Belfast Telegraph

Tour de France: Froome dodges a parasol to retain his Tour advantage

 

By Ian Parker

Chris Froome enjoyed a "relaxing" first day in the yellow jersey as Marcel Kittel won stage six of the Tour de France into Troyes, but the Team Sky train was almost derailed by a blow-away parasol.

The peloton rode at a steady pace in baking hot temperatures on the 216km route from Vesoul, allowing Froome - the three-time winner - to take it easy a day after he took the race lead from team-mate Geraint Thomas.

But there was one moment of panic 90km from the finish line when a spectator's parasol blew onto the road and rolled through the pack, striking a couple of riders without felling anyone.

"It did just pop up from nowhere," Froome said. "There was a gust of wind and it blew from one of the spectators and landed right in the middle of the road.

"It's quite scary when that happens. One minute you're cruising, and the next there's a massive parasol and everyone is dodging it. Thankfully no one came down.

"That's the nature of the Tour. Things change and you have to be ready for anything.

"These stages don't come along often. This was one of the most relaxed days I've done on the Tour."

Froome leads the Tour by 12 seconds from Thomas, with Astana's Italian national champion Fabio Aru in third, 14 seconds off yellow.

Belfast Telegraph

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