Tour de France favourite Chris Froome is dominating the Dauphine. He won the first two stages without major problems. But, as of today, it has not been that easy. He is still the overall leader, but he can thank Team Sky and his competition for that. His teammates have helped to secure his standing from rival Alberto Contador. In fact, it seems that during the fourth stage, Team Sky was looking to give up the yellow jersey just to save stamina in the upcoming trials.
“I’m really happy. We were relaxed coming into the stage and it wouldn’t have been the end of the world if La Mondiale had taken the jersey from the break with Maxime Bouet in it, but in the end the race was so fast that we were able to keep it.”
Confidence is definitely running high at Team Sky. And they would need it, because nothing would prepare them for what happened during the next two stages. In the fifth stage, Alberto Contador put immense pressure on Froome and his mates to perform at their peak. During a breakaway that took 85km to achieve, Contador made his move but his attempt seemed futile due to the strength of Team Sky. Va Va Froome has four buddies to help quell Contador’s attack.
The sixth stage showed Froome’s ability to adapt to a treacherous situation. During this fateful stage, he crashed on a left-hand turn. The Tour de France champion was bloodied but not broken. But, sportsmanship prevailed. The surrounding teams slowed down to allow Froome to regain his time. It was a gesture that Froome will not soon forget.
“…more than anything I just want to thank the other riders for neutralising the race. That is really big of them – good sportsmanship.”
If this continues, it will be fate and friendship that will award Chris Froome Dauphine glory.
Photo credit: Damien