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Dublin: 5 °C Wednesday 27 March, 2019

Thomas triumphs in yellow, but booed on Alpe d'Huez

Dan Martin came home in 12th on a dramtic day in the high mountains.

The pack with Britain's Geraint Thomas, wearing the overall leader's yellow jersey speeds down Croix de Fer pass.
The pack with Britain's Geraint Thomas, wearing the overall leader's yellow jersey speeds down Croix de Fer pass.
Image: Peter Dejong

GERAINT THOMAS BECAME the first yellow jersey wearer since disgraced Lance Armstrong to triumph on the legendary Alpe d’Huez after a thrilling finale to a punishing Tour de France 12th stage on Thursday.

Ireland’s Dan Martin lost 1’45″ to the Sky rider, finishing in 12th. It leaves him in 10th position overall.

Thomas, along with teammate Chris Froome, was met by a chorus of boos and jeers at the finish as Team Sky’s domination of the race continued.

The Welshamn took the lead of the race with an impressive victory atop La Rosiere on what was the second day in the Alps.

In a thrilling finale to the 175.5 km race from Bourg Saint Maurice, the former track rider beat Dutchman Tom Dumoulin (Sunweb) by two seconds in a sprint to the line, with French climbing specialist Romain Bardet (AG2R) in third.

Thomas now leads teammate and four-time champion Chris Froome by 1min 39sec in the overall standings, with Dumoulin in third at 1:50.

However their hopes of soaking up their success were dashed when fans booed the Team Sky riders as they crossed the finished line.

Earlier, Froome narrowly avoided disaster when he was struck by a fan at the roadside. Italian rival Vincenzo Nibali also crashed due to a collision with a fan but finished the stage.

The last Tour de France race leader to triumph on the Alpe was Armstrong, who was wearing the yellow jersey when he won a time trial in 2004.

The American’s stage win, like all his results, were later scrapped from the history books after he was found guilty of doping throughout his career.

© – AFP, 2018

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