It was a happy end for the Garmin-Sharp team after the longest stage of the 99th Tour. After a few days of watching the climbers and GC specialists fight it out for victory and gains in the overall rankings, this was a day when the opportunists seized their chance. Millar was in a quintet that found themselves at the front of the stage after 100km of attacking action. Together with Jean-Christophe Peraud, Egoi Martinez, Robert Kiserlovski and Cyril Gautier, Millar worked up an an advantage of over 12 minutes on the peloton and that allowed the breakaway five to concentrate on the stage win and not worry about who was coming from behind. None of the quintet were a threat to Bradley Wiggins’ overall lead but there was a small display of strength from the race leader who put in a small surge on one of the early category-one climbs. Still, he ultimately rolled in with the peloton 7’54″ minutes behind his future Olympic team-mate and he keeps the yellow jersey for another day.
In the sprint to the line for sixth, Matt Goss beat Peter Sagan to the line meaning his deficit in the points classification would have been down to 22 points to Sagan but instead a sprint deviation meant he was relegated to seventh and docked 30 points, and is now 56 points behind. The commissaires deemed the Australian guilty of deviating from his line in the closing metres causing a visibly angry Sagan to shout and raise his arm in protest.
Goss later tweeted, “First relegation of my career…bit over the top I think. Especially the 30pts. Sorry for my Orica_GreenEDGE team mates who worked all day.”