Chris Froome of Team Sky and Omega Pharma-Quick Step’s Tony Martin were head and shoulders above the opposition at today’s Stage 11 individual time trial at the Tour de France.
Froome has more than doubled his lead on GC, while Martin, reigning world time trial champion, went a little more than 11 seconds quicker to clinch the second Tour de France stage victory of his career.
Here’s our round-up of some of the reaction.
Race leader Chris Froome of Team Sky, who moved a further 2 minutes clear of second placed Alejandro Valverde of Movistar today.
I think I started blowing in those last couple of kilometres when I came into the headwind in the final. I just struggled to keep that same momentum going.
I think I'm going to need every second that I can get so I'm really happy with that today. It was one of my best time trials, certainly.
Tony Martin fully deserves that stage win; he's an amazing time trial rider but my main target today was to try and extend my lead on the other GC rivals so I'm also really happy with my performance today.
I think I've got to take it as the way the general classification is, and look at Valverde as my biggest competitor at the moment. If last weekend is anything to go by, I think I'm going to need every second I can get at this stage.
Morale is great within the team and it's great to see Richie [Porte, who came fourth] doing alright today, that's him just saying, ‘Listen guys, I'm not out of this race – I'm still here and I'm still right at the front!'
Tony did a fantastic ride to win the stage and show why he's the world champion but I'm really happy with my time and having extended my lead on the general classification.
It's still a long way to go but I'm happy with the advantage that I've got at the moment.
Today’s stage winner and time trial world champion Tony Martin of Omega Pharma-Quick Step, who watched nervously as last man out Froome just shaded his times at the intermediate checks.
To be honest, I'd almost given up hope of the stage win. It was starting to look very disappointing when I saw Chris beat my times at the intermediate check.
I nearly started to cry. I couldn't believe it. I was more-or-less sure about the win as I had a good advantage to guys like ‘Chava' [Sylvain Chavanel] and [Michal] Kwiatkowski who are really strong time trial riders so I expected that Froome might get to within 30 seconds or something like that but not beating me at the intermediates.
Now I'm really happy and maybe it's nicer to win this way.
Luckily some of my skin is back [after crashing on Stage 1] and I can sleep on my back again. I'm more or less recovered... for sure there are still some wounds that are open but we riders are used to this so it's no problem any more.
When I heard that I could continue the Tour de France I knew I wouldn't be 100 per cent there for the team time trial but I always expect to have a good performance today and I'm really happy now that I could do that.
At the end of the day I'm the lucky guy and I think I deserve a little bit of luck.
Martin’s team mate Michal Kwiatowski, fifth today, who takes over the best young rider’s white jersey from Movistar’s Nairo Quintana.
I'm very happy about my performance but I actually did very well in every TT I've done this year so I keep on going that way.
I'm pleased with the result of today and happy for Tony and to have the white jersey back.
The third week is such a hard one for climbers and I think Nairo is such a good climber who will be hard to beat all the way to Paris but I'll not give up and I'll try to improve.
Born in Scotland, Simon moved to London aged seven and now lives in the Oxfordshire Cotswolds with his miniature schnauzer, Elodie. He fell in love with cycling one Saturday morning in 1994 while living in Italy when Milan-San Remo went past his front door. A daily cycle commuter in London back before riding to work started to boom, he's been news editor at road.cc since 2009. Handily for work, he speaks French and Italian. He doesn't get to ride his Colnago as often as he'd like, and freely admits he's much more adept at cooking than fettling with bikes.