Tour de France stage 14 LIVE: Carcassonne to Quillan

The Tour de France begins to make its way towards the Pyrenees with a tough 183.7km climbing route on stage 14

Hello and welcome to live coverage from stage 14 of the Tour de France 2021

Stage finish: 16.48 to 17.13 local time (15.48 to 16.13 UK)


Good morning - it's time for some climbing.

Here's the profile for today's stage which, while it doesn't include any mountain passes, will favour the punchy, attacking climbers and potentially a big breakaway group

If you missed yesterday's action (where were you??), then you can catch up with what happened here.

We've got an update on Simon Yates from yesterday. The British rider was brought down in a crash with 62km to go and was unable to finish the stage despite getting back on his bike.

We have another abandon this morning as well, Søren Kragh (DSM) won't take to the start  - he too was involved in that crash that Yates went down in

We're around 15 minutes from the start in Carcassonne, we're expecting a big fight for the breakaway early on

Wout van Aert is the bookies favourite today, followed closely by Julian Alaphilippe. Magnus Cort and Matej Mohoric are also amongst the favourites, but it all depends on who can make it into that key break.

Two minutes from the neutral start, with the flag drop set for 12.40

There's two very difficult looking climbs today, the category two ascents of the Col de Montsegur and the Col de Saint Louis (the final climb of the stage). Both are over 4km long, the first averaging 8.7% and the second 7.4%. The Col de Saint Louis has bonus seconds at the summit but if a breakaway gets away that will be fairly inconsequential. 

We've had another non-starter today - Warren Barguil. The Frenchman was also caught up in that crash yesterday and he is unable to start 

Bike problems for Geraint Thomas in the neutral start - he'll be able to get back to the bunch before the flag drop

We've crossed kilometre zero but the start is delayed as we wait for Ion Izagirre to return to the peloton after a puncture

The flag is waved and we have our first attacks

There's three riders off the front already but they're being chased down - this is going to happen for a while it looks like

Thomas De Gendt and Kasper Asgreen push on, but there's still no getting away from the bunch

There's still nothing doing for a breakaway as riders continue to attack with 177km to go

Tim Declerq (Deceuninck-Quick-Step) is struggling out the back of the peloton with this fast start. The Belgian went down hard yesterday and struggled in alone just before the time limit.

We have four riders with a descent gap now: Steven Kruijswijk (Jumbo-Visma), Simon Geschke (Cofidis), Fred Wright (Bahrain), and Thomas De Gendt (Lotto-Soudal), but they have riders approaching from behind

That leading four has now been pulled back and we have world champion Julian Alaphilippe active on the front for the first time today

Tim Declerq is really struggling here as he's cut adrift again at the rear of the bunch - he's going to really hope the break gets away soon and the pace settles down in the main peloton

A very active and fast start after the roll out from Carcassonne

Alaphilippe and stage seven winner Mohoric are away with Quentin Pacher, but once again it's being pulled back by other teams who a desperate to get in the breakaway

The leading trio have a 10-second advantage but the counter attacks from behind are flying now and it won't be long until other riders are able to bridge across

We're 161km from the finish which means we have around 30km to the first categorised climb of the day. Will the break be set by then?

Trek-Segafredo have pulled the peloton back to the breakaway and it's all together again

Geraint Thomas is showing some interest in getting in the breakaway, which is a good sign that the Welshman's condition is improving

Thomas De Gendt has gone from trying to get in the early moved to sitting at the rear of the bunch.

There's a slight lull in the action as riders catch their breath after a frantic start.

We have a solo breakaway at the moment, Kristian Sbaragli (Alpecin-Fenix) has a 34-second lead but is looking around and hoping others come and join him out front

There's now two riders Maxime Chevalier (B&B) and Anthony Turgis (TotalEnergies) trying to bridge across, but there's no reaction from the peloton which is all bunched together at the moment

Toms Skujins (Trek) is the next to try and get away from the bunch but he's got an Alpecin rider on his wheel who refuses to come through and help

With 153km to go, Sbaragli now has 1-50 on the peloton

The situation with 148km to go sees four chasers at 34 seconds behind lone leader Sbaragli, but we have action in the peloton at 1-13 with Kasper Asgreen leading the pursuit of the breakaway

Our chasers have now caught our lone leader and we have a five-man group out front at 38 seconds with 143.5km to go:

The peloton aren't quite letting this break go as teams as desperate to get away for a potential stage win. We're under 10km from the first categorised climb which may help some of the stronger climbers get away

The Col du Bac, the first climb is category three and is 3.1km long with an average gradient of 5.3%. After that we have around 35km until we start the first category two climb of the stage

The breakaway hit first climb with 40 seconds in hand

As expected there's attacks from the bunch on the climb to try and get to the break - Ide Schelling (Bora) is the first to try

This acceleration on the climb has put Tim Declerq in trouble once again. It's going to be a long day for him if it continues like this.

Mattia Cattaneo is the next to try from the peloton on the climb, with the break under a kilometre from the top of the first climb

Chris Froome is struggling with the pace with 132.7km to go. The attacks from the bunch have seen the gap drop quickly to only 15 seconds

Sbaragli takes the mountain points over the summit, but it looks like these five leaders will be caught on the descent

It's been a relentless start here and we've covered almost 50km now very quickly. The break has just 20 seconds with attacks still coming from the peloton

Some of the average speeds up the first climb were crazy fast, with TV showing Michael Woods averaged over 32kmh up the Col du Bac

There's a bike change for Bahrain's Pello Bilbao (10th overall), and he's chasing back onto the peloton, which is 24 seconds behind the five-man breakaway

There's a group of stragglers already after the first climb including Tim Declerq and Nacer Bouhanni. They're already over two minutes behind and are going to have a real fight on their hands getting to the finish in time if the pace continues at this rate

The bunch is all strung out with 117km to go but there's just no way anyone is getting away at the moment

The break is around 7km from the intermediate sprint and as it stands, there's almost all the green jersey contenders in the main peloton, so we may see the likes of Sonny Colbrelli and Michael Matthews jump clear to try and grab the remaining points after the five breakaway riders have gone through

With the sprint approaching however the gap is coming down now, it's just 18 seconds and we still have around 5km to the sprint point

There's a horrible false flat leading up to the sprint which will hamper the breakaway's efforts to stay away, but the gap is just about holding at 18 seconds

First signs of UAE coming to the front of the peloton - they will really want this relentless pace to stop so they can save some energy heading into the mountain stages, but they're going to find it hard to prevent attacks here.

The break look like they'll be caught here before the sprint point

The breakaway has been caught thanks to a big effort by Dries Devenyns (Deceuninck) who may try and take maximum points to help defend Cavendish's lead in green

Rickaert takes the maximum points with Devenyns in second at the intermediate sprint

Behind, Stefan Bissegger has had a crash and looks pretty banged up as he gets a new bike

It looks like Michael Matthews took seventh place and Sonny Colbrelli eighth at the intermediate sprint. So a few points there for each of them, but they still have a lot to do to catch Cavendish in green

So we're all together again with 104km to go. There'll no doubt be more and more attacks as we head towards the next climb 

Nibali has tried to go away but doesn't want to be going away solo. A group of about 25 riders have not got a gap but Intermarché wants to be up there too so they close the gap.

Poels, Rolland, Gesbert, Cattaneo, Fuglsang and I believe Zimmermann are the next to get away.

Woods is the next to join the attacking party with Chaves and Quintana kicking on after the Canadian with 97km to go.

Woods already dropping the Colombian duo who have gone back to the peloton. Looked like Van Aert was losing touch in the peloton too. 

Chaves try again with Meintjes and Fraile as UAE Team Emirates finally take control of the peloton. 

Woods makes it across to Cattaneo and Poels who now have 35 seconds on the pleoton. 

Woods tries a little move off the front with 1km to go on the climb. 

Guillaume Martin goes on the attack as well.

Oh I say that about Woods, Poels bridges across to him. 

I believe we have our break of the day with the best-placed being G. Martin being the best placed at 9-29.

Cattaneo has finally made it to Woods and Poels as we hit the next climb of the day. 

Rolland attacking from the peloton with his team-mate and local boy Pacher. They're going to try and bridge across the 2-00 gap with 78km to go.

Valentin Madouas and Élie Gesbert are the next duo to try and get up the road and they have been allowed to go.

Woods takes the points over the next climb just ahead of Poels with Cattaneo saving energy following in the wheels.

Michael Woods now level on points with Nairo Quintana for the mountains with 50 points with Wout Poels about 5 points behind. 

Following that category two climb, we now have the three leading riders coming together with the chasing group to form a strong looking 10-man breakaway. Here's who's there:

That group has 2-40 on the peloton with 67km to go, and are working well together to distance a group in between of four riders - Valentin Madouas (Groupama-FDJ), Elie Gesbert (Arkea), Pierre Rolland and Quentin Pacher (B&B) - who are at 46 seconds

There's still two more categorised climbs to come; the category three Côte de Galinagues which tops out with 57.5km to go, and the category two Col de Saint-Louis, which tops out with just 17km remaining

Onto the next climb and the two breakaway groups have come together to make a 14-man breakaway with 2-55 over the peloton

We're close to the top of this climb, but here's a of a reminder who is here:

Michael Woods attacks to try and take the mountains points with almost 300m to go, but Wout Poels comes from well back in the break to catch Woods and take the KoM points

Woods takes one point there and Poels takes two, which means the Canadian now leads the KoM standings by a single point over Nairo Quintana who is back in the peloton.

Here's that contest for the points on the last climb:

With UAE marshalling the front of the peloton it now definitely looks like this breakaway will decide the stage. They've now beat a lead of 3-45 with 52.5km to go.

Further down the road, Nacer Bouhanni is in the last group on the road at well over 18 minutes back. Tim Declerq, who was dropped on the first climb of the day after crashing yesterday, is now in the green jersey group which is going somewhat better at around 11 minutes down

On the long descent just past the 50km to go mark and Michael Woods has taken a tumble. He looks OK but is struggling to get back to the breakaway at the moment

There's no waiting for Woods after he slipped out on that corner - he's now at 13 seconds as Chaves pushes the pace on the downhill

Woods does not look comfortable on the descent now. He's never been the best at tackling the descents anyway and that crash will be a confidence knock

Bauke Mollema is attacking on the descent - there's still over 10km of downhill here before the road rises again.

Mollema has 15 seconds now heading into the final 40km. He'll want a smaller group heading on to the final climb of the day

Mollema is making a good fist of this and has built his advantage to 26 seconds. He's using a lot of energy though on his own 

It's full commitment from Mollema here, he's not waiting for anyone and his gap is slowly growing. The peloton is still at 4-32 with no sign of any action

We're about 11km from the next categorised climb where we'll surely see some attacks from the chasing breakaway. Mollema is at around 43 seconds in front right now. 

Mollema now has a minute on the chase group but the final climb of the Col de Saint-Louis which is 4.7km at an average of 7.4 per cent with very sharp kicks. I had it down as a potential key climb for the overall race. 31km to go with 5-00 to the peloton.

Guillaume Martin is suddenly up to second in the GC, it's now potentially up to EF Education-Nippo and Jumbo-Visma as they're taking over their podium spots.

Bauke Mollema hits the final climb of the Col de Saint-Louis. 12 per cent maximum gradient for everyone to battle.

Higuita, Konrad, Chaves, Woods, Gesbert and Meintjes have dropped the rest of the chasing break for the moment.

Alaphilippa, Colbrelli, Van Aert and Thomas all dropped from the peloton as UAE Team Emirates look to guide Pogačar up.

Mollema goes over the top of the climb now with 1-06 on the chasers with Konrad being forced to do all the work on the front of the chase group. 16km to go. 

Martin, Meintjes, Fraile, Pacher and Gesbert have just caught up with Chaves and are 1-26 behind Mollema and 22 seconds behind the first chase group.

Woods did take second over the top of that final climb meaning he will be wearing the polka dot jersey tomorrow as we head to Andorra. 

It looks like the Woods, Cattaneo, Higuita and Konrad group is going to be caught by the second chasing group on the road that are working very well together.

Back in the peloton, UAE Team Emirates are just controlling and rolling into the finish, so it looks all but confirmed that Martin will be in second in the overall.

Inside 2km to go for Mollema. Unless he crashes or gets a mechanical he will win this stage.

Flame Rouge for the flying Dutchman of Trek-Segafredo. Bauke Mollema has shown very impressive form throughout the race and it has come good today.

Bauke Mollema wins stage 14 of the Tour de France 2021

Photo finish for second between Konrad and Higuita 

Stage 14, Carcassonne to Quillan (183.7km)


The Dutchman attacked the breakaway on a descent with 42km to go and held off the chasers to claim his second career stage win at the Tour

The standings changes a little bit after today's stage in the GC and KoM standings. See what the changes are by reading out standings page! 

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