Published: Wed, July 11, 2018
Sports | By Juana Wells

Olympic champion takes Tour de France yellow jersey in team time trial

Olympic champion takes Tour de France yellow jersey in team time trial

The overall leader after second stage, Peter Sagan, was dropped by his Bora-Hansgrohe teammates and fell to 80th overall and lost the yellow jersey.

Richard Moore, Lionel Birnie and François Thomazeau discuss the stage and Peter Sagan's first Tour stage win since his disqualification from last year's race. "It was climbing a little bit in a headwind and already the last five kilometers were up and down".

Sagan won the mostly flat 113.4-mile leg from Mouilleron-Saint-Germain to the department capital of La Roche-sur-Yon in just over four hours. And the second stage looked like it would feature another duel between the veteran Sagan and new star Gaviria.

Stage victor Slovakia's Peter Sagan, wearing the overall leader's yellow jersey, celebrates on the podium after the second stage of the Tour de France. "To win the stage with a team like we have here, and especially with the passing of Andy Rihs, is special", Porte said.

The world champion held off a strong challenge from Italian Sonny Colbrelli to clinch the stage and take the yellow jersey from Fernando Gaviria, who was one of the late crash victims.

Froome is 1:07 behind Sagan's leading time as he pursues a fifth Tour title.

"There was way too much wind for me", said the slightly-built Porte.

Among the big losers today were Nairo Quintana, whose Movistar team came home 53 seconds down on BMC Racing, Bahrain-Merida with 2014 Tour de France victor Vincenzo Nibali, 1 minute and 6 seconds down, and Romain Bardet's AG2R-La Mondiale, who came home 1 minute 15 seconds behind the day's victor.

Team time trials test the both the strength and emotional harmony of a team, with the rules structured to prevent the strongest riders making a solo charge and forcing each squad to make hard decisions over whether to leave team-mates behind, and there were indications of splits and frustrations in several groups.

Patrick Bevin is a stage victor at the Tour de France.

Ethiopia's Tsgabu Grmay became the first rider to abandon the race.

But Bardet will have been less happy to see his AG2R team lose more than a minute, while Bahrain-Merida struggled after a decent start and in the end the fact that Nibali lost a similar amount of time represented a decent exercise in damage limitation.

Three of the early starters were the big winners on stage three of the 2018 Tour de France, as BMC Racing won the stage - and the yellow jersey - and Richie Porte, Chris Froome (Team Sky) and Adam Yates (Mitchelton-Scott) gained back time lost to their rivals on stages one and two.

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