Chris Froome conserves energy for crucial double-header as Briton retains Tour de France lead

 
Frank Dalleres
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Froome finished in the peloton on stage 10 to retain the yellow jersey (Source: Getty)

Britain's Chris Froome concedes he is keeping his powder dry for two crucial stages later this week after preserving his 16-second lead at the Tour de France on Tuesday.

Froome finished safely in the peloton, more than nine minutes behind Australian Michael Matthews, who pipped Peter Sagan and Edvald Boasson Hagen in a sprint finish to stage 10 in Revel.

The defending champion is hoping for another uneventful ride from Carcassonne to Montpellier on Wednesday as he steels himself for a battle between the yellow jersey favourites on the fearsome Mont Ventoux on Thursday and a key time trial 24 hours later.

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“We’re hoping for another similar day. Just another day we can tick off and get through hopefully without too much happening,” the Team Sky rider said.

“Ventoux is the next big thing we’ve got our sights on now. It’s going to be such a big stage and then to back it up there’s the first time trial the day afterwards. That will be in the back of the mind too.”

Fellow Briton Adam Yates of Orica-BikeExchange remains second overall and in the white jersey for the best young rider while Irishman Dan Martin of Etixx – Quick-Step lies third, a further three seconds adrift.

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