Thomas comes through final mountain test after Roglic rises to third

July 27, 2018

Welcome to the Cyclingnews podcast, brought to you by Prendas Ciclismo, Pinarello and Floyds of Leadville.

As the sun sets on the Tour’s 19th stage, between Lourdes and Laruns, so the ambitions of Geraint Thomas’s rivals are slowly sinking below the horizon. In one of the hardest stages of the 2018 Tour, crossing multiple climbs, the Welshman extended his overall advantage over second-placed Tom Dumoulin to two minutes and five seconds. With only a 31-kilometre time trial and the Paris sprint stage to come, it looks like Thomas will win his first Tour de France on Sunday.

LottoNL-Jumbo’s Primoz Roglic was the winner on the day. The Slovenian attacked on the descent of the final mountain of the Tour, the Col d’Aubisque, and flew to a 19-second advantage, overtaking defending champion Chris Froome in the overall standings to go into the final weekend third overall.

It was a dynamic day’s racing. Mikel Landa, Ilnur Zakarin and Romain Bardet, all in the top 10, attacked as early as the Col du Tourmalet with 100 kilometres to go. While Landa rose as high as second on the virtual general classification, Sky and LottoNL-Jumbo worked to close the gap. When the race came together again on the Aubisque, Roglic, his team-mate Kruijswijk and Tom Dumoulin all made attacks, but none shook off Thomas, though Froome was temporarily distanced. Over the top, it all came together before Roglic finally broke away.


Tour de France: Quintana wins, Thomas takes control and Froome loses ground

July 25, 2018

Stage 17 of the Tour de France confirmed that Geraint Thomas (Team Sky) is now the clear favourite to win the overall title. On a short, sharp stage that started in Bagnères-de-Luchon, and crossed the Col de Peyresourde and Col de Val Louron Azet en route to the finish on the Col de Portet, Thomas matched nearly all his rivals and gained time on both Tom Dumoulin and Primoz Roglic.

His teammate and four-time Tour winner, Chris Froome, finished almost a minute behind the Welshman, while Nairo Quintana finally showed some form, attacking near the bottom of the final climb to win alone.

Thomas now leads Dumoulin by 1:59 and Froome is in third, 2:31 behind.

Elsewhere, Julian Alaphilippe scored points on both early climbs to all but secure the mountain classification, but green jersey Peter Sagan crashed at speed on a descent. He made it to the finish, and will continue in the race.

In this exclusive Cyclingnews podcast from the Tour de France, brought to you in association with Prendas CiclismoPinarello and Floyd's of Leadville, we hear from Thomas, while Ed Pickering and Daniel Benson analyse of the best days of racing at this year's Tour.

Tour de France: Thomas’ predictions, Brailsford’s astonishing press conference

July 24, 2018

After the final Tour de France rest day on Monday, the race kicked back into gear with the first stage in the Pyrenees and a finish in Luchon. Julian Alaphilippe took the honours after Adam Yates crashed while leading, and the GC battle flickered but never burst into flames.

 Earlier in the stage, the race was neutralized after police were forced to use pepper spray on a group of protesters - with some of the chemicals reaching the riders and forcing a break in proceedings.

In this Tour de France podcast, brought to you in association with Prendas CiclismoPinarello and Floyd's of Leadville, Daniel Benson and Ed Pickering hear from Adam Yates, Geraint Thomas, Steven Kruijswijk, and Heinrich Haussler on the stage, and take a look ahead to Wednesday's decisive 65km mountain stage.

 We also wind the clock back 24 hours to Team Sky' press conference and play the recording from Dave Brailsford almost 10-minute long question and answers session. During the press conference, Brailsford was asked about Gianni Moscon - thrown off the race for punching a fellow competitor - the DCMS report and the hostile environment Team Sky have raced under during this year's Tour.

 Brailsford responded by saying, "It's interesting. We raced in Italy, and Chris' case was open when we were at the Tour of Italy, and the Italians were fantastic, to be fair to them. The Spanish, fantastic. It just seems to be a French thing.

 "It's like a French cultural thing really, isn't it? That's it. I'm not sure that they would have liked their football players spat at in Russia [at the World Cup -ed]. I'm sure that there would be a word or two about that. But it's OK to spit on us and our staff."

Tour de France: Transition stages in review featuring Thomas, Froome, Southam

July 22, 2018

It’s Sunday evening and the Tour de France heads into its second rest-day with the race pausing in Carcassonne until Tuesday morning. The last two stages have been decided by breaks, with Astana winning on both occasions. Behind the stage honors lies the delicate battle for the GC with Geraint Thomas and Chris Froome sitting ahead of Tom Dumoulin.

 In the latest Cyclingnews podcast we hear from both Team Sky riders on the environment they’ve faced at the race with pockets of fans booing the yellow jersey and his team. We also hear from Tom Southam on how EF Education First are hoping to bounce back from losing Rigoberto Uran – their hope for the overall standings.

And we also hear from former footballer Frank de Boer, who is at the race for Dutch television. De Boer talks about the Ajax philosophy, entertaining football and if the same ethos can be transferred to cycling.

 This podcast is brought to you in association with Prendas Ciclismo, Pinarello and Floyds of Leadville. 


Tour de France: the Alps in review

July 19, 2018

In the latest episode of the Cyclingnews podcast - brought to you in association with Prendas CiclismoPinarello and Flyods of Leadville - we look back at a pulsating stage 12 of the Tour de France that culminated in Geraint Thomas winning the stage to Alpe d'Huez and extending his lead in the overall. The Team Sky rider now leads defending champion and teammate Chris Froome by 1:39, with Tom Dumoulin a further 11 seconds in arrears.

In the episode, recorded at the summit of today's finish, we hear from Thomas, Dumoulin and surprise package Primoz Roglic. Ed Pickering from Pro Cycling, and CN's Daniel Benson run through the action from the stage and evaluate the important performances from the Alps. The last three stages have seen the race shift and alter each day, and the podcast team look over the likes of Movistar, AG2R and of course discuss the growing leadership debate at Team Sky.

Team Sky take control on first summit finish

July 19, 2018

The latest Cyclingnews podcast – brought to you in association with Prendas Ciclismo, Pinarello and Floyds of Leadville – was recorded following a dramatic stage 11 from Albertville to La Rosiere.

 In it we hear from stage winner and new yellow jersey Geraint Thomas (Team Sky), and UAE Team Emirates’ Dan Martin. Cyclingnews editor Daniel Benson and Sadhbh O’Shea talk about the shake-up in the general classification and ask whether or not Team Sky can all but wrap up the GC in Thursday’s Alpe d’Huez.

 We also hear from Heinrich Haussler with his latest podcast blog from the Tour de France.

Tour de France: Team Sky leadership, Ochowicz and CCC, Dumoulin and Degenkolb

July 16, 2018

 The Tour de France may have reached its first rest day but that hasn't meant that the circus surrounding the race has come to a halt. Cyclingnews spent the day hopping between press conferences at Team SkySunwebTrek-Segafredo and BMC Racing to pick up the latest news.

We started the morning in Chambery, where we picked up the leadership question at Team Sky with both Geraint Thomas and Chris Froome discussing the options that lay ahead. Then it was over to Trek-Segafredo for a catch up with stage 9 winner John Degenkolb, before Jim Ochowicz announced to the media that CCC would step in and save his team.

Finally, we headed to Sunweb to hear from Tom Dumoulin on his challenge and his rivals. No stage but another action-packed day at the Tour with analysis from Daniel Benson and Ed Pickering.

The Festina Affair 20 years on

July 12, 2018

The 2018 Tour de France is now in full swing but 20 years ago the race was on its knees and almost failed to reach Paris due to the Festina Affair. The trauma opened up cycling’s underworld of doping and widespread cheating, with riders arrested, teams searched and several strikes disrupting the race. Festina were sent home in disgrace but as the race disintegrated even further, ethical, legal and moral boundaries were stretched to breaking point. The race was won by the late Marco Pantani but the action was overshadowed by doping that stretched throughout the peloton.

 Twenty years on and we sit down with one of cycling’s most experienced journalists, William Fotheringham, who was there in 1998 to capture the entire experience first-hand. Fotheringham discusses how the whole saga snowballed from the moment Festina soigneur Willy Voet was arrested at customs to how the race organisers were unable to keep pace with the authorities as the clampdown on doping began.

 This of course all happened in an age before social media, and Fotheringham gives a fascinating insight into how a number of parties, not least the media, wrestled with the ever-changing landscape and narrative.

 Fotheringham, interviewed by Cyclingnews’ Daniel Benson, also talks about the generation of riders who came through those times and helped to change the sport but also revisits cycling’s darkest times, the wild west and the casual criminality in which the sport often operated.

 We also discuss how much has cycling changed since those days and what lessons can the sport still learn, while there are brief cameo interviews with several riders who took part in the race.

 This Cyclingnews podcast is brought to you in association with Prendas Ciclismo, Pinarello and Floyds of Leadville.

BMC Racing TTT win, and GC analysis

July 9, 2018

 The latest Cyclingnews podcast, brought to you in association with Prendas Ciclismo, Pinarello and Floyds of Leadville, was recorded before and after the team time trial on stage 3 of the Tour de France.

 Featuring Chris Froome, Geraint Thomas, Richie Porte and new yellow jersey Greg Van Avermaet, the team of Daniel Benson and Ed Pickering break down the GC battle after three gripping stages.

We also look back at the wins for Fernando Gaviria and Peter Sagan before discussing the winners and losers from stage 3 and the team trial around Cholet.

Opening day chaos at the Tour de France

July 7, 2018

Without crosswinds and rain, the opening stage of the 2018 Tour de France was supposed to be a calm, almost predictable, affair, with the sprinters' teams set to dominate.

The biggest losers were arguably Nairo Quintana (Movistar), who lost over a minute, and Chris Froome (Sky) and BMC's Richie Porte, who both conceded 51 seconds to their closest rivals. The Tour is only a day old, but has already started to create a pecking order in terms of the yellow jersey.

We hear from Froome, his teammate Geraint Thomas, and Porte.

The stage was won by Quick-Step's Fernando Gaviria, who claimed his maiden stage on his first outing in the race. We look at his chances for the rest of the week, and hear world champion Peter Sagan's (Bora-Hansgrohe) thoughts on the stage.