Published: Tue, July 24, 2018
Sports | By Toni Houston

Tour halted after riders are hit by pepper spray

Tour halted after riders are hit by pepper spray

"If you don't want global teams to come, you can have a Tour de France for French teams". After fans threw flares at riders in the climb to the ski resort of Alpe d'Huez, Tour organisers banned the use of smoke flares for the rest of the race.

Team Sky general manager Dave Brailsford said he accepted the decision to exclude Moscon.

Sky has uncommon wealth, vast ambition and an ability to stock its roster with riders with the talent to lead any squad in the peloton--all of which has created an unexpected headache.

The Welshman took the Yellow Jersey at the 11th stage of the Grande Boucle and though his position in relation with Chris Froome has been the object of questioning.

With one week remaining, Froome sits second in the overall standings, 1 minute and 39 seconds behind Sky teammate Geraint Thomas.

Dumoulin acknowledges he finds himself in a unusual position as he waits to see how Froome will approach the final stages behind his team-mate, despite the Kenya-born Briton stating he will offer Thomas support.

"As we and the riders are trying to ease the pressure, it's wrong that a team manager pours oil on the fire".

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"I've been feeling pretty good".

Race leader Geraint Thomas was booed on the podium ceremony after winning that stage this week.

"We expect a lot of attacks from the start".

With Sky dominating the Tour in recent years and easily chasing down any attacks from far out, the shorter stages should lessen the British team's ability to maintain control.

After a nine-month investigation - during which Froome constantly protested his innocence - cycling's governing body the UCI, on the advice of experts from the World Anti-Doping Agency, dropped the case just before the Tour began earlier in July. "It's for all the other riders in the peloton to make up time on us and dislodge us from the position we're in".

Brailsford dismissed any concerns over the potential impact of Gianni Moscon's disqualification from the race for punching a fellow rider and re-iterated that his management team would decide on Moscon's future once the Tour was over.

Speaking of Froome's form peaking in the third week, Wiggins reasserted that '10 days into the Giro everyone thought Chris was going to climb off and go home.

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