• Tour de France, Stage 15

Fedrigo wins as Wiggins retains yellow

ESPN staff
July 16, 2012

Bradley Wiggins enjoyed a comfortable day in the yellow jersey with no challenges to his lead as Pierrick Fedrigo won Stage 15 of the Tour de France.

Fedrigo fended off Christian Vande Velde in a sprint finish from a breakaway group of six, but with none of Wiggins' rivals threatening to make a charge, Team Sky were content to dictate a comfortable pace at the front of the peloton.

With a rest day on Tuesday, the rolling 158 kilometre route between Samatan and Pau was an opportunity for Mark Cavendish to stake his claim for the green jersey with a bunch finish likely, but Team Sky opted not to chase down the escapees, the peloton crossing the line nearly 12 minutes after the frontrunners.

"We started racing a little bit but it was always with hope that someone would come up and assist - Lotto or Green Edge - but it became apparent they didn't want to ride so we called it off," Wiggins said.

"It was nice that we could just control the rest of the day and come into Pau looking forward to the rest day. The whole race is tired so I think everyone is just looking forward to having a bit of down time before we get the last couple of days underway."

Thomas Voeckler, who led for much of last year's Tour, was in the breakaway group of six, but he was forced to settle for third as Fedrigo and Vande Velde made their move with seven kilometres remaining.

Heading into the final straight, Fedrigo sat at the front, waiting for Vande Velde to attack, but the American could not find the acceleration as the 33-year-old claimed his fourth Tour stage win, two years after his last, also in Pau.

Voeckler outsprinted Nicki Sorensen for third, while Andre Greipel fired a warning to sprint rival Peter Sagan as he outkicked the green jersey holder as the main group crossed the line 11 minutes and 50 seconds after the winner.

Stage 15 result
1 Pierrick Fedrigo (FRA) FDJ-Big Mat - 03:36:34
2 Christian Vande Velde (USA) Garmin - 0:00
3 Thomas Voeckler (FRA) Europcar - 00:12
4 Nicki Sorensen (DEN) Team Saxo Bank - Tinkoff Bank - 00:12
5 Dries Devenyns (BEL) Omega Pharma-Quickstep - 00:21
6 Samuel Dumoulin (FRA) Cofidis - 01:08
7 Andre Greipel (GER) Lotto-Belisol - 0:11:50
8 Tyler Farrar (USA) Garmin - Sharp - 0:11:50
9 Peter Sagan (SVK) Liquigas-Cannondale - 0:11:50
10 Kris Boeckmans (BEL) Vacansoleil-DCM - 0:11:50

General classification
1 Bradley Wiggins (GBR) Sky Procycling - 68:33:21
2 Christopher Froome (GBR) Sky Procycling - 0:02:05
3 Vincenzo Nibali (ITA) Liquigas-Cannondale - 0:02:23
4 Cadel Evans (AUS) BMC Racing Team - 0:03:19
5 Jurgen Van Den Broeck (BEL) Lotto Belisol Team - 0:04:48
6 Haimar Zubeldia Agirre (ESP) RadioShack-Nissan - 0:06:15
7 Tejay van Garderen (USA) BMC Racing - 0:06:57
8 Janez Brajkovic (SLO) Astana - 0:07:30
9 Pierre Rolland (FRA) Europcar - 0:08:31
10 Thibaut Pinot (FRA) FDJ-Big Mat 0:08:51

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