The riders have already completed 35km of this stage and the main moment of significance cane at Saint Bertrand de Comminges, the 20km intermediate sprint point. Giant-Alpecin’s John Degenkolb led out the sprinters with Peter Sagan, André Greipel and Mark Cavendish closely in tow. Suddenly Sagan broke the line and the race was on for the green jersey points: Sagan passed Degenkolb on his right but Greipel ripped by on the left and won by a length. Sagan, in green today, still leads the sprint standings but that advantage has been eaten into a little.
Hello! Welcome along to stage 12 of the 2015 Tour de France. This might just be the most difficult day in the Pyrenees for the peloton: a brutal stage with four draining climbs in succession awaits, acting as vast hurdles before the finish at Plateau du Beille.
The hors catégorie climb to the line is a 15.8km ascent at an average gradient of 7.9%, the sixth occasion it is has marked the end of a Tour stage. In the past it has been an opportunity for the eventual overall winner to attack and claim a stage victory – previous winners at Plateau du Beille include Marco Pantani in 1998, Alberto Contador in 2007,
and Lance Armstrong in 2002 and 2004 . Our man who generated plenty of discussion yesterday, Tommy Voeckler, finished second here on a couple of occasions.