Garmin-Cervélo, a US squad seeking to transform cycling with a zero-tolerance policy on doping, defied skeptics with an impressive performance in the Alps – including today's Alpe d'Huez climb.
Today Briton Mark Cavendish will be challenging a Frenchman for the green jersey, worn by the overall sprint leader – who, more often than not, tends to be a prima donna.
Spectators in costume cheer as the pack, or peloton, pass through the village of Le Champ Saint Pere during the first stage of the Tour de France on July 2.
In the post-Lance Armstrong era, Team Garmin-Cervélo is proving it's possible to win clean. Since the squad pioneered a rigorous internal drug-testing system in 2007, not a single rider has tested positive.
Garmin-Cervelo rider Thor Hushovd (l.) of Norway leads his teammates during the team time trial in the second stage of the Tour de France 2011 cycling race in Les Essarts on July 3.
Tour de France Stage 18 was won by Briton Mark Cavendish in a close finish. But overall race leader Alberto Contador maintained his eight-second lead over Andy Schleck. In Saturday's sprint, Schleck will take one last run at Contador.
The Tour de France, which ends Sunday, offers $2.6 million in prizes. Beyond battling for the yellow jersey, racers can collect points (think: Super Mario) for smaller awards.
The Tour de France Stage 10 was won in a sprint by Portugal’s Sérgio Paulinho. Meanwhile, his RadioShack teammate Lance Armstrong fell another two minutes behind overall leader Andy Schleck.
Alberto Contador of Spain is reflected in the sunglasses of Egoi Martinez of Spain as the riders wait to take the start of the 14th stage of the Tour de France from Revel to Ax Trois Domaines, France, on July 18.