After stage 16 on Monday, Briton Chris Froome is well on his way to his second Tour de France title in three years.

Ruben Plaza of Spain used an impressive solo break to easily claim a well-deserved victory in the 201 km stage.

Letour summarized the stage:

A swashbuckling Peter Sagan again played the leading role in the 201-kms 16th stage of the Tour de France between Bourg de Peage and Gap, but had to be content with his 5th second place in the race this year behind Spanish opportunist Ruben Plaza, who went in the final climb to claim victory. The veteran Spaniard launchd a timely attack on Col de Manse, 15 kms from the finish line, to keep Sagan at bay by 30 seconds. It was a career topping for the Lampre rider, who avenged the withdrawal of team leader Rui Costa, the last winner in Gap two years ago.

Aspen resident Teejay Van Garderen, who dropped into third place in general classification over the weekend, finished in a sprint bunched together with Alberto Contador, Nairo Quintana, and Froome in the yellow jersey. Van Garderen is now fighting for a place on the podium at the Champs-Élysées. At present, Van Garderen holds a 30 second advantage over fourth place Alejandro Valverde, whose Movistar team has been riding quite well of late.

Froome, meanwhile, has been able to maintain his three-minute plus lead and appears to be growing more confident as the stages continue to dwindle down. He escaped a tricky stage Monday that saw his Sky teammate Geraint Thomas take a nasty spill after being checked by another rider coming around a severe corner.

With five stages to go, the standings look like this:

Tuesday will be the last break riders get before the frantic finish expected over the final five stages, which will spend four days climbing the French Alps before the finish in Paris.

Team Sky and Froome will be cautiously optimistic, but for the moment his lead looks nearly insurmountable.

Sammy Mugharbil, a mile high Sports intern and MSU-Denver student contributed to this report