Geschke wins Stage 17 as Froome stays on top

Pra-Loup: Nairo Quintana repeatedly tested Tour de France leader Chris Froome as German Simon Geschke won yesterday's 161km 17th stage from Digne-les-Bains to Pra Loup.

Simon Geschke celebrates as he crosses the finish line yesterday
Simon Geschke celebrates as he crosses the finish line yesterday 

Quintana first accelerated inside the opening 50km, again on the imposing Col d'Allos and then had two more goes on the final 6.2km climb to the finish. Froome responded every time and crossed the line just behind the Colombian to keep his 3min 10sec lead in the race for the yellow jersey.

Van Garderen quits
However, it was a disastrous day for some of their rivals on the 2015 Tour's first Alpine stage. Tejay Van Garderen, who started the day third, quit the race with 70km remaining following an illness that had seen him dropped by the peloton.

Alberto Contador, who was virtually up to fourth at that stage, crashed ahead of the final climb and lost 2min 17sec to Froome.

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