Tuesday, 14 August, 2018

BMC takes team time trial, Froome back in contention

Richie Porte ahead of the 2018 Tour de France Richie Porte ahead of the 2018 Tour de France
Shannon Reynolds | 11 July, 2018, 01:32

Jul 09 2018 05:39 pm CET BMC Racing Team has won the third stage's team time trial at the Tour de France.

And they lost just one more second in the finale, leaving Phillipe Gilbert just 4 seconds short of yellow but BMC - and Van Avermaet - with a stage win and the race lead to show after an excellent performance.

He will have an opportunity to make up for it in Monday's team time trial in Cholet, although he was expected to gain ground on his rivals in the collective effort against the clock, not just cancel out lost time.

Porte may be linked with a switch to the American Trek-Segafredo team next year, but the future of other riders and team staff is uncertain; and in the biggest race of the year, Monday's victory was the medicine they all collectively needed to reaffirm their overriding goal of reaching the finish as the team of the 2018 Tour victor.

Team Sky's Geraint Thomas missed out on the yellow jersey by just three seconds, having started the day sixth in the general classification and one second up on Van Avermaet.

World champion Peter Sagan said he had three reasons to be cheerful as he won stage two and took the overall leader's yellow jersey in front of family and friends from Slovakia at the Tour de France on Sunday.

"Obviously the [Tour] didn't start too well with the crash on stage one but that's bike racing".

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BMC's Belgian rider Greg Van Avermaet will take possession of the yellow jersey from world champion Peter Sagan. It would have been nice not to have lost it in the first place.

Vincenzo Nibali's Bahrain-Merida squad were 11th on the day, giving up 62 seconds to Team Sky, while Romain Bardet's AG2R La Mondiale team finished 12th, 71 seconds back. Through the jury's decision, in the final version as many as 116 riders had the same time as the leg victor, Peter Sagan (4:06:37 hour) i.e.all those who were in the peloton at the time of the crash.

"I feel maybe even better (than last year)".

The Tour remains in western France for Stage 3 on Monday with its first team time trial since 2015. "It's a long way to go, we still have six more hectic days and then we have also got the Alps and the Pyrenees".

Two-time runner-up Nairo Quintana is 1:31 back after he lost time following the puncture of both his tires near the end of Stage 1.

Tomorrow the Tour de France 204-kilometre sprint stage with the only mountain of the fourth category, which the participants of the race will overcome 60 kilometers from the finish.

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