- Tour de France, Stage Nine
Froome retains yellow jersey
Chris Froome has retained the yellow jersey heading into the first rest day of the Tour de France - with Dan Martin taking victory on Stage Nine.
The Team Sky rider encountered waves of attacks on the 168.5km stretch from Saint-Girons to Bagneres-de-Bigorre, which involved four category one climbs, but was able to fend off the challenges to ensure he ends the first part of Le Tour on top of the standings.
Froome has a one minute and 25 second lead over Alejandro Valverde, who moved up to second in the general classification after Froome's team-mate Richie Porte, the rider who originally occupied that spot, disappeared along with many others of Team Sky earlier in the day.
Valverde along with Nairo Quintana were the riders who threatened to wrestle the yellow jersey off Froome. However, the Brit was able to survive the attacks and was the greater victor on the day, and at the end of Stage Nine it was Martin who had the pace over Jakob Fuglsang to collect the victory.
"We've got a great team here but we have had a really hard day today. There's a rest day tomorrow and we'll definitely soak that up and come out again in force, hopefully, on Tuesday," Froome said.
"That was really one of the hardest days that I've ever had on a bike but I'm just happy to still be in the yellow jersey. My team-mates made a huge effort yesterday and I think they were just paying for that effort today a bit.
"I was a little bit exposed there in the front group but I felt like I was riding quite within myself and I was happy that I was able to follow the biggest challenges."
Stage Nine result
1. Daniel Martin (Irl) Garmin-Sharp 4hr 43min 03sec
2. Jakob Fuglsang (Den) Astana Pro Team
3. Michal Kwiatkowski (Pol) Omega Pharma-Quick Step +20sec
4. Daniel Moreno Fernandez (Spa) Katusha
5. Joaquim Rodriguez Oliver (Spa) Katusha
6. Cadel Evans (Aus) BMC Racing Team
7. Wouter Poels (Ned) Vacansoleil-DCM Pro Cycling Team
8. Bauke Mollema (Ned) Belkin Pro Cycling Team
9. Daniel Navarro Garcia (Spa) Cofidis, Solutions Credits
10. Maxime Monfort (Bel) RadioShack Leopard
1. Christopher Froome (GBr) Sky Procycling 36hr 59min 18sec
2. Alejandro Valverde Belmonte (Spa) Movistar Team +1 min 25sec
3. Bauke Mollema (Ned) Belkin Pro Cycling Team +1min 44sec
4. Laurens Ten Dam (Ned) Belkin Pro Cycling Team +1min 50sec
5. Roman Kreuziger (Cze) Team Saxo-Tinkoff +1min 51sec
6. Alberto Contador Velasco (Spa) Team Saxo-Tinkoff
7. Nairo Alexander Quintana Rojas (Col) Movistar Team +2min 02sec
8. Daniel Martin (Irl) Garmin-Sharp +2min 28sec
9. Joaquim Rodriguez Oliver (Spa) Katusha +2min 31sec
10. Rui Alberto Faria Da Costa (Por) Movistar Team +2min 45sec