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Watch: Tour de France Stage 11 video highlights

Martin James
12 Jul 2017

See how Marcel Kittel triumphed after Maciej Bodnar's solo bid for glory

Summary - Stage 11 - Tour de France 2017 by tourdefrance_en

On paper, there was little separating Stages 10 and 11 of the 2017 Tour de France, with both representing an opportunity for the sprinters to grab the headlines again after a day's recovery off the bike following the weekend's exertions in the mountains.

And so there was no real surprise to see Marcel Kittel in the green jersey again raise his arms in triumph as he crossed the line today at the end of Stage 11 in Pau, just as he had done 24 hours earlier in Bergerac.

But that is only half the story on a day that proved far more dramatic than it looked like being even up to an hour before the finish.

At that point, a break of three riders – Bodnar of Bora-Hansgrohe, Frederik Backaert (Wanty-Groupe Gobert) and Marco Marcato (UAE Team Emirates) – was in the process of being reeled in after having gone clear in the early kilometres and seeing a lead of a few minutes steadily whittled away by a peloton that looked totally in control of the day's proceedings.

Then, with 25km to go and the gap at under a minute, Bodnar shot clear of his companions and took up the fight on his own. A decent time-triallist, the Pole defied the peloton all the way into the final kilometre, even toying with them with the finish line in sight in a last-ditch bid to gain that tiny bit extra advantage that could have been enough for him to stay clear and claim a famous victory.

In the end it wasn't to be, and Kittel took stage win number 5 in this year's Tour. He'll have to be happy with that for now, as Stage 12 sees the Tour head back into the mountains with a gruelling 214.5km stage finishing at Peyragudes.