LE CAP D'AGDE, France — Bradley Wiggins doesn't think the Tour de France needs a "boss" of the pack. At least not him. Riders are equal and he's too reclusive, he says.
But the Brit is taking charge and showed leadership Saturday with a bold, though unsuccessful, effort to help a teammate win Stage 13, instead won by Germany's Andre Greipel.
Wiggins finished the windy, flat 134.8-mile ride from Saint-Paul-Trois-Chateaux to Le Cap d'Agde on the Mediterranean with his top rivals to retain the yellow jersey for a seventh straight day.
Greipel earned his third stage victory this Tour. A photo finish showed he won by half a wheel's length ahead of Slovakian Peter Sagan. Seconds earlier, Wiggins, with Sky teammate Edvald Boasson Hagen on his back wheel, led a speeding bunch of riders around a sharp final bend to overtake two breakaway riders, hoping to set up Boasson Hagen for a win.
Such bold displays are unusual from the wearer of the yellow jersey. Wiggins had his reasons: It's safer to stay in front of possible trouble, and he owed one to Boasson Hagen "because he's been solid this Tour for me — and all season," Wiggins said.
Experts have pointed to riders over the years who have dominated the pack, or peloton, with teamwork, willpower and race mastery, earning them the "boss" moniker. "At the end of the day, we're all equals," Wiggins said.