Rouleur Classic

Tour de France 2016: Top Banana stage 17

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Photo: Jim Fryer / BrakeThrough Media |

The stage to Emosson had to be where we started to see some concerted attacks on Froome’s domination of the yellow jersey. Had Quintana been bluffing all along and would he show his strength? Did the bookies underestimate Bauke Mollema? Could Adam Yates make it a British battle for top place?

Ultimately, it was Richie Porte who made the first attack that seemed to make Froome genuinely work, and finally see his Lancelot, Wout Poels, fall. The Aussie has faced criticism for being too friendly with his former team-mate but no one could argue he wasn’t racing for himself during stage 17.

Admittedly he couldn’t get rid of Froome, but at least in trying he put the rest of GC contenders to shame – and to the sword.

Porte has been gradually moving back up the general classification since a disastrous puncture on stage two and he still looks to have enough fightand energy to get up to a podium spot. It’s great to see a domestique move up to a leadership role and Porte is proving he is worth it.

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