Stage nine of the 2014 Tour de France belonged to the two Tonys of the peloton – stage winner Tony Martin (Omega Pharma-QuickStep) and new race leader Tony Gallopin (Lotto-Belisol).
Martin attacked with Cannondale Pro Cycling’s Alessandro De Marchi on the descent of the day’s first climb, the Col de la Schlucht, and then dropped the Italian on the category one ascent of the Col de Markstein with just under 60km remaining.
The three-time world time trial champion then switched to TT mode and soloed to victory, finishing two minutes and 45 seconds ahead of a chasing group which contained Gallopin.
With Gallopin unlikely to pose a threat in the general classification come Paris, the Astana team of Vincenzo Nibali, who had led the race since winning stage two, was happy to relinquish the lead, knowing their energy is better conserved with a tough day in the Vosges mountains to come on stage ten, when Nibali, who now trails Gallopin by one minute and 34 seconds, could well regain the yellow jersey.
These shots by ASO photographer Gautier Demouveaux tell the story of the ninth stage of the 2014 Tour de France.