two stage wins in 2011, which prevented Dave Brailsford from going home empty-handed a second time. However, the outcome totally changed in 2012: a one-two in the final general classification with Bradley Wiggins and Chris Froome, as well as three stage victories for Mark Cavendish, who in the end felt too hemmed-in in a team set up mainly to win the yellow jersey. Before being knighted by the Queen of England, the multi-medal holder in track events struck the gong to start the Olympic Games in London, wearing a highly symbolic yellow jersey, one week after his Tour de France victory.
The squad extended its dominance when Froome filled the leader's boots in 2013, winning more stage races than anyone else, but it was briefly interrupted in the 101st Tour de France, which started from Britain in no small part thanks to Team Sky's enormous effort to promote cycling in the country. The defending champion was forced to withdraw after falling in stages 4 and 5, with Richie Porte being unable to fill his boots despite reaching the Alps in second place overall. There was no plan B for the British team, but it resumed its victorious ways with Chris Froome's second triumph in 2015, which he followed up with a third in 2016 and a fourth in 2017. He has since won the Vuelta and Giro as well. Geraint Thomas, the team's back-up if something happens to Froome, won the 2018 Critérium du Dauphiné, while Colombian whiz Egan Bernal, the 21-year-old champion of the Tour of California, embodies the future of Sky. There are no doubts about it —Sky is the team to beat.
Overall wins: 5
Stage wins: 15
Secondary classification wins: 2
Yellow jerseys: 77
5: the number of times a British rider has won the Tour de France (all since 2012).
7 July 2011: Edvald Boasson Hagen grabs the first Tour de France win for Sky ProCycling (as the team was known back then) in Lisieux.
9 July 2012: A year and a day after fracturing his collarbone on the road from Le Mans to Châteauroux, Bradley Wiggins pulls on the yellow jersey, which he will keep until the end of Le Tour, at the end of the time trial from Arc-et-Senans to Besançon.
21 July 2013: Chris Froome becomes the second Briton and first rider from Africa (where he was born and raised) to win the Tour de France, adding symbolic weight to the 100th edition.
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