Stage hit by tacks
Bradley Wiggins was amongst the riders to suffer a puncture on Sunday
Sabotage struck the Tour de France on Sunday as leader Bradley Wiggins was forced to call a truce on stage 14 as a result of around 30 punctures caused by tacks on the road.
The riders were hit by the tacks - the race director confirmed their presence afterwards - towards the end of an absorbing stage.
At the summit of the Mur de Peguere, the second of two category one climbs on the day's 191-kilometre route from Limoux to Foix, Wiggins and defending champion Cadel Evans (BMC Racing) were among those to suffer flat tyres.
As Luis-Leon Sanchez (Rabobank) broke free of the day's escape to solo to victory, Wiggins called for the peloton to neutralise their effort to allow Evans to return to the group as they finished more than 18 minutes behind.
It left the top of the general classification unchanged and with Wiggins facing six more days' racing to keep the maillot jaune on a permanent basis as the Tour's first British winner.
Jean-Francois Pescheux, competitions director of Tour organisers Amaury Sports Organisation, said: "We don't know who it was. No-one saw anything.
"We've found some of the tacks. They're the kind of tacks you use in mattresses or carpets. They were obviously thrown by a spectator.
"There were around 50 riders together in the front peloton at the top and about 30 of them ended up with punctures. Some of them had three or four nails in their tires.
"We couldn't neutralise it straight away because we didn't know what had happened. Fortunately Sky neutralised the race."
Why on earth would anyone want to do something like that. Some people are so stupid they could
caused a serious accident. Bradley Wiggins is an absolute star he slowed everyone down to wait for
Cadel Evans. Come on Brad you deserve this win.
I love the Tour De France it is a sport for gentlemen
Brad Wiggins - what a gent and a diamomnd geezer from NW6. Let's hope he keeps the Yellow Jersey all the way - with Cav winning in Paris.
Not likely certain riders in the peloton were targeted is it- to allow the breakaway to gain time? Just a thight.
Mike the bike - NW3
Cheating always goes on in sport if money is at stake .
good to see sponsors taking a u turn good on all cyclists who are honest and fans of sport
wiggo well done
latest olympic videos
A boxer who won a silver medal at the London Olympics has admitted assaulting a reveller at a lap-dancing club after a row over cult reality... More A boxer who won a silver medal at the London Olympics has admitted assaulting a reveller at a lap-dancing club after a row over cult reality TV show The Valleys.
Date 9 hrs ago, Duration 0:32, Views 243