Dumoulin furious as motorbike 'paces' rival to Tour stage win

Geraint Thomas far right passes behind police making an arrest at last week’s protest

Geraint Thomas far right passes behind police making an arrest at last week’s protest

The 32 year-old from Cardiff, who has led this Tour de France since stage 11 last Wednesday, finished third in yesterday's penultimate day time trial in Espelette, a tiny town in the south west corner of France, to effectively wrap up what has been an extraordinary Tour de France.

Thomas started the 105th edition of the race expected to provide support as Froome sought a record-equalling fifth Tour de France that would have allowed him to join previous greats like Jacques Anquetil, Eddy Merckx, Bernard Hinault and Miguel Indurain.

Thomas remained 1 minute, 59 seconds ahead of Tom Dumoulin with the Welshman's Sky teammate and four-time champion Chris Froome third, 2:31 behind.

Thomas, a Welsh rider with Team Sky, takes a lead of one minute, 51 seconds over Tom Dumoulin into the mostly ceremonial finish on the Champs-Elysees in Paris on Sunday. In third place, Lotto NL-Jumbo's Primoz Roglic needed to overhaul Dumoulin by 19 seconds to move up to second, while Froome needed to beat Roglic by 13 seconds to get into the top three.

Team Sky are not without their critics, with even a British parliamentary committee accusing them of misusing legal medication for sporting gains.

Sure, the crash Froome endured on that opening day handed Thomas an immediate advantage.

"Insane, just stayed in my own little bubble really and didn't let any of the outside things in and by the sound of things it has gone pretty nuts at home so I am looking forward to getting back". "I heard I was up and maybe I was pushing it a bit hard on some of those corners", Thomas said.

He posed for cameras with his national flag and Dave Brailsford, the man behind all of Team Sky's Tour de France victories, who was brought up in Wales.

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Dumoulin, the defending world time trial champion and last year's Giro d'Italia victor, praised an otherwise impressive performance by Roglic.

"It's very nice to win today, what can I say. I'm really sick of it, it doesn't make sense". He can also make it Sky's sixth victory in the last seven years.

Team Sky's Chris Froome, a four-time victor and the current holder of the Tour de France, was one second behind Dumoulin and came second. "I worked hard in the mountains before the Tour, and as a result, I made it through mountain stages when most of the sprinters did not".

Stage victor Dumoulin said: "It's an fantastic day".

On Saturday, Froome reminded everyone why he's won six grand tours.

The Welshman said after: "The last time I cried was when I got married".

"I only have respect for him".

"To win on Alpe d'Huez in the yellow jersey".

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