Italy's Matteo Trentin wins 14th stage of Tour de France cycling race
Yellow-jersey holder Froome keeps powder dry for today's tough mountan challenge
Omega-Pharma's Matteo Trentin handed Italy its maiden win of the 100th Tour de France when he beat Michael Albasini and Andrew Talansky in a sprint finish at the end of an entertaining 14th stage yesterday.
Britain's yellow-jersey holder Chris Froome, of Team Sky, came over the finish line with the main peloton and his chief rivals just over seven minutes adrift.
Froome did not come under attack during the undulating 191-kilometre ride from Saint-Pourcain-sur-Sioule to Lyon and still leads Dutchman Bauke Mollema (Belkin) by two minutes and 28 seconds and Spain's former two-time winner Alberto Contador (Saxo) by 2:45.
A day after Froome and several leading challengers lost 1:09 to key rivals Contador and Mollema, the contenders for overall victory kept their powder dry ahead of today's first summit finish at Mont Ventoux.
Although Froome would love to win atop one of the race's legendary climbs, he said his priority was stretching his lead. "I'm totally focused on the general classification, but it would be a dream to win at Mont Ventoux," said Froome, who won on the only previous summit finish at Ax-Trois-Domaines on stage eight. "I have been up there. I'm really glad I have seen it because it's a really tough climb."
Trentin's win means Omega-Pharma now have four stage wins following victories by British sprinter Mark Cavendish (two) and German Tony Martin.
"When you work alongside a rider like Cavendish, you learn a thing or two. I just waited patiently and unleashed my sprint with 100 [metres] to go," said Trentin.