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Live Reporting

Steve Sutcliffe

All times stated are UK

  1. Post update

    Benoit Cosnefroy crests the first climb and is the virtual King of the Mountains leader on the road as a result.

    Meanwhile further down the Col de la Colmiane, Giacomo Nizzolo and Caleb Ewan are feeling it.

    They’re just not built for this.

  2. Post update

    Hello what’s this…

    Benoit Cosnefroy is out of the saddle and attacking with one kilometre of this first climb to go.

    It’s a bold move presumably designed to take the points at the top of the climb and whittle down the breakaway group.

  3. Post update

    Quick shot of the back of the peloton seems to show Tiesj Benoot in a lot of trouble along with Niccolo Bonifazio.

    While I’d expect to see the Italian sprinter suffering the same can’t be said of Sunweb’s Belgian rider who is a strong Classics performer.

    Still around three kilometres til we hit the top of this category one climb.

  4. Post update

    The breakaway group’s advantage has dropped down to two minutes and eight seconds.

    It’s been leg-sapping stuff although we appear to have just hit a ‘flatter’ section of the course through La Bolline.

  5. Post update

    Stage two

    Copyright: Getty Images

    Once this summit is out of the way the peloton will drop down to La Bollene-Vesubie to tackle the impressive Col de Turini, which acted as the final climb on the penultimate stage of Paris-Nice in 2019.

    The Turini Pass is 14.9 kilometres long and slopes at 7.3%.

    It’s a narrow and has a series of hairpins just to make things interesting with the top at an altitude of 1,609 metres.

    In other words, more pain to follow.

  6. Post update

    The mountain passes look tight and I’ve not seen any fans up on this part of the route which is just as well to be honest looking at this…

  7. Post update

    The water bottles are out, a number of riders have their jersey zips down.

    And laughter has been replaced by concentration.

    This looks like it is starting to hurt and there’s still another 13km of the ascent to go. I’m getting heavy legs just watching.

  8. Post update

    Here we go. The leading group and now the main peloton are out of their saddles for a moment as they adjust to the 16.3-kilometre drag to reach the top of the Col de la Colmiane.

    The average gradient is 6.3% on this climb.

  9. Post update

    Col de la Colmiane

    Copyright: ASO

    The peloton have been coasting along until now.

    I suspect the smiles may well turn to grimaces very shortly. Look at what’s on its way.

    Some big gears needed for this.

  10. Post update

    UAE-Team Emirates very much controlling things at the front of the peloton at the moment.

    There’s no real urgency back there so a nice chance for the TV pictures to cut to the picturesque but rocky village of Bairols which is located at an altitude of 830 metres.

  11. Brave or stupid?

    I don’t know what everyone else thinks, but I loved what
    appeared to be Astana’s attempt to steal some time for the GC during torrential
    rain yesterday. After two of the patriarchs of the peloton, Ineos’ Luke Rowe
    and Jumbo-Visma’s Tony Martin, tried to slow the whole field down, Omar Fraile
    and one of the Izagirre brothers took lead lad Miguel Angel Lopez on a
    pre-emptive strike ahead on a descent.

    Now, I don’t want anyone to get hurt, and clearly there were
    accidents occurring in the wet yesterday. But I’m morally torn by the fact that
    it was a brave move by a team who will have to think outside the box if they want
    to win this race.

    Funny, as well, how it was the two favourite teams who were
    trying to control things having lost a couple of riders themselves.

    You could argue spreading the field out like that makes
    things a little safer anyway, given most of yesterday’s crashes happened as
    wheels tangled within the peloton.

    Poor old Lopez’s speedway-style slide into a road sign might
    well have proved the point for us all, but it’s heroic or daft (depending on
    the outcome) moments like that which make this brutal sport so great.

    Astana crash

    Copyright: Getty Images

  12. Post update

    Peter Sagan and his seven-man gang have eked out a three-minute advantage at the front of the race as they head towards the first big climb of the day up the Col de la Colmiane.

  13. ‘I am really motivated’ – Alaphilippe

    I mentioned how I’m expecting/hoping to see Julian Alaphilippe light up the stage a little earlier.

    And judging by his comments on the start line he may just fancy it.

    “It will be completely different to yesterday. I am really motivated
    because I like this type of stage,” said the Deceuninck-QuickStep rider.

    “I feel better and better. I am not on the top of my shape but
    I am much better than the last few weeks.”

  14. Walking wounded

    Pinot

    Copyright: Getty Images

    Groupama-FDJ leader Thibaut Pinot trailed in by some distance on Saturday but was given the same time as the winner Alexander Kristoff, as the the massive pile up he was in took place within three kilometres of the finish line on the Promenade des Anglais.

    “For the moment he’s fine, but you always need to wait a few days to see if there’s been consequences or not,” said the team’s sports director Philippe Mauduit.

    Meanwhile Wout Poels is reportedly riding with broken rib and injured lung on stage two of the Tour de France.

    Bahrain McLaren would not want to lose another key member of their team after Rafael Valls was forced to abandon on Saturday.

  15. Post update

    The eight-man breakaway containing Sagan and Trentin put around 90 seconds into the main group before Trentin stopped for a wheel change.

    That pair were going along nicely with Anthony Perez (Cofidis), Lukas Postlberger (Bora-Hansgrohe), Kasper Asgreen(Deceuninck-Quick Step), Benoit Cosnefroy (AG2R-La Mondiale), Toms Skujins (Trek-Segafredo) and Michael Gogl (NTT), for company.

  16. Trentin takes intermediate sprint

    The first intermediate sprint is approaching and it’s taken by CCC rider Matteo Trentin.

    The Italian holds off Peter Sagan who is once again wearing the green jersey that he was won a record seven times.

    It’s the 121st stage contested by Sagan in green.

  17. Post update

    Julian Alaphilippe

    Copyright: Getty Images

    Be interesting to see how Julian Alaphilippe fares today.

    It seems a good opportunity for the Deceuninck-QuickStep rider who says he is just chasing stage victories this time around.

    Alaphilippe led the 2019 edition of the Tour for 14 stages before finishing fifth overall, so I dare not discount him as a GC contender just yet.

    However, he didn’t have a trouble-free Saturday so I guess it’s a case of just waiting to see what shape/mood he’s in once this progresses.

  18. Post update

    Stage one had an average audience of 3.18m viewers in France on Saturday.

    That figure, which peaked to 4.37 million (35.7% of the market share in France) at the time of the race finish is the highest for an opening stage since the Grand Depart in Corsica in 2013.

  19. Post update

    Crikey David Gaudu looks in trouble.

    He’s one Thibaut Pinot’s chief lieutenant’s in the Groupama-FDJ squad.

    Apparently he has a back injury. He’s already 20 seconds down on the main bunch.

    It’s not looking good for the French rider.

  20. Post update

    Today’s intermediate sprint was scheduled to arrives, after 16km of racing at Lac du Broc.

    At this rate we’ll be there soon.

    Ah here we go. The flag has dropped and half a dozen riders have tried to get away before we get anywhere near the first climb.