01:01 PM BST
167.5km to go
As expected, a fairly lively start to the stage. Mads Pedersen (Lidl-Trek) has attacked off the front of the peloton, taking with him a trio of riders. Ineos Grenadiers have looked interested in getting involved in some moves, but as yet nothing has stuck.
12:54 PM BST
173km to go
That breakaway group appeared to go off up the road unchallenged, with a number of team fanning out across the narrow road to block any further riders chipping off. A few minutes later, though, Wout van Aert (Jumbo-Visma), Lidl-Trek and Mathieu van der Poel attempted to push on. As it stands, though, they have failed to close the gap.
12:43 PM BST
And they’re off . . .
Christian Prudhomme, Tour de France race director, dropped his flag, and with no hesitation Victor Campenaerts (Lotto-Dstny) clipped off the front with a small group following the Belgian. Jonas Abrahamsen (Uno-X Pro), Clément Berthet (Ag2r-Citroën), Guillaume Boivin (Israel-Premier Tech), Mathieu Burgaudeau (TotalEnergies), David de la Cruz (Astana Qazaqstan), Jonas Gregaard (Uno-X Pro), Gorka Izagirre (Movistar), Matteo Jorgenson (Movistar), Pierre Latour (TotalEnergies), Alexey Lutsenko (Astana Qazaqstan), Matej Mohoric (Bahrain Victorious), Neilson Powless (EF Education-EasyPost) and Michael Woods (Israel-Premier Tech) all soon bridge over to the former hour record holder.
12:36 PM BST
Emotional pre-race moment for Van der Poel
Mathieu van der Poel (Alpecin-Deceuninck) was greeted at sign-on a short while ago with an emotional tribute to his late grandfather Raymond Poulidor who was born in the start town of Saint-Léonard-de-Noblat. As mentioned earlier, Poulidor remains a rider synonymous with the Puy de Dôme.
12:15 PM BST
Looks like we’re shy one horse . . .
Just heard from Lidl-Trek who have announced that Quinn Simmons, the US national road champion, will not start today’s stage.
In a short statement, Lidl-Trek said: “Unfortunately we have to report that Quinn Simmons will not take the start today. Since his heavy crash on stage five Quinn’s condition has not improved as we had hoped. He still feels stiffness and fatigue so we have decided to stop him to focus on his recovery.”
12:05 PM BST
Stage nine preview
Hello and welcome to our live rolling coverage from stage nine at the Tour de France, the 182.4 kilometre run from Saint-Léonard-de-Noblat to Puy de Dôme. With four categorised climbs in the final stage before Monday’s rest day – the Côte de Felletin, Côte de Pontcharraud and Côte de Pontaumur, before concluding atop the hors catégorie Puy de Dôme – the focus is expected to switch to the climbers.
The intermediate sprint at Lac de Vassivière comes very early in the stage, after just 30.4km, so I imagine there will be an early fight to get into a breakaway from those hoping to add to their accounts in the points classification, a competition currently dominated by Jasper Philipsen (Alpecin-Deceuninck) who has already won three stages, and was runner-up to Mads Pedersen (Lidl-Trek) on Saturday. Here’s what can be won by those targeting the maillot vert, the green jersey worn by the leader in the points classification, today:
Meanwhile, for those targeting the maillot à pois, the polka-dot jersey worn by the rider leading the mountains classification – Neilson Powless (EF Education-EasyPost) – here is a breakdown of the points available:
The mythical Puy de Dôme has not been included in the Tour de France since 1988, when Danish rider Johnny Weltz won the stage ahead of Rolf Gölz of Germany and Pedro Delgado, the Spaniard who went on to win that year’s Tour. But it was events from the 1964 Tour when Raymond Poulidor (Mathieu van der Poel’s late grandfather) went shoulder-to-shoulder with great rival Jacques Anquetil in one of the race’s most famous moments. Neither went on the win the stage that day, that honour went to Spanish rider Julio Jiménez, but their duel that day that was captured so brilliantly on camera that has echoed down the years.
Given the great modern-day rivalry between race leader Jonas Vingegaard (Jumbo-Visma) and Tadej Pogacar (UAE Team Emirates) – both favourites for the stage win today – I would not be surprised if we were to see an explosive finale on the Puy de Dôme, which happens to be a dormant volcano.
#Latest #updates #peloton #returns #Puy #Dôme