Initially, Froome was distanced but didn’t panic and, when the gradient lessened, pedalled his way across the gap and eventually out-sprinted his most unsafe rival at the finish, which was held on the runway of Mende Aerodrome.

Tour de France 2015 Standings were in question today coming into this massive assent to Mende.

Twice he accelerated clear, first with reigning champion Vincenzo Nibali chasing him down.

“I had some team-mates around me, they also saw the incident”.

The BMC leader lost 39 seconds to Quintana and 40 to Froome.

Froome insisted he was unaware of reports Team Sky had asked for heightened security and was adamant nothing would distract him from his focus on the race.

“He ended with more time on second place, which is great”.

“A spectator about 50-60km into the race threw a cup of urine over me, shouting ‘dope, ‘” Froome told reporters.

“The attacks started pretty quickly in the climb”.

“In a stage like (Friday’s) when it’s not necessarily a bunch sprint or GC (general classification) day, everyone wants to be up there”, said the 30-year-old Team Sky leader. “The guys started panicking that they weren’t going to catch the breakaway”.

Greg Van Avermaet finally banished his demons but Peter Sagan’s frustrating two-year wait for a Tour de France stage win continues following yesterday’s 13th stage. The Alpine stages next week will determine the victor of this year’s Tour.

“I just time trialled the last climb, I just did my own pace”, he said, speaking about how he tackled the ferociously steep ascent.

“I tried to go nearly from the bottom”.

Chris Froome was drenched in urine and called a “doper” in extending his Tour de France lead – before he hit out at irresponsible coverage of his dominant performance.

Six riders formed the day’s breakaway, with Degenkolb’s Giant-Alpecin and Sagan’s Tinkoff-Saxo squads pulling on the front of the peloton.

Qhubeka is a word from the language of the Nguni people of southern Africa that means “to carry on”, “to progress”, “to move forward”.

MTN-Qhubeka were chosen as the first African team to appear in the Tour de France they were given one of the five wildcard places back in January.

“I certainly wouldn’t blame the public for this, it really is the minority of the people out there ruining it for everyone else out here”.

“The dream goal was just to be here”. It looked like the duel between the next generation of French riders would prevail, but Cummings seemed to come out of nowhere at the crest of the hill, and took off around two curves, speeding down to the finish which was placed on an airport runway.

It was not such a good day for Bretagne Seche Environment’s Eduardo Sepulveda. The French leader of the AG2R La Mondiale team gingerly picked himself up and remounted, gritting his teeth.

Tour rules do not allow any rider to be driven during a route and so the Argentine has been thrown off the Tour.