Sunday, July 16

TdF: Stage 14

The 180.5K fourteenth stage of the Tour de France was difficult and dangerous. Three different crashes shook up the entire peloton--and actually knocked Rik Verbrugghe of Belgium, David Canada of Spain, Magnus Backstedt of Sweden, and Mirko Celestino Italy out of the race.

Pierrick Fedrigo outsprinted breakaway companion Salvatore Commesso at the finish to hand France its third stage victory in the Tour. Oscar Pereiro held on to the yellow jersey--with Floyd Landis nipping at his heels, just 1:29 behind. At 15th, Levi Leipheimer is 07:08 back. And at 38th, George Hincapie is 24:28 back.

Tomorrow is a rest day. And then the decisive part of the Tour really begins with three days of tough climbing--and an anticipated battle for the yellow jersey--as the peloton rides into the Alps.

The overall standings remain:

1. Oscar Pereiro (Spain)
2. Floyd Landis (USA)
3. Cyril Dessel (France)
4. Denis Menchov (Russia)
5. Cadel Evans (Australia)
6. Carlos Sastre (Spain)
7. Andreas Kloden (Germany
8. Michael Rogers (Australia)
9. Juan Miguel Mercado (Spain)
10. Christophe Moreau (France)