Froome gets wind

Well, well. Who saw that coming? Mother Nature has wreaked havoc on the peloton in Stage 13, with brutal cross-winds snaffling back nearly a third of Chris Froome’s GC lead and destroying Valverde’s ambitions – on a flat stage.

Movistar were poor. Sky were fragile. Saxo were brilliant. Belkin were efficient. Omega Pharma were strong. And Sagan was once again not quite fast enough in the final sprint to get the stage win.

Ventoux on Sunday is shaping as a bona fide ball-tearer. Should Sky disintegrate on the ascent of its searching lunar landscape – quite possible based on current form – any of about four riders could be challenging for yellow. Most ominously for Mr Brailsford’s boys, Senor Contador and Saxo-Tinkoff are on the move…

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