/ Cycling

Nibali claims Le Tour stage win and yellow jersey

Updated: Monday, 14 Jul 2014 18:30 | Comments

Vincenzo Nibali cycles the finishing straight of stage ten
Vincenzo Nibali cycles the finishing straight of stage ten

There were Bastille Day fireworks on stage ten of the Tour de France on Monday as Alberto Contador abandoned following a crash and Vincenzo Nibali reclaimed the yellow jersey with a tremendous victory at La Planche des Belles Filles.

Contador crashed on the 161.5km tenth stage from Mulhouse and, after struggling on for 20km in an effort to play catch-up, gave up and withdrew to his Tinkoff-Saxo team car.

Contador went for scans after the race and Tour organisers confirmed he sustained a fractured tibia (shin bone) in a statement on letour.com.

It read: "Alberto Contador suffered a shin bone fracture after his crash 95km from the finish of stage 10 between Mulhouse and La Planche des Belles Filles."

The Spaniard's departure deprives the race of another previous winner after 2013 champion Chris Froome (Team Sky) withdrew with fractures to his left wrist and right hand on stage five last Wednesday.

Andy Schleck (Trek Factory Racing), who inherited the 2010 title from Contador following an anti-doping infringement, quit the race with a knee injury last Tuesday, although the Luxembourg rider is a shadow of his former self.

None of the remaining riders have won the event, but Nibali took a significant step in his bid to succeed Froome in Paris on 27 July.

The action was expected to ignite on the concluding climb ahead of Tuesday's rest day and Nibali, who relinquished the lead on stage nine to Frenchman Tony Gallopin (Lotto-Belisol), surged to a second Tour stage win to take control of the race.

Gallopin struggled, losing the maillot jaune after a one-day stint.

Stage 11 takes place on Wednesday as the race heads for the Alps with the 187.5km route from Besancon to Oyonnax.

Ireland's Nicolas Roche came home 106th on the stage, 28:40 behind Nibali, having dropped back to help his team leader Contador. The knock-on effect is that Roche now lies 51st overall, 46:56 off the yellow jersey in the GC.

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