Dan Martin’s Tour Diary, Day 13: Wrong for teams to profit from rivals’ misfortune
A day like this in the wind shows that anything can happen
Team Saxo-Tinkoff drives the pace at the head of the group during stage 13 of the Tour de France. Their teamwork was impressive in the day’s final break. Photograph: Bryn Lennon/Getty Images
What a day. That must have looked entertaining on the television.
Stage 13 was supposed to be a stage where nothing much happened, but there were crosswinds all day which broke things up. We expected a bit of action but it came very early in the stage and caught people by surprise.
He had started the day second overall and the Belkin team - who had Bauke Mollema in third and Laurens Ten Dam in sixth – decided to put their full team at the front to take advantage of that misfortune.
I’m not really happy with that – I don’t agree with attacking when your rivals encounter bad luck. If Valverde and his team couldn’t get back up to the group with just the Omega Pharma Quick Step team riding on the front, fair enough, but the Belkin team joining in really did put him and his team-mate Rui Costa out of the reckoning.
It shows what can happen at the Tour de France. That is partly why I am not saying at this point that I am going to ride for the general classification. Anything can happen.
Some people were saying afterwards that Movistar had taken advantage of the bad luck of others in the past. I don’t know about that. I would hope it doesn’t stay that long in the minds of people. But we are lucky to be in a team that enjoys quite good karma. We have a lot of friends in the peloton.
My Garmin-Sharp team-mates Jack Bauer and Ramunas Navardauskas were unbelievable on the stage. They rode in the wind for me the whole time. It made my day easy. I felt really fresh at the finish, really good.
I also feel that my legs are coming around again after the efforts I made to take the stage win last Sunday.
In some ways it was unfortunate that I was a little bit back from the front when the Saxo Tinkoff team put the hammer down inside the final 35 kilometres and caused the second split.
My cousin Nicolas Roche was one of those involved – it’s a pity he didn’t tip me off!
However, it would have been really hard up there – those guys out front had a really hard ride to the finish.