Tour de France 2015: Chris Froome wants more respect

Chris Froome crosses the finish line first after winning stage 10 of the 2015 Tour de France
Froome won stage 10 by 59 seconds from Team Sky colleague Richie Porte
Tour de France 2015
Dates: 4-26 July
BBC coverage: Live text commentary of every stage online and radio commentary on BBC 5 live sports extra or online from 14:45 BST

Tour de France leader Chris Froome wants more respect after again stressing he is a "clean rider" following a dominant stage-10 victory.

Team Sky claimed on Monday their computers had been hacked by critics convinced 30-year-old Froome is using performance-enhancing drugs.

Chris Froome on his way to winning stage 10 of the 2015 Tour de France
Froome broke clear with 6.4km of the 167km stage to go

Briton Froome said he "understood" why there are doubts because of the "history of the sport".

Tuesday's stunning ride increased his overall lead to nearly three minutes.

Froome plans to be independently tested between the Tour's finish and the Vuelta a Espana, which begins on 22 August, to try to determine what makes him such an exceptional athlete.

"I do understand where the questions are coming from, the history of the sport and the people before me who have won the Tour," said Froome.

"I am sympathetic, but at the same time there needs to be a certain level of respect also."

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Froome has been subjected to sustained scrutiny since his Tour win in 2013, with some sceptics using power data to justify their case against him.

"It doesn't make me angry," added Froome. "It would be a different story if I had something to hide.

"I know I've worked extremely hard to be in this position."

Froome said he has tried to be a spokesman for clean cycling, suggesting night-time testing and raising concerns to the sport's governing bodies.

He said: "What else is a clean rider supposed to do?"

Former GB cyclist Rob Hayles on the data hacking claims
"The data is taken from power cranks on the bike and measures power in watts - like lighting a light blub - and shows how much power Froome is producing."Whether you are in a head wind or a tail wind, power is power, it negates everything else."A lot of people think they can read between the lines with this, but I think they're barking up the wrong tree."

Froome added that critics on social media who try to interpret power data are "clowns", adding that it means nothing without context.

Team Sky boss Sir Dave Brailsford had said even before Froome's 10th-stage win - the fifth stage victory of his career - he was braced for more questions over doping.

"It's part of the game, isn't it?" he added. "If he does well on Tuesday, the rest of the Tour it's: 'How do you know he's not doping?'

"The question of how to prove a negative is always going to be a difficult one.

"I used to worry about it a lot more, but I don't any more. It's part of the game. Just try to be honest, tell the truth, be open."

The Team Sky rider is now well positioned to secure a second win after powering away from the field on the first major climb of this year's race to open up a substantial lead at the head of the standings.

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