In one of the most exciting time trial stages of the race thus far, it was Team Sky’s Chris Froome (51 minutes, 33 seconds) who won his third portion of the 2013 Tour de France by taking Stage 17 with a nine-second advantage over second-place finisher Alberto Contador (51:42).
Froome retains the overall lead in the general classification and yellow jacket once again by winning the 20-mile trial, furthering his lead to 4:34 over Contador.
As the Tour de France continues, expect the battle between Froome and Contador to become even more intense. Neither man wants to lose.
While the field has closed in on the overall leader, the race is now heading toward the mountains where Froome has been dominant.
With all the momentum on his side because of his three stage victories thus far, look for the British star to continue holding the yellow jersey while fending off Contador.
This year’s race is Froome’s to lose.
Spanish star Joaquim Rodriguez (51:43) also had a stellar run on the Stage 17 time trial and managed to finish in third place overall. Additionally, Roman Kreuziger (51:56) raced well on Wednesday and brought home the fourth-place finish.
Alejandro Valverde finished fifth with a time of 52:03, and the best American finisher was Andrew Talansky, who ended up in ninth place with a very respectable time of 53:14.
Despite the hard work shown by the stars of the sport on Stage 17, the cyclists will be back in action Thursday for the next mountain portion of the race. Stage 18 travels from Gap to Alpe d'Huez in a 172.5-kilometer (107-mile) trip through the beautiful visuals in the Alps.
The cyclists will face three mountain stages in a row, and this is where the champions separate themselves from the field.
Stage 17 Standings
|3||Joaquim RODRIGUEZ OLIVER||00:51:43||00:00:10||34|
|6||Nairo Alexander QUINTANA ROJAS||00:52:44||00:01:11||23|
|10||Tejay VAN GARDEREN||00:53:24||00:01:51||24|
|5||Nairo Alexander QUINTANA ROJAS||66:14:07||00:06:58||MOV|
|6||Joaquim RODRIGUEZ OLIVER||66:14:30||00:07:21||KAT|
|7||Laurens TEN DAM||66:15:32||00:08:23||BEL|
Full results and standings at NBC Sports.