Tour de France - *Rodez - Revel


Live Comments

  1. - - Thanks for following our coverage of stage 13 of the Tour de France, and join us tomorrow for more coverage of stage 14.

  2. - - And Andy Schleck is still way ahead in the white jersey standings. Young riders' classification.

  3. - - There's no change in the mountains points classification, with Anthony Charteau still in the polkadot jersey. Mountains classification.

  4. - - Alessandro Petacchi is back in the green jersey after finishing third, with Thor Hushovd managing no better than 8th position. Mark Cavendish is now just 25 points behind the Italian, though there are only two final opportunities for him to close that gap - in Bordeaux and on the Champs-Elysees. Points classification.

  5. - - There is no change in the top ten of the GC after the stage, and Andy Schleck remains in the yellow jersey, 31 seconds ahead of Alberto Contador heading into the crucial Pyrenean stages.

  6. 0km - Lance Armstrong is just coming in now, in no hurry, 4'35" down on the leaders. The GC is of no importance to him any more, but you can't help but feel he'll be gunning for a stage win in the Pyrenees.

  7. 0km - Vino takes the stage win! A superb attack! Geraint Thomas starts the lead-out behind, Cavendish is giong to contest it for the points...and Cavendish gets second! I think Petacchi was jut about third!

  8. 0.5km - He's coming down the final straight, and the Kazakh is going to get his stage win!

  9. 1km - Vino goes under the 1km barrier - I'm pretty sure he's got enough time on the pack!

  10. 2km - Voeckler is caught. Vino is out front on his own now, and will be an extremely difficult man to reel back in. The HTC-Columbia team are absent from the front of the peloton, replaced by the Milram train.

  11. 3km - It's 14 seconds back from Vino to the yellow jersey group. We haven't seen any pictures of Cav or Petacchi for a while - so I can't give any updates on them.

  12. 5km - One of the Milram riders jumps off the front too - it looks like Linus Gerdemann.

  13. 6.3km - Thomas Voeckler goes off the front now as all the attackers except for Vino are reeled in! Vino came so close to a stage win yesterday,only to be reeled in by team-mate Contador and Joaquim Rodriguez yesterday. Can he make up for it today?

  14. 7.4km - Cunego, Roche and Barredo sit up and wait for Vino and Luis Leon Sanchez. Ballan is still out in front over the top of the climb, and Vino has left the rest and bridged the gap to Ballan now!

  15. 8km - Ballan is in the mood! His teeth are gritted, and he's persevering, though not gaining any massive ground on the peloton on the Saint-Ferreol, which they're on now! Now another attack, this time from Vino and Luis Leon Sanchez - two very strong riders!!

  16. 8.5km - Alessandro Ballan attacks!!! Roche, Cunego, Barredo and a few others are after him!

  17. 9km - Maxime Monfort ives it his all at the front now after an all-out dig on the front! The Columbia team are keen to prevent any attacks before the Sain-Ferreol!

  18. 10km - OUCH! Jesus Hernandez takes a tumble at the back of the peloton! That must have hurt, though no serious injuries and he looks okay to resume. He won't catch the peloton again though - they're going full guns now. is the latest split with 10km to go. Lance Armstrong is also right at the back of the peloton. Our leaders have now been caught!

  19. 15km - David Warren has it! George Hincapie from a break on stage 15 on the Pla d'Adet! Now it all comes back to me. Well done, sir. Meanwhile, the gap is down to 25 seconds, and the escapees will soon hove into the view of the peloton. Contador's Astana squad are fighting for their position at the head of the pack too.

  20. 20km - Ah! I stand corrected - he was only the second of Armstrong's team-mates to achieve that feat. Mails to for the other one. I'm racking my brains but it's eluding me.

  21. 25km - This is the eighth time that the town of Revel is hosting a stage finish of the Tour. In the past the likes of Rudi Altig. Joaquim Agostinho and Eddy Merckx have won here, while some willno doubt remember Charly Mottet's superb solo victory here back in 1990. The last winner here in 2005 was Paolo Savoldelli - who if memory serves correctly was the only member of Lance Armstrong's Postal/Discovery Channel teams to win a stage other than the Texan himself.

  22. 30km - One would think Cavendish is feeling strong given that he has now sent his entire team to the front of the peloton. With all the work his team have done, there's a good deal of pressure on the Manxman's shoulders not to get left behind when the pace inevitably goes up on the Saint-Ferreol. 35 seconds now the gap.

  23. 35km - Juan Antonio Flecha took the six points at the intermediate sprint ahead of Pierrick Fedrigo (4 pts) and Sylvain Chavanel (2 pts), though their lead is now down to just 58 seconds.

  24. 40km - Troy K says: "I think it will be a sprinters stage in the end. I'm going with Thor Hushovd today. Stuck at work so watching the tour on Eurosport-Yahoo!" Of all the sprinters, Hushovd is certainly one of those who gets over the hills best, along with Oscar Freire, though neither of them look to have the final speed on the flat sprints to challenge for stage wins against the likes of Petacchi and Cavendish.

  25. 45km - Luke Roberts takes over at the front of the peloton for Milram. Maybe they think Ciolek could make it over the final climb and that Cav and Petacchi will struggle. The gap is now down to below the 2'00" mark.

  26. 50km - The HTC-Columbia and Lampre teams are clearly backing Cav and Petacchi to make it over the Côte de Saint-Ferréol in the lead group. Looking at the stage profile, the Poggio at Milan-Sanremo seems to serve as a useful barometer for whether they will indeed be able to do so. The Saint-Ferréol is 1.9 km @ 6 %, while the Poggio is 4km at 3.7% - in other words longer but not as steep.

  27. 55km - Anyone predicting this breakaway might stay clear may note that the gap has been brought right down to just 2'10" now as they make their way down a slight incline to the intermediate sprint at Caraman.

  28. 60km - Bradley Riesch, via e-mail, has picked out Vino as a possible stage winner. "He's aggressive, and may be motivated out of annoyance [at yesterday's defeat]. He should be very good for a 3rd cat climb, where the overall contenders have little to gain, and the sprinters are just too damned slow to get over in the lead. If he's got anything left after yesterday, he may make it from the top to the finish alone." Keep the mails coming in to

  29. 65km - The average speed for the third hour of the stage is 42.5km/h, bringing the overall stage average to 43.4km/h.

  30. 70km - Chavanel took the three points at the top of the Cote de Puylaurens ahead of Fedrigo (2 points) and Flecha (1 point). Meanwhile, Christophe Kern of Cofidis is struggling. He is dwindling off the back of the peloton, as they go up that 4th cat climb, though will probablly regain contact on the descent. Nevertheless, it's a bad sign with the Pyrenees looming over the next couple of days.

  31. 75km - Right, time for your predictions. The gap is now down to below the 4-minute mark, and it's looking like this break will probably be caught. Who's your money on for the stage win? Can the lead trio somehow survive? Will the peloton be caught out? Or will it be one for the sprinters, and if so, who will win it? Mails to

  32. 80km - With not a huge amount of action currently happening in this stage right at this very moment, why not have a look at this interview with Andy Schleck, who suggested that Contador's performance yesterday in the final climb into Mende suggested the defending champion was nervous. It's worth a click, and is right here.

  33. 85km - Ah, the Milram team have shown their faces! For a well-backed outfit, they have been totally anonymous at this race, and indeed in last year's edition too. They have come to the front to work with HTC-Columbia and Lampre, and the gap continues to come down very gradually. Just 4'20" now.

  34. 90km - I must admit I was more than a little tickled by the latest edition of Blazin' Saddles, and heartily recommend you read it. To do so, click this link right here.

  35. 95km - Here's a great stat from ASO for all you power-meter worshippers: At the front of the peloton, HTC-Columbia's Bert Grabsch is putting out between 400 and 500 watts of power. His team-mate Bernhard Eisel is further back out of the wind, and is needing to put out only between 200 and 300 watts. I should probably add that brabsch is a bigger rider, so will naturally need to put out a little more power anyway, but that gives an idea as to how much wind resistance counts at 42km/h.

  36. 100km - Thor Hushovd has a problem with his rear wheel and drops backto his team car for a mechanic to have a lookat it. The Norwegian won back his green jersey by making it into the day's break and taking points at the intermediate sprints, thoughhis jersey could come under threat if the HTC-Columbia and Lampre teams do indeed bring this breakabck in. Points classification.

  37. 105km - The peloton are keeping the trio's lead at 4'45" as they approach the feeding zone at Lambers. It is looking more and more like we will see a bunch sprint finish.

  38. 110km - For live audio coverage of today's stage, please click this link.

  39. 115km - Juan Antonio Flecha: Though naturally a classics specialist, Flecha has become a regular in breakaways at the Tour. He has one Tour stage win to his name, which came back in 2003, though the big win missing from his palmares is Paris-Roubaix. He has been agonisingly close on a number of occasions, with five top-six finishes in the last six years. He took a significant win for the new Sky team in Omloop Het Nieuwsblad earlier this year, though that remains his only victory so far this season.

  40. 120km - Pierrick Fedrigo: The other Frenchman in this break is the owner of possibly the best nickname in cycling: "le nez de Marmande". He is a former French national champion, and his palmares includes wins in the Tour du Limousin (twice) and the Four Days of Dunkirk. These past two seasons have been his best, and have seen him win a stage of the Dauphine, a stage of the Tour de France (in Tarbes last year) and the Criterium International this year over a field containing both Armstrong and Contador.

  41. 125km - Sylvain Chavanel: It's only right that our closer look at the lead trio should start with Chavanel, who's in the form of his life. The 31-year-old Frenchman has blossomed since joining Quickstep from Cofidis before the start of last season, and has already won two stages (2 and 7) of this year's Tour, to go along with his other stage win in 2008 in Montluçon. He's a former French national TT champion, a winner of the Four Days of Dunkirk (twice), the Tour of Belgium and the Tour du Haut Var.

  42. 130km - It's a pretty overcast day here in the South of France. Ideal conditions for racing - with hardly any wind, and temperatures in the low to mid-20s. Full weather details.

  43. 135km - Sylvain Chavanel is the best-placed of these three out front on the GC. He lies 38th overall, 26'03" behind Andy Schleck. Next is Juan Antonio Flecha, who is 71st at 58'58", and finally Pierrick Fedrigo is 76th at 1:03'05". HTC-Columbia and Lampre have now brought their lead back down to just under the 5-minute mark.

  44. 140km - The average speed in the first hour's racing was a very respectable 45.2km/h. Not quite the hell-for-leather start that we saw yesterday, but they certainly haven't been taking it easy either. Incidentally, Fedrigo took the six points at the intermediate sprint at Saint-Jean-Delnous, Flecha took four and Chavanel two.

  45. 145km - You can watch the race now LIVE on British Eurosport (Sky 410 & 412 / Virgin 521) and on the Eurosport Player here.

  46. 150km - One man who won't be contesting any sprints today is Garmin's Tyler Farrar. The American broke his wrist in a crash sustained back on stage 2, and finally abaondoned yesterday. For the full story, click here.

  47. 155km - Hmmm...bad news for our leaders. HTC-Columbia and Lampre have moved to the front of the peloton and have upped the pace a bit.

  48. 160km - Pierrick Fédrigo takes the three points at the top of the Côte de Begon, followed by Chavanel (2 pts) and Flecha (1 pt). They have now stretched their lead out to beyond the six minute mark, and over the course of the next 20-30 kilometres we should learn whether or not the sprinters' teams are interested in reeling them back in for a bunch sprint, or whether they're content to rest their legs ahead of the Pyrenees.

  49. 165km - Cofidis' Estonian rider Rein Taaramae has jsut abandoned his first Tour de France. He was lying in 138th place, 1h39'30" behind Andy Schleck on the GC. Full GC standings.

  50. 170km - None of these three have any aspirations towards the King of the Mountains jersey, but here's how the points were shared out at the top of the Côte de Mergals, for what it's worth: 1. Chavanel (Quick Step) 3 pts, 2. Fedrigo (Bbox) 2 pts, 3. Flecha (Sky) 1 pt. More significantly, they have now stretched their lead over the peloton out to 5'00".

  51. 175km - Chavanel, Fedrigo and Flecha are now at the start of our first climb of the day, the côte de Mergals (3.7km @ 3.8% ) a category 4 climb.

  52. 180km - Chavanel, Fedrigo and Flecha have used the ascent by Luc-la-Primaube in order to stretch their lead out, and they now have a 1'20" advantage over the peloton. A counter-attack group led by Katusha's Pavel Brutt did attempt to bridge the gap out to the lead trio, but they were reeled back in by the pack.

  53. 185km - Taking a look beck at yesterday's action, Joaquim Rodriguez took his first Tour de France stage win, beating Alberto Contador in a two-man sprint in Mende, though Contador did manage to take ten seconds out of Andy Schleck's lead in the GC. For highlights of yesterday's rather dramatic stage, click here.

  54. 190km - We have an early three-man break. Pierrick Fédrigo (Bbox Bouygues), Sylvain Chavanel (Quick Step) and Juan Antonio Flecha (Sky) have jumped off the front of the peloton. Saxo Bank and the sprinters' teams might be fairly content to let this one go. All three men are breakaway specialists, former stage winners, and high quality riders, though none pose a threat on the GC and there are only three of them, so theoretically at least should be easier to keep under control.

  55. 195km - Here is a quick look at the climbs on the agenda today: first up is the Côte de Mergals (3.7 km @ 3.8 % - 4th Cat.), then the Côte de Bégon - (3.1 km @ 4.5 % - 4th Cat.), followed by the Côte d'Ambialet (5.2 km @ 4.6% - 3rd Cat.), then the Côte de Puylaurens (4.3 km @ 3.9 % - 4th Cat.), and finally, just 8 kilometres from the stage finish, the Côte de Saint-Ferréol (1.9 km @ 6% - 3rd Cat.).

  56. 196km - The race commissar drops his flag, and we're underway in stage 13! Lance Armstrong has already had a bad start to the stage before it has even begun. He came down in the neutral zone, and had to receive attention from the Radioshack team car before being able to proceed.

  57. 11:45 - Today's 196-kilometre parcours has the experts divided. Will this stage be one for a breakaway, or can the sprinters get themselves over the category 3 and 4 climbs to keep themselves in the hunt for victory?

  58. 11:45 - Welcome to's live text coverage of stage 13 of the Tour de France from Rodez to Revel.