Tour de France 2018: stage three

Heather Diaz
July 12, 2018

Team Sky, another unusual early starter, were booed by roadside spectators throughout their effort but posted nearly identical times through the first two time checks - as did BMC Racing, who also found themselves in an unfamiliar early start time.

Porte may be linked with a switch to the American Trek-Segafredo team next year, but the future of other riders and team staff is uncertain; and in the biggest race of the year, Monday's victory was the medicine they all collectively needed to reaffirm their overriding goal of reaching the finish as the team of the 2018 Tour victor.

Defending champion Chris Froome made up for some lost time at the Tour de France on Monday although Team Sky narrowly missed out on victory in the third stage, a 35.5-km team time trial won by American outfit BMC Racing.

With Froome, Yates and BMC's Richie Porte three of the four big losers among the general classification riders on Saturday, this stage did much to level the playing field.

"It's about what I expected, we thought we'd lose a bit to Froome and we lost a bit to Froome", said the dry-witted Quintana.

The result means BMC's Greg van Avermaet has taken the yellow jersey from Peter Sagan, whose team Bora-hansgrohe set a time of 39:36 after dropping him.

"But boy we are so happy to get here without having had two minutes stuck into us by Froome", he said of Bardet's 20 second deficit on the champion.

Bevin said it was a nervous wait watching Quick-Step Floors complete the course, but once they crossed seven seconds back in 38:53 he knew his team had won. "We're on track but there's still so much to go through".

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Federer didn't seemed bothered by being away from Centre Court when he cruised through the first set in just 26 minutes. Anderson then served it out, ending things with a 205kph service victor , and raised both arms overhead.

"I was counting down the hours until it began and the first day is one of the best of the year".

BMC Racing team in the third stage of the Tour de France.

"It's amusing because at the end of the day it's just another bike race. That's the nature of the game".

On a short climb at the halfway point in the course, however, the Belgian team was forced to regroup as the pace forced riders - including Gaviria - off the back, costing the handful of seconds that might have put Gilbert in yellow.

Times were taken from the fourth rider on each eight-man team to cross the line.

The Solvakian's Bora Hansgrohe team finished in seventh spot, 50 seconds down on the stage winners, but he will wear the green jersey on stage four. "If they could just go as long as they could and if they didn't feel great then just commit anyway, and that's what they did".

"You probably won't believe me but I didn't even think about it", he said of yellow. We just wanted to get that stage. "To win the stage with a team like we have here, and especially with the passing of Andy Rihs, is special", Porte said. "We are masters in it and I'm happy to be part of it".

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