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Summary

  1. Stage 12: Pau-Peyragudes, 214.5km
  2. Romain Bardet sprints clear to win stage 12
  3. Chris Froome slips to second as Fabio Aru takes lead
  4. Froome cracks on brutal final climb to finish
  5. Commentary on BBC Radio 5 live sports extra from 14:00 BST

Live Reporting

By Jack Skelton

All times stated are UK

Farewell

What a day.

A day that looked like Team Sky had shut everything down and delivered Chris Froome to yet another yellow jersey.

But his rivals had other ideas - Romain Bardet taking the stage, Fabio Aru taking yellow.

A word too for Steve Cummings, who attacked bravely on the 50th anniversary of Tom Simpson's death.

This Tour suddenly became a bit of a thriller.

Catch you tomorrow, when Froome's rivals will surely look to attack again.

Chris Froome has held the yellow jersey since stage four but he won't be part of the podium celebrations today.

Instead, Astana's Fabio Aru will pull on the maillot jaune shortly.

Although the Italian is the new race leader, it's perhaps an even better day for stage winner Romain Bardet, who has just left the stage.

Bardet is just 25 seconds behind now and his AG2R team are looking strong, while Astana have been hit by injuries.

For now though, a superb effort from Aru.

'I gave it my all' - Cummings

Prior to that remarkable finish to the stage, it looked like British champion Steve Cummings could pull off the most impressive victory of his career as he led up the penultimate climb.

Ultimately, the power of the group behind, drive by Team Sky, told.

Here's Cummings, speaking to ITV4: "I thought it was a bit beyond me this morning but you never know - I wanted to try and probably needed six minutes at the bottom of the Peyresourde.

"I gave it my all but its quite nice being in front to cross the climbs alone, it's a good feeling.

"I managed to get in the break without much dificulty, it was a good combination, everyone was rolling through but it was just the length of the stage and Team Sky kept the gap quite low.

"I'm surprise Froome has lost yellow but it's still very close and there's a lot of racing to be done. It's bike racing - anything can happen."

Top 10 on general classification

  1. Fabio Aru (Ita/Astana) 52hrs 51minutes 49secs
  2. Chris Froome (GB/Team Sky) +6secs
  3. Romain Bardet (Fra/AG2R) +25secs
  4. Rigoberto Uran (Col/Cannondale) +35secs
  5. Dan Martin (Ire/Quick-Step) +1min 41secs
  6. Simon Yates (GB/Orica) +2min 13secs
  7. Mikel Landa (Spa/Team Sky) +2min 55secs
  8. Nairo Quintana (Col/Movistar) +4min 01sec
  9. George Bennett (NZ/LottoNL-Jumbo) +4min 04secs
  10. Louis Meintjes (SA/Team UAE Emirates) +4min 51secs

Top 10 on Stage 12

  1. Romain Bardet (Fra/AG2R) 5hrs 49mins 38secs
  2. Rigoberto Uran (Col/Cannondale) +2sec
  3. Fabio Aru (Ita/Astana) Same time
  4. Mikel Landa (GB/Sky) +5secs
  5. Louis Meintjes (SA/Team UAE Emirates) +7secs
  6. Dan Martin (Ire/Quick-Step) +13secs
  7. Chris Froome (GB/Team Sky) +22secs
  8. George Bennett (NZ/LottoNL-Jumbo) +27secs
  9. Simon Yates (GB/Orica) Same time
  10. Mikel Nieve (Spa/Team Sky) +1min 28secs

For all Team Sky's dominance over the Porte de Bales and Col de Peyresourde, when it came to the final climb Chris Froome simply did not have the kick to stay with his rivals.

His team-mate Mikel Landa actually looked stronger on that final climb, and finished ahead of his leader.

For anyone worried this Tour would be a procession for Froome, worry no more.

For anyone worried a third straight Tour title would be beyond Froome, your fears could have been realised today.

TOP 10

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BreakingARU TAKES YELLOW JERSEY

Confirmation that Fabio Aru has seized the yellow jersey off Chris Froome.

Froome finished 20 seconds behind the Italian and, with those four bonus seconds Aru got for third, he now leads the Briton by six seconds overall.

Stunning.

BreakingBARDET WINS STAGE 12

Oh! Tremendous kick from Romain Bardet on this brutal rise to the finish line.

He comes past Fabio Aru and Rigoberto Uran, holding them off to win the stage and take crucial bonus seconds.

Aru holds on to take four bonus seconds - and that could be enough for yellow.

Froome is really struggling here as the clock keeps ticking - he's lost the jersey, surely.

Bardet
Reuters

Bardet attacks

The Frenchman has surpassed Aru and is going for the win...

Froome is lagging. He could lose the yellow jersey here.

Aru attacks

The Italian has a lead into the final 200m, followed by Bardet and Uran.

Froome is being distanced!

Bennett caught

As quick as he went, George Bennett was quickly brought back by Mikel Landa.

Final stages now as we're into the final 400m.

Bennett attacks

George Bennett goes, taking the rest of the group by surprise.

1km to go

Final kilometre of this one - all the favourites together so no major time gaps today.

But bonus points and the glory of a stage win on the line.

1.1km to go

Dan Martin is onto Chris Froome's wheel.

The former Liege-Bastogne-Liege winner is excellent in steep finishes.

1.2km to go

Ireland's Dan Martin trying to dig in and move up the outside.

Does he fancy this stage win?

1.5km to go

Aru up out of his seat, but keeping pace with Froome.

Yates doing well at the back to stay in contention.

I think this is going to end in a very slow-motion sprint.

2km to go

After racing through that descent, the leaders are now onto the final climb, just 2km to go.

Nieve swings off for Sky, leading Landa to marshall Froome.

It's just 2.4km this climb, but an average gradient of 8.4% is the real kicker.

That leading group is Nieve, Landa, Froome, Aru, Bardet, Uran, Martin, Yates, Meintjes and Bennett.

So all the GC contenders - minus Fuglsang, Contador and Quintana - from the start of the day are still up there and will battle for the stage and crucial time on GC.

5km to go

The leaders move over the summit of the category one Col de Peyresourde.

They'll have a rapid descent now before the final summit finish.

Which looks a little like this...

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Contador dropped

The pace finally proves too much for Alberto Contador as the Spaniard drifts back towards the top of the Peyresourde.

6km to go

1km to the summit of the Col de Peyresourde

Compare and contrast Nairo Quintana out the back by himself with Chris Froome, surrounded by two team-mates.

The leaders have just 1km to go before they go over the summit.

7km to go

Mikels Nieve and Landa still with Chris Froome at the front of the race now.

The remaining favourites - Jakob Fuglsang and Nairo Quintana - are still right behind them, though.

Cummings caught

Chapeau! A belting effort from Steve Cummings but he had little chance on this climb against this Sky train as he is finally caught with 8.6km to go.

Whether this in his mind or not, British champion Cummings has provided a fitting tribute to Tom Simpson on the 50th anniversary of the British cyclist's death on Mont Ventoux.

You can bet Cummings will go again. A couple more stages in this year's edition appear to suit him well.

Cummings cracks

Oh no. Steve Cummings has cracked.

A massive effort from the British champion but his body language shifts as he realises that Team Sky are just too strong.

The lead is absolutely tumbling down.

9km to go

Cummings leads by

Steve Cummings' lead falls under one minute for the first time since very early on in this stage.

The rate that Team Sky are shooting up this climb, they could catch Cummings before the summit.

Third-placed Rigoberto Uran still looking good up there.

Peloton
Getty Images

Kwiatkowski has gone, having left it all on the road for Froome.

Nieve takes over, followed by Landa.

Contador is still there, doing his trademark dance on the peddles.

Yates is on the back of this group of leaders, hoping to stay in touch.

10km to go

Cummings leads by 1'20''

Steve Cummings goes under the 5km to go banner to the top of the Peyresourde, meaning he's about 10km from the stage finish.

His advantage is creeping down as Michal Kwiatkowski puts in his final dig for his leader Chris Froome.

Warren Barguil now off the back.

BBC Radio 5 live sports extra

Tune in to commentary from Simon Brotherton and Rob Hayles on BBC Radio 5 live sports extra to follow the final 10km of this key stage.

You can also listen by clicking the tab at the top of this page.

So Team Sky have Kwiatkowski, Landa and Nieve in front of Froome.

Fabio Aru is on the leader's wheel. Romain Bardet is still there, as are Dan Martin and Simon Yates.

How long can they last at this pace?

11km to go

Cummings leads by 1'35''

Team Sky setting a ruthless pace for Chris Froome now, which is putting many riders into the red and cutting into the lead of Britain's Steve Cummings out front.

Quintana dropped

Nairo Quintana started the day in eighth, 2'13'' behind Chris Froome but the Colombian is slipping rapidly off the back now.

Having ridden to second place in the Giro, the two-time runner-up in the Tour clearly doesn't have the legs this year.

12km to go

Cummings leads by 2'00''

In the midst of that flurry of drama, the remaining peloton took on some more food and refreshment before this climb of the Col de Peyresourde.

It's all back together behind but Britain's Steve Cummings has taken advantage of the stall in the chase to maintain his two-minute advantage despite being further up the climb.

Froome and Aru off the road

Chris Froome and Fabio Aru are in trouble as first and second in the Tour shoot off the road between two campervans.

Team Sky's Mikel Nieve overshot the corner and went straight on and Froome and Aru followed.

Fortunately both were able to slow and stop before crashing, while Nieve miraculously carved a path between the campervans and away from the spectators.

The rest of the group slowed and waited for the two favourites. It was perhaps not the best place to attack, before the climb, anyway.

Cummings is about to hit the start of the Col de Peyresourde - a 9.7km long climb of 7.8% average gradient.

What has the British champion got left?

A stunning effort so far on the 50th anniversary of the death of British cyclist Tom Simpson during the 1967 Tour.

18km to go

Cummings leads by 1'57''

The peloton rolls through the 20km to go marker, but Steve Cummings is 2km up the road and extending his gap to almost two minutes.

He'll need every second possible to have a chance of victory.

Team Sky appear happy to let him have that time, knowing they can take it back later.

Cummings is a dangerous man to gift time to, though.

20km to go

Cummings leads by 1'49''

Steve Cummings is even carving out a bit more time on the chasing peloton.

That peloton has been thinned out to just the overall favourites and their key climbing support now as Team Sky still set the tempo.

21km to go

Cummings leads by 1'35''

Cummings is remarkably holding on to his advantage as the race charges towards the Peyresourde.

So the Col de Peyresourde is next up as Steve Cummings speeds towards the category one climb.

Should he stay clear over the top of that, he still has one more nasty climb to tackle - a 2.4km drag of 8.4% average gradient to Peyragudes.

Our man OJ Borg has been out to look at the summit finish - the second of three in this year's Tour.

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25km to go

Cummings leads by 1'37''

Steve Cummings looks the epitome of focus on the descent, trying to maintain his advantage before hitting the Col de Peyresourde.

Meanwhile, Thomas de Gendt is about to be caught by the Team Sky train at the front of the peloton.

That same fate could soon befall Warren Barguil, too.