Good morning and welcome to VeloNews.com's live coverage of stage 7.
Today the Tour's CG contest begins in earnest with 199km route that begins in Tomblaine and ends with the race’s first mountaintop finish, at the ski resort of La Planche des Belles Filles. This is a tough opening salvo for the medium mountain stages that could see a change in the GC lead.
We've received confirmation that Giro d'Italia winner Ryder Hesjedal of Garmin-Sharp has abandoned the race as a result of injuries sustained during stage 6.
Vaughters to Eurosport: "It's not great, but we obviously need to come up with a new and better tactic...we've lost our GC hope."
Great question Sam. Will be interesting to see whether Wiggins or Cadel wants to light up these climbs - and risk needing to defend the jersey from here on out, or whether they'll just stick close to the main GC contenders.
Here's the GC as of the end of Stage Six
1. Fabian CANCELLARA, RadioShack-Nissan, in 29:22:36
2. Bradley WIGGINS, Sky, at :7
3. Sylvain CHAVANEL, Omega Pharma-Quick Step, at :7
4. Tejay VAN GARDEREN, BMC Racing, at :10
5. Denis MENCHOV, Katusha, at :13
6. Cadel EVANS, BMC Racing, at :17
7. Vincenzo NIBALI, Liquigas-Cannondale, at :18
8. Peter SAGAN, Liquigas-Cannondale, at :19
9. Andreas KLÖDEN, RadioShack-Nissan, at :19
10. Maxime MONFORT, RadioShack-Nissan, at :22
Yesterday's stage 6 was another win for Liquigas-Cannondale sensation Peter Sagan. Friday's stage results:
1. Peter SAGAN, Liquigas-Cannondale, in 4:37:00
2. André GREIPEL, Lotto-Belisol, at 0
3. Matthew Harley GOSS, Orica-GreenEdge, at 0
4. Kenny Robert VAN HUMMEL, Vacansoleil-DCM, at 0
5. Juan José HAEDO, Saxo Bank-Tinkoff Bank, at 0
6. Greg HENDERSON, Lotto-Belisol, at 0
7. Alessandro PETACCHI, Lampre-ISD, at 0
8. Luca PAOLINI, Katusha, at 0
9. Daryl IMPEY, Orica-GreenEdge, at 0
10. Brett LANCASTER, Orica-GreenEdge, at :4
A seven man break leads the peloton by 5:35 with 110.8km to go. The seven are Gauteir (EUC), Sanchez (RAB), Chris Sorensen (STB), Fofonov (AST), Martin Velits (OPQ), Albasini (OGE) and Riblon (ALM).
Seven man break has developed a lead of 5:12 with 107km remaining.
Chris Sorensen (Saxo Bank-Tinkoff Bank)
Martin Velits (Omega Pharma-Quickstep)
Riblon (AG2R la Mondiale).
Good morning to VeloNews.com's Matt Beaudin, on the ground in France. That's a great shot.
BMC's Philippe Gilbert has a flat, chasing back to the pack.
103.5km remaining, gap at 4:59
No doubt, guys. Some of the photos from yesterday's stage were heartbreaking.
Soon to hit the day's first climb, the Col du Grosse Pierre. The Cat 3 climb (3.1km/6.4%) comes just after today's intermediate sprint.
2k until the break hits the intermediate sprint.
Intermediate sprint point is in the town of Gerardmer. 1500 Euros to the first to cross the line.
First 15 riders over the line win Green Jersey points, so all seven are in luck.
Not that those points matter to any of these guys (the breakaway).
We're loading the buses to head for the top now. It's a crowded scene, for sure. Lots of fans, lots of journalists.
The real sprint will come in roughly 4 minutes time, as the sprinters hit Gerardmer.
Goss and Sagan going to fight it out?
Sagan takes intermediate sprint points as Goss has a technical problem.
Orica-GreenEDGE had Goss in place to fight it out, but he never jumped. Looks like he may have suffered a gearing problem.
You're right, Travis. Sagan was waiting for a jump that never quite happened.
Sagan takes 8 Green Jersey points.
Sagan now leads Green Jersey competition 217 to 185 over Goss.
91km remaining, seven man break at 5:07 over the main field as we approach today's first significant climb, the Cat 3 Col du Grosse Pierre.
Many are, but I wonder if Matt Goss is currently reconsidering?