Geraint Thomas is in the flawless position to win a maiden grand tour title after claiming victory on Wednesday's first mountain stage of the Tour de France, but the Briton says compatriot Chris Froome remains the Team Sky leader.
Fellow Brit Geraint Thomas retained the Yellow Jersey with his second consecutive victory, but Froome made the headlines for reason he'd rather not on a day marred by multiple ugly clashes with unruly fans which ultimately resulted in former champion Vincenzo Nibali suffering a broken vertebrae.
Team Sky's Thomas, who won the Criterium du Dauphine last month, attacked near the end of the 11th stage. "Legend gets used way too much but he's probably the best ever so I'm just going to enjoy this".
"I'm not happy. I wanted to win today".
"Since the start of the race I've been saying that Thomas is the strongest at Sky".
The Belgian rider was joined in the lead by fellow General Classification contender Philippe Gilbert and green jersey leader Peter Sagan but Team Sky riders Geraint Thomas and Chris Froome remained behind. Thomas has been one of Froome's most loyal lieutenants for years and Sky labeled him a co-leader with Froome entering this year's Tour.
"In my eyes, Froomey is still our leader", said Thomas.
"I saw a massive occasion to take the yellow jersey. But it's just fortunate that we were ok".
Landa, Bardet, Froome and Dumoulin all tried moves off the front as the ski resort came into view, but they were all together on the final bend before Thomas burst forward.
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"Don't touch the riders, let us race, don't spit at us, have a bit of decency".
Thomas now leads a Team Sky one-two in the overall standings, 85 seconds ahead of four-time Tour victor Chris Froome, as the three-week Grand Tour passed the halfway mark.
Rigoberto Uran, who finished second overall past year, did not start the stage as the effects of a stage nine crash caught up with him.
Twice an Olympic gold medal victor on the track, Thomas now leads his team leader by one minute and 39 seconds, with Dumoulin a further 11 seconds back.
Alfilip boldly attacked throughout the stage, dotted with three ascents of the highest and first categories.
A couple of metres later, Chris Froome (Sky) attacked, caught Bardet and kept going on his own.
Thomas maintained that Froome was still "the man" who knows how to win three-week races.
Froome attacked with 3.5 kilometers to go and passed longtime leader Steven Kruijswik.