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Summary

  1. Marcel Kittel win his fifth stage of 2017 Tour de France
  2. GB's Chris Froome retains overall lead
  3. Eymet - Pau, 203.5km

Live Reporting

By Jack Skelton

All times stated are UK

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Thanks and farewell

Well after a rather unremarkable day that turned into a frantic finish.

You have to feel for Maciej Bodnar, it would've been a wonderful story for him to stay away all day and win.

But Marcel Kittel is writing his own stunning story here. A fifth stage win and the green jersey firmly in his grasp.

Chris Froome still in yellow. You can read all about it here.

Catch you tomorrow.

Froome stays in yellow

Chris Froome eased in and will pull on his 51st yellow jersey shortly.

Here are the top five on GC:

  1. Chris Froome (GB/Sky) 47hrs 01min 55secs
  2. Fabio Aru (Ita/Astana) +18secs
  3. Romain Bardet (Fra/AG2R) +51secs
  4. Rigoberto Uran (Col/Cannondale-Drapac) +55secs
  5. Jakob Fuglsang (Den/Astana) +1min 37secs

Maciej Bodnar, speaking to ITV4, after being caught late on: "I am disappointed because I was caught in the last 250m and it was my best day and I wanted to win for my team, for Peter Sagan and my dad who died two months ago.

"I was sprinting out of the corners. The last 20km was my best time trial.

"I'm not happy about today. I can be happy about my legs but not about the result.

"After 200km in the break and then you have 200m left...well, you know how I feel."

Top Five

There was, by the way, yet another impressive sprint from Britain's Dan McLay today as he came home in fifth. Here's the top five:

  1. Marcel Kittel (Ger/Quick-Step)
  2. Dylan Groenewegen (Ned/LottoNL-Jumbo)
  3. Edvald Boasson Hagen (Nor/Team Dimension Data)
  4. Michael Matthews (Aus/Sunweb)
  5. Dan McLay (GB/Fortuneo-Vital Concept)
Marcel Kittel celebrates
Getty Images

Here's stage winner Marcel Kittel: "It's incredible because when you're on the top level as a sprinter, it's like playing tetris and you're just trying to find the gaps.

"I've not made a mistake and today agian I could just jump from wheel to wheel.

"It's really ince to give the team a victory because Jack Bauer, Julien Vermote and Philippe Gilbert all worked today. They're champions and they're killing it for me.

"It's perfect at the moment. The race [for the green jersey] is not over but I've used all my chances that I've got so far."

Chris Froome did indeed have the unremarkable day he was looking for and finished safely in the bunch.

The Briton remains 18 seconds clear of Fabio Aru in second and 51 seconds ahead of Romain Bardet in third.

Job done and onto the Pyrenees tomorrow.

With the first stage being a time trial, that means the Tour has had 10 mass start stages so far and Marcel Kittel has won half of them.

OK, so Mark Cavendish and Peter Sagan are out, as is Arnaud Demare, but that is still remarkable dominance. The Quick-Step sprinter looks unbeatable and there a few more chances left - mainly the final stage on the Champs Elysees.

Kittel wins his fifth stage

A word for Bora's Maciej Bodnar, having been out front for 203.3km of a 203.5km stage.

Those last 200m are sadly all that matters, though, and the Pole was swept up ruthlessly by a surging peloton.

And when a peloton sprints like that in this Tour, there is no other result than a Marcel Kittel victory.

BreakingKITTEL WINS STAGE 11

Marcel Kittel celebrates
Getty Images

Marcel Kittel claims his fifth stage win of this Tour. Dominance.

The German comes from a fair way back but just has so much power that he easily reels in Edvald Boasson Hagen and Michael Matthews on their left and even has enough time to coast over the line with his arm aloft.

Dylan Groenewegen does well to hug Kittel's wheel for as long as possible and finish second, with Boasson Hagen third.

Bodnar caught

Fabio Sabatini reels in Maciej Bodnar.

Here comes the sprint...

1km to go

Bodnar still leads

Bodnar takes the flamme rogue signalling 1km to go by himself.

Surely he can't do this? Can he?

1.5km to go

Zdenek Stybar hits the front for Quick-Step. A fifth win for Marcel Kittel beckons?

2km to go

Bodnar leads by five seconds

Into the final 2km but brave Bodnar has barely any advantage left. The peloton can see him clearly now on the wide, straight roads of Pau.

Bodnar has just 10 seconds. He'll be swept up soon.

3km to go

Bodnar leads by 15 seconds

Right, Marcel Kittel is up there now and Quick-Step are locked in, their lead-out men hitting the front.

Oh no, Bodnar has started to look round. This one could be over very quickly for the Pole.

4km to go

Bodnar leads by 18 seconds

Bodnar finally gets back into a bit of road furniture and a few turns, looking to stay out of sight of the charging peloton.

5km to go

Bodnar leads by 21 seconds

Tony Martin hits the front for Katusha, perhaps setting it up for Alexander Kristoff.

The four-time world time trial champion's effort is brief but good enough to cut the gap down to 21 seconds to Maciej Bodnar out front.

6km to go

Bodnar leads by 28 seconds

Real signs of worry in the peloton but it's translated into the gap coming down under 30 seconds.

Bodnar looks in pain as he goes deep, grimacing and staring down at his stem.

7km to go

Bodnar leads by 33 seconds

The peloton is being drive by Quick-Step, with former world champion Philippe Gilbert doing some massive turns for his sprinter Marcel Kittel.

Julien Vermote hits the front yet again as Gilbert peels off, exhausted. Vermote has been a powerhouse in this Tour.

8km to go

Bodnar leads by 36 seconds

A long straight road now, which is exactly what Bodnar doesn't want as the peloton will be able to better gauge the distance to him.

He's nailing this, though, and the advantage just isn't coming down yet.

10km to go

Bodnar leads by 39 seconds

Bodnar is now onto a descent, able to take a brief break from pedalling, as he swings through the 10km to go flag.

The Pole leads by 39 seconds still. The peloton now onto the descent, looking to eat into the advantage soon.

This is tremendous from Maciej Bodnar, drawing on all of his time-trialling abilities to hold off a charging peloton.

He's approaching the final 10km and still has a gap of 39 seconds.

Can he pull this off?

There are two Quick-Step riders out front, setting the tempo, with Lotto Soudal in behind.

Their minds will be on the sprint, but Team Sky are in third, again ensuring that Chris Froome is kept out of any potential danger.

Bodnar is being helped by the infrastructure of the run-in to Pau, with plenty of turns and roundabouts that allow the Bora rider to move out of view of the peloton.

He's still got a lead of 42 seconds with under 13km to go.

15km to go

Maciej Bodnar rides at the front
Getty Images

Bodnar still riding strongly off the front, holding an advantage of 49 seconds with 15km to go.

Lotto Soudal and Quick-Step are ratcheting up the pace behind for their sprinters Andre Greipel and Marcel Kittel respectively.

Contador back on

Contador has bridged the gap, thanks in no little part to Pantano, who turned his bike around and rode back to do pacing duties for the Spaniard.

The former champion has fallen to 12th overall and I can't help wondering whether he'd be better losing more time so he'd be allowed to go up the road later on and challenge for a stage.

Contador is a proud rider, though, and clearly hasn't given up on the overall yet as he surges back on to the end of the peloton.

Problems for GC riders Jakob Fuglsang, Romain Bardet and Alberto Contador today.

No such issues for Chris Froome, who has been nestled nicely in the main peloton, protected by his Sky team-mate all day.

Barely seen the yellow jersey on the TV feed, which is exactly what he wants on a stage like this.

Crash for Contador

Gogl is very slow to get going again so Jarlinson Pantano has dropped back to pace Alberto Contador back to the bunch.

Bodnar has 48 seconds with 18km to go.

Contador down

The two-time champion has crashed with 22km to go.

He went down with team-mate Michael Gogl. Touch and go whether they'll see the peloton again today.

A mad chase back through the cars to come.

25km to go

Bodnar has 25km to hang on solo. The Bora rider is flying - taking his advantage over the main peloton over a minute.

The bunch will be happy to just be chasing one man, however.

Former breakaway rider Marcato has just been caught and Backaert is then also reeled in.

Bodnar attacks

Maciej Bodnar has left his breakaway pals Frederik Backaert and Marco Marcato by shooting up the road.

They only had a gap of 24 seconds or so, hence the Polish rider striking out alone.

He's an accomplished time trial rider but this would be a miraculous effort to stave off the peloton.

The finish line

Here's what awaits the peloton in Pau...

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30km to go

The race is ramping up slightly. The three-man breakaway now have a gap of just 30 seconds with 30km to go.

An Astana sporting director has told French television that Jakob Fuglsang is riding with a wrist injury and the team will assess the damage after the end of the stage.

The Dane - who is currently fifth overall - broke his left scaphoid five years ago.

Having lost Dario Cataldo today, Astana will be desperately hoping their senior rider is OK.

The riders are approaching four hours in the saddle.

Apart from a couple of spills, probably the four most straightforward hours of the Tour so far.

Things will ratchet up as they close on Pau, though.

The break is holding at 53 seconds out front.

The peloton rides
Getty Images

We're approaching 40km to go and the gap to the breakaway is down under a minute.

The peloton could catch Backaert, Bodnar and Marcato soon or leave them dangling out there for a while.

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Viel Richardson: Why do a few racers always shoot off up the road on every stage, knowing they are going to be caught?

Two main reasons. Firstly, a lot of those riders tend to be on smaller teams who benefit from the increased TV coverage afforded to the team and its sponsors, with the cameras focusing on their rider all day, instead of being lost in the bunch.

Secondly, especially in sprint stages those riders would have almost zero chance of winning the stage in a bunch sprint because they're not fast enough. If they go out in the breakaway that might only increase their chance of winning by a few % but at least it's a few % more than nothing. Basically it's worth gambling that the peloton might make a mistake and leave it too late.

Then there are also riders like Steve Cummings and Tommy Voeckler who are strong and crafty and go up the road to try and out-fox the peloton, gaining enough of a gap so they aren't caught in time and claim the stage from a smaller, select group.

Poor Arthur Vichot is back at the medical car again, having plenty of spray applied to his knee.

Romain Bardet had to change his bike following his spill.

50km to go

Marco Marcato (Team UAE Emirates), Frederik Backaert (Wanty-Groupe Gobert) and Maciej Bodnar (Bora) have a gap of 1'34'' with 50km left.

Bardet back on

Right, it does appear that Romain Bardet has spent some time on the deck.

The AG2R leader is just about to rejoin the back of the peloton, flanked by a few team-mates.

Doesn't appear to be any tears in the Frenchman's jersey so not a major smash.

Arthur Vichot is also on his compatriot's tail after spending some time back at the medical car following his crash.