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Tour de France - *Tournus - Station des Rousses

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  1. 16:50 - Thanks for joining us today - see you tomorrow for the Alpine slog to Morzine/Avoriaz.

  2. 0km - GC Top Five: 1. Chavanel, 2. Evans +1:25, 3. Hesjedal +1:32, 4. A. Schleck +1:55, 5. Vinokourov +2:17.

  3. 0km - Stage 7 top ten: 1. Sylvain Chavanel (France / Quick-Step) 4hrs 22mins 52secs, 2. Rafael Valls (Spain / Footon) +57", 3. Juan Manuel Garate (Spain / Rabobank) +1:27", 4. Thomas Voeckler (France / Bbox - Bouygues) +1:40", 5. Mathieu Perget (France / Caisse d'Epargne), 6. Daniel Moreno (Spain / Omega Pharma - Lotto), 7. Pierrick Fedrigo (France / Bbox - Bouygues) +1:47", 8. Ryder Hesjedal (Canada / Garmin), 9. Ruben Plaza (Spain / Caisse d'Epargne), 10. Eros Capecchi (Italy / Footon).

  4. 0km - Fabian Cancellara is still riding even though Chavanel finished almost ten minutes ago - it's been one of those days...

  5. 0km - Congratulations to Sylvain Chavanel for taking the yellow jersey - and to his team-mate Jerome Pineau for conserving the polka dot jersey.

  6. 0km - Valls Ferri leaves tyre marks in the melted tar-mac as he crosses the line for second place, 57 seconds down. Garate takes third at 1'27" and Voeckler leads the chasing group over at 1'40". The pack comes home at 1'48".

  7. 0km - Chavanel is elated as he rides to the line, punching the air, kissing his crucifix and raising his arms aloft! Victory in stage seven and the yellow jersey to boot. What a day for the QuickStep leader.

  8. 1km - Into the final kilometre for Chavanel, a deserved victor today.

  9. 2km - It's so good to see Chavanel finally realising his true potential - what a result this will be for him today. Further back, Le Mevel has passed the likes of Voeckler and Cunego.

  10. 4km - The Voeckler group has almost been caught by the peloton now. Interestingly, Chavanel is wearing no numbers on his jersey - due to a change earlier in the stage. Just four to go for the Frenchman. Back in the peloton, FdJ's Christophe Le Mevel has a pop - surely a waste of energy at this point? Over the summit goes Chavanel, and he's now riding into yellow with stage win number two.

  11. 5km - Pineau has been caught by the main bunch now. He'll have his work cut out to keep in touch with this select group now... Up front, Chavanel is slowing but he only has one kilometre left of the climb before it hits the plateau and the run off to the finish.

  12. 6km - This is a gutsy pursuit by the 23-year-old Valls Ferri, a relative unknown from Footon-Servetto. He's about 40 secs down on Chavanel, with the Voeckler group another 20 secs back. Apparently Liquigas's Roman Kreuziger has cracked and is riding back with the bus...

  13. 9km - Under the 10-to-go banner for Sylvain Chavanel - en route for a second win in less than a week. He has 34" over Valls Ferri. While the stage is not guaranteed, he should be in yellow... although who knows, if there's an attack from one of the main protagonsists back in the peloton, this stage will take on a whole new dynamic. Just to clarify: Cancellara is 5'30" back - but the peloton includes all the big favourites except Kloeden.

  14. 10km - Britain's Geraint Thomas is being slowly distanced by the peloton. Apparently he punctured at the beginning of the climb and he's really paying for the effort he needed to get back up with the main bunch.

  15. 11km - Chavanel has 28" over the Voeckler group, which has come back together, and about two minutes over the peloton. Perget attacks from the chasing group! Only Pineau can hold his wheel. But Valls Ferri is further up the road - the cameras missed that one.

  16. 12km - Cancellara is on the front of a second group behind the peloton - he won't be waring the maillot jaune tonight. A fierce pace set by Astana means loads of riders have been blown out the back, included Andreas Kloeden and Sylvester Szmyd.

  17. 13km - Chavanel has caught and passed Pineau, who looks completely roasted. His work for the day is done though - those polka dots are assured for at least another day. Voeckler manages to catch Cunego. The pair pass Pineau. So, the stage will surely be won by either Voeckler, Chavanel or Cunego now.

  18. 14km - Chavanel is approaching his team-mate Pineau on the front of the race. A superb day for them both. Cunego attacks from the chasing group - he's the danger man for the stage. The Lampre rider is certainly the best climber of them all. Regardless, Chavanel could be in yellow tonight - what a headline that would be.

  19. 16km - Back in the peloton, it's BMC's George Hincapie who's onto the front with his special stars and stripes shirt unzipped. Saxo Bank riders tail him. Meanwhile, Stephen Roche's tip for the day Edvald Boasson Hagen has hit the wall! He's totally cooked. He'll lose a lot of time on this final climb. David Millar too has been dropped.

  20. 17km - Chavanel is digging hard. He's about to catch Hondo. In fact, he has - and dropped him instantly. Le Chav looks in pain - his mouth is agape and he's really grimacing on this, the steepest part of the final climb of the day, the second category Cote de Lamour. Not much love going on out there, that's for sure.

  21. 18km - DOUBLE QUICK STEP ATTACK! Pineau leaves Hondo for dead while Chavanel jumps clear of the other chasing group. What a strategy...

  22. 18km - Pineau and Hondo are deep in debate - probably forming some kind of strategy for the final climb to Les Rousses. They have 58 seconds over the Chavanel group. The peloton is 2'54"back.

  23. 20km - Chavanel is leading the chasing group. What a great Tour the Frenchman is having. Linus Gerdemann of Milram has left the peloton. He's a descender of enormous ability. Does he have no fear?

  24. 24km - An HTC-Columbia rider attacks on the descent - looks like Suitsou. Up front, Hondo is hugging the frame of his bike as he powers down to the valley, with Pineau a dangerous 30cm behind. Fast riding.

  25. 28km - Astana and RadioShack have moved to the front of the peloton - surely with an eye on the approaching descent, which is long and fast. Cancellara is right on the back of the peloton, but he's so fast on the downhill that he'll be back in the mix for the final climb. The gap to the leaders is 2'12" as they cross the summit.

  26. 30km - Summit of the Col de la Croix de la Serra: Pineau takes maximum points ahead of Hondo. Now they need an epic descent if they want to stand any chance of victory in Rousses. The chasing group is at 53 seconds.

  27. 32km - One kilometre to the summit for the two leaders. The road is extremely narrow. There doesn't seem to be any cohesion in the chasing group. Back in the peloton, Euskaltel's Egoi Martinez jumps clear to try his luck. He's joined by Nocentini.

  28. 33km - Pineau and Hondo still have 1'58" on the peloton. Chavanel has joined his compatriots Voeckler and Gautier - exciting times for French fans.

  29. 34km - Knees has been caught by the Voeckler group. Cancellara is back again in the peloton - the Swiss riding this climb like a yoyo.

  30. 35km - Sylvain Chavanel attacks from the peloton - he's taken a Rabobank rider and a Katusha rider with him.

  31. 36km - Rafael Valls Ferri of Footon-Servetto has joined the Voeckler group of seven riders. Cancellara has been dropped again by the peloton and is riding alongside George Hincapie of BMC. On the front of the peloton is AG2R's Rinaldo Nocentini, who led the race for 10 days last year.

  32. 37km - Cancellara and Martin have finally rejoined the back of the peloton. The Swiss will want to keep his yellow jersey for tomorrow's stage, which passes near to the Swiss border.

  33. 38km - The Bbox Bouygues pair of Voeckler and Gathier are attacking one after the other as they try and coerce the group into pulling together and staying out ahead. Knees has been dropped by Pineau and Hondo on the front.

  34. 39km - Cunego has joined the Voeckler group but they're being reeled in by the peloton. Up front, Perez and Dumoulin has been dropped by Pineau, Hondo and Knees.

  35. 40km - The five leaders have about 40 seconds on the Voeckler group, with the peloton at 1'15" and the Cancellara chasing group - which includes Tony Martin - riding at 1'38". Interesting.

  36. 41km - Yellow jersey Fabian Cancellara has been dropped by the peloton. Not sure if that was a technical problem because he seems to be riding ok...

  37. 42km - CRASH! Astana's Jesus Hernandez hits the deck but gets back on his bike ok.

  38. 42km - Voeckler and Gautier are joined by Matt Lloyd (Lotto), Alessandro Ballan (BMC) and Mathieu Perget (Caisse d'Epargne). Damiano Cunego (Lampre) is trying to chase them down.

  39. 42km - ATTACK! Thomas Voeckler drops the hammer and pings off the front! The Frenchman is followed by his team-mate Cyril Gautier...

  40. 43km - A second peloton is forming as the likes of green jersey Thor Hushovd fall off the pace as the road gets steeper. Alessandro Petacchi and Robbie Hunter are riding between the two groups. It's still Bbox Bouygues doing all the hard work on the front.

  41. 44km - Just had a chat with Stephen Roche in the Eurosport head office. His tip for the day? Edvald Boasson Hagen. "I can't see the breakaway staying out much longer but I can't see any of the favourites being given the opportunity to go clear. The finish suits a good climber who has a decent kick - Tony Martin perhaps. But it looks ideal for Boasson Hagen. He came close last week to a victory, but today's sprint after the final climb could be his moment. But don't discount Sylvain Chavenel either."

  42. 45km - The leaders are on to the nursery slopes of the second category Col de la Croix de la Serra. They have just 2'49" now so don't expect them to stay out much longer.

  43. 46km - Poor Robbie McEwen has been dropped by the peloton and is riding a few minutes off the back. The Australian clearly suffering from that unnecessary fall after the finish line yesterday.

  44. 50km - The riders are going through the feeding zone and so their rhythm has been a bit disrupted. Many of them have come to a stand still as musettes are gathered, empty bottles are thrown away and bikes are checked. The lead is 3'35".

  45. 55km - BMC have moved onto the front alongside BBox for the descent. It's Alessandro Ballan doing the hard work.

  46. 58km - Dumoulin picked up 7pts and Hondo 6pts. Then there was a four minute gap until Charteau led the peloton over the summit to take 6pts.

  47. 60km - No surprises over the top of the Cote du Barrage du Vouglans: Pineau (10pts), Perez (9pts) and Knees (8pts). The Frenchman is building up a good lead in the polka dot jersey competition which should now keep him in spots through the rest day on Monday.

  48. 63km - The lead is falling steadily: it's now 4'30". Expect the five escapees to stay ahead over this and probably the next peak before it all exploding on the ascent to Rousses.

  49. 65km - The temperatures in the valley are up to 34 degrees celsius now. Sweltering stuff.

  50. 66km - The Cote du Barrage de Vouglans is the first of three second category climbs on the agenda in the second half of this stage. It's Knees setting the pace, from Dumoulin and Hondo.

  51. 68km - The five leaders - Christian Knees (Milram), Danilo Hondo (Lampre), Jerome Pineau (QuickStep), Ruben Perez (Euskaltel-Euskadi) and Samuel Dumoulin (Cofidis) - are nearing the fourth climb of the day. Meanwhile, the peloton pass by the vast damn responsible for the keeping the Lac de Vouglans full.

  52. 70km - With his win yesterday, Mark Cavendish continued his climb up the point classification. The Manxman is now 5th, 33 points behind leader Thor Hushovd, who has been rather quiet in the sprints since his win over the cobbles in stage three. Green jersey standings

  53. 72km - One man who could feasibly be in yellow tonight is Sky's Geraint Thomas who has been a revelation this Tour, currently second at 20 seconds. Thomas is the best young rider at the moment, 49secs ahead of Andy Schleck. White jersey standings

  54. 76km - The peloton pass over the top over the Arithod at 5'55" down on the leaders.

  55. 80km - Remember, you can enjoy our comprehensive coverage LIVE now on British Eurosport (Sky 410 / Virgin 521) and on the Eurosport Player!

  56. 81km - At the summit of the Cote d'Arinthod, Pineau (4pts) crosses first ahead of Perez (3pts) and Dumoulin (2pts) to further consolidate his lead in the polka dot jersey standings.

  57. 82km - Robbie McEwen is receiving some treatment back at the medical car: looks like some painkiller tablets and some pain relief gel for his elbow. Keep plugging away, Robbie. And watch out for those camera men...

  58. 83km - Puncture for Gerard Ciolek. The Milram man changes his rear wheel without too much ado.

  59. 84km - German champion Knees is the first to give in and unzip his shirt entirely, leaving it to flap in the wind as he climbs the Cote d'Arinthod with his four fellow escapees. Pineau is on the front, ready to pounce for those mountain points.

  60. 84km - Now the whole of BBox-Bouygues come to the front of the peloton. Thomas Voeckler must be regretting wearing that inner vest today, that's for sure...

  61. 85km - And with the arrival of the mountains in this year's Tour comes the inevitable arrival of the gormless spectators who insist on running alongside the riders topless for their two seconds of fame...

  62. 88km - Amazing pictures from the helicopter over the stupendously turquoise Lac de Vouglans. Viewers all around the world would have had a moment there - while holiday bookings for France and the Jura mountains will no doubt rocket.

  63. 90km - No break for the leaders, who are onto the third category Cote d'Arinthod.

  64. 90km - CRASH! Anthony Roux takes a tumble at the back of the peloton. It looks like the Francaise des Jeux rider wasn't paying attention and touched wheels with someone before going down on his side. Given the gradient, he wasn't going very fast, but that would have shaken him up somewhat.

  65. 95km - Pineau (3pts) gets maximum points ahead of Perez (2pts) and Dumoulin (1pt) atop the Cote des Granges. The QuickStep rider now has 20 points in the polka dot jersey standings, eight ahead of compatriot Mathieu Perget, who isn't in today's break.

  66. 97km - The lead has dropped for the first time in quite a bit. It's now 7'30". Charteau's still the man on the front of the peloton - odd seeing that none of his BBox teammates are there alongside him.

  67. 100km - Come to think of it, those firemen really missed a trick: surely they should have doused the whole peloton with cool water from their hoses?

  68. 102km - A group of firemen with their big red engine have gathered on the side of the road to applaud the riders - keep up the good work boys, and in this heat, watch out for the forest fires. The peloton has really strung out as it zips through this valley - they will soon hit the Cote des Granges.

  69. 105km - The lead is pretty stable at 8'25" as the leaders move on to the fourth category Cote des Granges, the second of six climbs today.

  70. 108km - In the peloton, it's Anthony Charteau of Bbox-Bouygues setting the pace, followed by the entire SaxoBank team of yellow jersey Fabian Cancellara and then a cluster of Astana riders, including reigning champion Alberto Contador.

  71. 110km - Sam from London asks whether there has been "any news about riders being drug­ tested or rumours about riders taking drugs"? Well, thankfully this year's Tour has been without incident so far. However, the ongoing war of words between Floyd Landis and Lance Armstrong continues in the background. For the latest on this read this story.

  72. 112km - Thanks for your questions below. First up, Philip and John Barton watching in Cork,­ Ireland: the reason why Cancellara wears his 13 upside down is a mixture of Tour tradition and superstition. With 13 seen by many as an unlucky jinxed number, Tour riders through the ages have taken to turning it upside down, making it E1. Enjoy the race!

  73. 114km - At the summit of the Cote de l'Aubepin it's Pineau (4pts) who goes over first ahead of Knees (3pts) and Perez (2pts).

  74. 115km - Meanwhile, back in the peloton it's Saxo Bank who are setting the pace.

  75. 115km - The leading five riders are onto the third category Cote de l'Aubepin. All of them, except Pineau, have unzipped their shirts. Euskaltel's Perez is currently showing off the most chest.

  76. 117km - The fight wasn't the only incident at the finish line yesterday: Katusha's Robbie McEwen was knocked off his bike by a camera man just after taking fourth place. The Australian was livid and told Eurosport this morning how his Tour is now in jeopardy: "I feel terrible. One idiot jumped out while I was still doing 60k and it's just unacceptable. I'm really hurt. I've injured my lower back, shoulder and neck. I hope I can make it to the finish."

  77. 118km - It's pretty hot out there today. Lampre's Hondo has already undone his jersey to top up his chest tan. Meanwhile, Christian Knees - the man with the most religious legs in the peloton - pours water all over his head.

  78. 120km - Before the climbs start, why not check out all the latest news and features on our video page.

  79. 123km - Back to the Costa - Barredo fight: the pair were fined 400 Swiss Francs for the ugly spat. Apparently Costa had nudged Barredo in the ribs during yesterday's stage, almost knocking him off his bike. At the finish, the Spaniard decided to retaliate by hitting the Portuguese over the head with his wheel - which led to the handbags. Check it out for yourself in this video.

  80. 125km - Apologies for the time gaps given on the graphic above - our IT people are working on it and I can assure you that the gap is 8'20".

  81. 130km - The main talking point of the finish yesterday wasn't Mark Cavendish's brilliant second stage win - but a fist fight between Quick Step's Carlos Barredo and Caisse d'Epargne's Rui Costa. It certainly gave something for our cycling blogger Blazin' Saddles to talk about...

  82. - Today's route profile may look very up and down, but the six climbs are only fourth, third and second category and so we shouldn't see any big losses today amongst the general classification contenders. If you want to find out a bit more about the route today - and the history and geography of the area - then click here!

  83. 133km - The lead is growing at a ridiculously fast rate: it's now a huge 8 minutes. Christian Knees (Milram) is the best placed rider in the group, lying in 44th at 3'18". So, the German is in virtual yellow at the moment.

  84. 135km - At the first intermediate sprint of the day, Hondo (6pts) takes it from Dumoulin (4pts) and Perez (2pts). The lead is 6'30" which goes to show just how unconcerned the peloton are at this stage.

  85. 140km - Pineau is turning on the back of the group when he holds one nostral and snorts out the contents of the other one onto the road. Nice. They're working well together - the lead is over five minutes now.

  86. 143km - The stage is only young but already loads of the riders are pulling up for a call of nature. Too much orange juice at breakfast, guys?

  87. 145km - The lead has ballooned to a massive 3'30" now for the quintet up ahead. The roads are slightly undulating and very straight at the moment, with the foothills looming on the horizon. Pretty nice scenary all round - with a great turn out from the public.

  88. 150km - HTC-Columbia sprinter Mark Cavendish won yesterday's stage to make it two in a row and put those demons surrounding his form to bed good and proper. Saxo Bank's Fabian Cancellara retained his lead in the overall standings, 20 seconds ahead of Geraint Thomas and 39 seconds ahead of Cadel Evans. With six peaks on the agenda today, Evans could well be the maillot jaune tonight. General Classification

  89. 152km - For a full list of starters this morning, click here!

  90. 155km - The leading five riders have built up a lead of over a minute now: this break is clearly one to stay. Pineau obviously looking to consolidate his lead at the top of the mountains jersey. King of the Mountains classification

  91. 155km - It's a hot day in France with temperatures at 30 degrees celsius at the start in Tournus.

  92. 160km - ATTACK: Polka dot jersey Jerome Pineau of Quick Step breaks clear with a handful of riders - they are Christian Knees (Milram), Danilo Hondo (Lampre), Ruben Perez (Euskaltel) and Samuel Dumoulin (Cofidis).

  93. 162km - An early attack by five riders comes to nothing - there are going to be a few of those in these early moments of the stage...

  94. 165km - The race commissar has dropped his flag and they're off! Bring on the mountains...

  95. 12:00 - After a hectic first week the riders finally hit the hills today with six climbs in the Jura mountains before the finish in the Rousses ski station. The GC men will probably take it east but expect some attacks from anyone with polka dot jersey aspirations...

  96. 12:00 - Hello and welcome to stage seven of the Tour de France- a 165.5km undulating slog into the Jura mountains from Tournus to Station des Rousses.

 

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