Tuesday, July 20, 2010
STAGE 16: ONE MORE FOR THE FRENCH
Today it was Pierrick Fedrigo's turn to cross the finish line first among an impressive breakaway group of 8 that included one Lance Armstrong and fellow American and Radioshack compatriot Chris Horner.
Armstrong orchestrated and led the breakaway group over the highest category Tourmalet and on into Pau. The group finished together more than six minutes ahead of a strung-out peloton.
Armstrong's strength in the breakaway and power on these steps erased questions about whether or not the old man still had it in him for mountains like the Pyrenees.
Alberto Contador and Andy Schleck marked one another and there was no change in the top five standings at the end of stage 16.
Fireworks await, however Thursday's stage 17. Tuesday's rest day is the lull before the storm. It is very likely the championship of the 2010 Tour de France will be settled on the second and steeper climb to Tourmalet.