BMC take team time trial stage but Froome makes gains

Peter Sagan is happy to be back at the Tour after being kicked out early in 2017

Peter Sagan is happy to be back at the Tour after being kicked out early in 2017

"We gave it everything we had and it all went pretty much to plan. But this is the biggest one in the world and you get to stand up there on the podium with your team-mates, and having a team-mate jump into the yellow jersey is another cool aspect", said Bevin, who is now the third New Zealand rider to triumph in team time trial at the Tour, following past successes from Julian Dean and Chris Jenner.

"Obviously the [Tour] didn't start too well with the crash on stage one but that's bike racing".

"Our aim was to take the maximum time out of all our rivals", he insisted.

Demare was first to go for the sprint, but Sagan latched onto his wheel and came round him to take the win ahead of Bahrain-Merida's Sonny Colbrelli, with Demare in third place. "I love France and the Tour, which is the most attractive race on the planet". "I think I am in good condition and I have a good team around me but there are no doubts that this is the most important test of the season for me".

"I'll be wearing the yellow jersey probably for only one day, but I'm happy for that. That's just the nature of the game".

After that, the gaps became more significant.

Title contenders Vincenzo Nibali, Tom Dumoulin and Romain Bardet are 16 seconds behind Sagan, giving them an early advantage over Froome.

"They were the second to last team and they had a great ride".

A 35-kilometre-long team time trial is scheduled at TdF for Monday.

The pressure has unquestionably risen on Froome and Team Sky in spite of anti-doping authorities ending their investigation into this salbutamol levels, but he is adamant that he is able to put the pressure to the side and focus on the task at hand.

Midway around the course first Luke Rowe and then Wout Poels dropped off the back of their train, and it perhaps proved key as BMC carried more speed through the second half of the course.

A year after leaving the Tour de France in disgrace, Peter Sagan earned the race's yellow jersey on Sunday after doing what he does best: Powering past the competition to reach the finish line.

Greg van Avermaet was the virtual leader when Peter Sagan, in the yellow jersey, rolled down the ramp with Bora-hansgrohe and Fernando Gaviria set off with Quick-Step Floors. That would have been a nice bonus on top. "Everyone is working well together and we have a strong team and Richie can be up there". "Close but not quite quick enough".

For Porte, the stage win took on special significance as it marked a year since he crashed out of last year's Tour on the decent into Chambery on the ninth stage.

The rest of the teams seemed happy to let the Belgian squad do the hard work, and preserve energy for final sprint. Once the three were away, the main pack closed ranks to ensure that no other riders could join the break.

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