Geraint Thomas retains yellow jersey and makes Tour de France history

Тур де Франс-2018 Алафилипп эффектно побеждает в горах

The other top contenders - 2014 Tour victor Vincenzo Nibali, Nairo Quintana and Romain Bardet - finished 59 seconds behind Thomas on Wednesday.

"If people don't like Sky and want to boo, that's fine".

The new race leader has an advantage of 1 minute 25 seconds over Froome, who moves to second overall, with Dumoulin a further 19 seconds back in third place. "Don't touch the riders". Don't spit at us. Just let us race.

Attitudes toward Sky soured when Froome was involved in an asthma drug case stemming from last year's Spanish Vuelta - even though he was cleared of wrongdoing just days before the Tour started. Only Belgian great Eddy Merckx has won more stage wins on the Tour, with 34 stage victories to his name.

Tom Dumoulin (Team Sunweb) may have missed out on a stage win atop Alpe d " Huez on stage 12 of the Tour de France but the Dutchman solidified his position as Team Sky's main threat in the overall standings. 'I'm not sure what happened to Nibali, ' he said. "It's one of those things that's going to stay with me for the rest of my life".

Former champion Vincenzo Nibali crashed with about 4km left and ended seventh, 13 seconds off the pace. I rode over his back wheel and managed to get back on. Climbed for the first time at the Tour de France in 1952, the 21 switchbacks to the ski resort at Alpe d'Huez are iconic in the sport of cycling.

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The British team used valuable resources in their chase and by the time the race reached the final climb the cream of the Tour de France had risen to the top with Dumoulin still in contention.

"It's unreal", Thomas said. "It's a bit of a downer on the day".

Nibali said: "The road became narrower and there were no barriers". When Froome accelerated, I followed him, and I felt good, too, but then there was this slowing down, and I went down. Only five other riders, counting Nibali, are within four minutes of Thomas: Primoz Roglic of Slovenia, who flew under radar Thursday thanks to the exploits of his LottoNL-Jumbo teammate Kruijswijk; Romain Bardet of France; Sky defector Mikel Landa; and Kruijswijk himself.

The fan was later arrested by French police.

With the line nearing Thomas zipped up his jersey to show the Team Sky colours and logo, the action of a man expecting to be photographed in victory on the finishing line.

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