The Tour de France has been a thrill-a-minute (if you ignore Stages 10 and 11...) and there have been plenty of talking points already.
Three-time victor and defending champion Froome stayed clear of trouble, but admitted the incidents made for a more stressful day.
It's a 214.5km Pyrenean mountain stage from Pau to Peyragudes that includes six categorised climbs, with riders expected to spend more than six hours in the saddle.
'It was one of the most relaxed days we've had in this Tour.
"It was very pleasant", Warren Barguil said, summing up the day. "The race [for the green jersey] is not over but I've used all my chances that I've got so far".
"It's one of the key stages of this year's race". "It's a good start but it's just a start".
Aru, the Italian champion and 2015 Spanish Vuelta victor, leads the list followed closely by last year's runner-up Romain Bardet, the Frenchman who is third overall, 51 seconds back.
"It was clear to me I had to change bikes straight away and it appeared that Fabio Aru accelerated at that moment", Froome said in comments provided by the Sky Team.
Bora's man led under the red kite and only came to heel with 250-metres to go. Dylan Groenewegen (Lotto-NL Jumbo) continued his impressive form to follow his third place yesterday with second today, while Edvald Boasson-Hagen of Dimension Data took third. I never made a mistake, all the lines were ideal.
He missed out on the stage win by just 19 seconds and certainly appeared to be strong enough to catch the Spaniard.
Team Sky led the peloton towards Bergerac in a bid to keep Froome safe before the sprint trains took over on the way into town. All day they were on it, keeping me in a great position.
Whoever wears yellow at the end of the day in Marseille will cruise around the Champs-Elysees in the mostly ceremonial final leg a day later and pick up the trophy. General classification contenders Romain Bardet (AG2R), Jakob Fuglsang (Astana) and Alberto Contador (Trek-Segafredo) all weathered falls to make it back to the peloton, but will nurse injuries into the upcoming pair of crucial mountain stages. Simpson, though, remains a popular figure both home and overseas and still to this day French newspapers compare British riders to the man they called "Major Simpson". "If you get arrogant and think you are unbeatable then you will lose".