Tour de France: Tadej Pogacar wins stage 15 in sprint finish with overall leader Primoz Roglic

Primoz Roglic (left) and Tadej Pogacar (right) finish stage 15 of the Tour de France
Primoz Roglic and Tadej Pogacar again showed they are the two strongest riders in the race

Tadej Pogacar won stage 15 of the Tour de France to slightly cut Primoz Roglic’s lead as defending champion Egan Bernal dropped out of contention.

Pogacar beat yellow jersey Roglic in a sprint to the line and now trails his fellow Slovenian by 40 seconds.

Bernal cracked badly on the final climb to Grand Colombier and lost over seven minutes to slip from third to 13th overall.

Britain’s Adam Yates moved up to fifth in the general classification.

Roglic was expertly delivered to the finish after another supreme display by his Jumbo-Visma team but Pogacar again showed he will attempt to reduce the deficit at every opportunity.

The 21-year-old UAE Team Emirates rider kicked clear late on to take his second stage win of the Tour and 10 bonus seconds, with Roglic second and Richie Porte in third.

“Jumbo-Visma set a really high pace all day and it made it a really difficult stage so I was just waiting for the sprint at the end and I’m so happy to win again,” said Pogacar.

“The plan is to win the Tour de France. Primoz Roglic seems unstoppable but today Bernal cracked and maybe one day myself or Primoz will crack – there are still a lot of opportunities ahead.”

Pogacar, who lost over a minute after being caught out by the crosswinds on stage seven, will have to attack from further out in the final week to overhaul Roglic, which will be tough given the strength of Jumbo-Visma.

Belgian all-rounder Wout van Aert, who has won two bunch sprints in this year’s Tour, drove the group of favourites for the first 8km of the 17.4km final climb and set such a high pace he dropped Grand Tour winners Bernal and Nairo Quintana.

Former Giro d’Italia champion Tom Dumoulin then reeled in an attack by Yates at 6km to go and led the main group all the way into the final kilometre before Roglic attacked.

Porte, Pogacar and Miguel Angel Lopez were the only riders able to react before Pogacar prevailed in a repeat of the Slovenian one-two on stage nine.

But despite being beaten again, this was another strong showing by Roglic, who will be confident his team can control the rest of the race.

Yates also rode well to finish eighth and is now just 29 seconds off the podium entering the final week.

Jumbo’s strength was in marked contrast to Ineos Grenadiers, who have won seven of the past eight Tours as Team Sky and Team Ineos.

All of Bernal’s support riders except Michal Kwiatkowski and Jonathan Castroviejo were dropped early on before the Colombian, who came into the race still recovering from a back injury, also began to slip back and rapidly lose time.

The 23-year-old is now eight minutes 25 seconds down on Roglic and Ineos have no back-up option, with deputy leader Richard Carapaz over 30 minutes down.

While four-time Tour winner Chris Froome looks to still be working his way back to top form, Ineos’ decision not to select 2018 champion Geraint Thomas will come under scrutiny again.

The Welshman, who is now targeting this year’s Giro in October, is currently third overall heading into the final stage of Tirreno-Adriatico on Monday.

In a frantic start to stage 15, Sam Bennett managed to prevent green jersey rival Peter Sagan going up the road before beating him at the intermediate sprint to extend his lead in that competition to 45 points.

After a rest day on Monday, the race resumes with a rolling 164km route from La Tour-du-Pin to Villard-de-Lans on Tuesday.

Stage 15 result

1. Tadej Pogacar (Slo/UAE Team Emirates) 4hrs 34mins 13secs

2. Primoz Roglic (Slo/Jumbo-Visma) Same time

3. Richie Porte (Aus/Trek-Segafredo) +5secs

4. Miguel Angel Lopez (Col/Astana) +8secs

5. Enric Mas (Spa/Movistar) +15secs

6. Sepp Kuss (US/Jumbo-Visma) Same time

7. Mikel Landa (Spa/Bahrain McLaren)

8. Adam Yates (GB/Mitchelton-Scott)

9. Rigoberto Uran (Col/EF Pro Cycling) +18secs

10. Alejandro Valverde (Spa/Movistar) +24secs

General classification after stage 15

1. Primoz Roglic (Slo/Jumbo-Visma) 65hrs 37mins 07secs

2. Tadej Pogacar (Slo/UAE Team Emirates) +40secs

3. Rigoberto Uran (Col/EF Pro Cycling) +1mins 34secs

4. Miguel Angel Lopez (Col/Astana) +1mins 45secs

5. Adam Yates (GB/Mitchelton-Scott) +2mins 03secs

6. Richie Porte (Aus/Trek-Segafredo) +2mins 13secs

7. Mikel Landa (Spa/Bahrain McLaren) +2mins 16secs

8. Enric Mas (Spa/Movistar) +3mins 15secs

9. Nairo Quintana (Col/Arkea-Samsic) +5mins 08secs

10. Tom Dumoulin (Ned/Jumbo-Visma) +5mins 12secs

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Tour de France: Soren Kragh Andersen wins stage 14

Soren Kragh Andersen smiles as he leans on his bike after winning stage 14 of the 2020 Tour de France
Soren Kragh Andersen secured Sunweb’s second win in three days after Marc Hirschi claimed stage 12

Soren Kragh Andersen took a surprise win on stage 14 of the Tour de France to cap a sublime tactical ride by Team Sunweb.

The Dane attacked with three kilometres to go in a frantic finale and stayed away to claim his first stage win.

Primoz Roglic maintained his 44-second lead in the yellow jersey.

Peter Sagan finished fourth in Lyon to cut Sam Bennett’s green jersey lead to 43 points after Sagan’s Bora-Hansgrohe team dropped the Irishman earlier on.

Luka Mezgec finished second, with Simone Conssoni third, as the peloton arrived 15 seconds behind Kragh Andersen.

“I feel very emotional. I’ve dreamed about this but it’s hard to say you’re good enough until you do it. I’m amazed,” said Kragh Andersen.

“I had really good legs the whole day but you never know how good the other guys are. It took me a long time in the Tour to get confidence in myself but I knew if I was suffering then they were suffering.”

Stage results

1. Soren Kragh Andersen (Den/Team Sunweb) 4hrs 28mins 10secs

2. Luka Mezgec (Slo/Mitchelton-Scott) +15secs

3. Simone Consonni (Ita/Cofidis) Same time

4. Peter Sagan (Svk/Bora-Hansgrohe)

5. Casper Pedersen (Den/Team Sunweb)

6. Jasper Stuyven (Bel/Trek-Segafredo)

7. Matteo Trentin (Ita/CCC Team)

8. Oliver Naesen (Bel/AG2R La Mondiale)

9. Sonny Colbrelli (Ita/Bahrain McLaren)

10. Marc Hirschi (Swi/Team Sunweb)

General classification after stage 14

1. Primoz Roglic (Slo/Jumbo-Visma) 61hrs 03mins 00secs

2. Tadej Pogacar (Slo/UAE Team Emirates) +44secs

3. Egan Bernal (Col/Ineos Grenadiers) +59secs

4. Rigoberto Uran (Col/EF Pro Cycling) +1min 10secs

5. Nairo Quintana (Col/Arkea-Samsic) +1min 12secs

6. Miguel Angel Lopez (Col/Astana) +1min 31secs

7. Adam Yates (GB/Mitchelton-Scott) +1min 42secs

8. Mikel Landa (Spa/Bahrain McLaren) +1min 55secs

9. Richie Porte (Aus/Trek-Segafredo) +2mins 06secs

10. Enric Mas (Spa/Movistar) +2mins 54secs

More to follow.

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Tour de France: Primoz Roglic extends lead as Daniel Martinez wins stage 13

Daniel Martinez wins stage 13
Martinez prevailed after an arduous battle with Kamna

Primoz Roglic extended his lead in the yellow jersey on the Tour de France after Daniel Martinez claimed a superb win on stage 13.

Roglic and fellow Slovenian Tadej Pogacar dropped all of their rivals on a gruelling final climb to Puy Mary.

Defending champion Egan Bernal slipped to third overall, with Roglic now leading Pogacar by 44 seconds.

EF Pro Cycling’s Martinez punched clear of Lennard Kamna in the final metres to take his first Tour stage victory.

Fellow Colombian Bernal, who had trailed Roglic by 21 seconds after stage 12, struggled on the brutal summit finish and is now 59 seconds back on Roglic and 15 seconds down on Pogacar.

Frenchmen Guillaume Martin and Romain Bardet, who started the stage third and fourth overall respectively, also cracked and are out of the top 10.

“I see this as a Slovenian day, not a Colombian day,” said Roglic.

“I’m super happy with how it went but here’s still a lot of road ahead of us and next week there’ll different scenarios with different riders.”

When the day began, the top 10 on general classification was the closest it had been at this stage of any Tour since 1947, but the race ripped apart on the two final climbs.

Ineos Grenadiers set a high pace on the penultimate climb of the Col de Neronne, dropping Britain’s Adam Yates as well as Martin and Bardet, who crashed earlier in the stage.

Pavel Sivakov had sat up from the breakaway to work for Bernal, who initially also had Richard Carapaz in support, suggesting the defending champion could look to attack.

But Roglic’s Jumbo-Visma again displayed they are the strongest team in the race, with Sepp Kuss and Tom Dumoulin taking up the pace-setting and isolating Bernal.

When Pogacar sought to animate the race once again by attacking, only Roglic could go with his friend and compatriot, with Bernal distanced.

Richie Porte, Mikel Landa and Miguel Angel Lopez did well to limit their losses and all move up on GC, but a visibly suffering Bernal came in 38 seconds down on Roglic, who had only led the Colombian on bonus seconds before this stage.

Yates, who is now seventh overall, recovered well to finish alongside Nairo Quitana and two seconds back on Bernal and Rigoberto Uran.

Martinez, who won this year’s Criterium du Dauphine after Roglic pulled out while leading, proved to be the strongest rider from a 17-man breakaway that finally established after a frenetic start to the stage.

His team-mates Hugh Carthy and Neilson Powless both attacked first but were each brought back before Max Schachmann dropped Powless to begin the final climb alone.

When Martinez countered, Schachmann’s Bora-Hansgrohe team-mate Kamna jumped on his wheel and let the Colombian do all the work to reel in the German.

Kamna twice tried to kick clear of Martinez in the final 2km with sections of 15% gradient after Schachmann was dropped, but Martinez responded each time before making his own decisive move late on.

Saturday’s 14th stage is a 194km route from Clermont-Ferrand to Lyon.

Top 10 on stage 13

1. Daniel Martinez (Col/EF Pro Cycling) 5hrs 01min 47secs

2. Lennard Kamna (Ger/Bora-Hansgrohe) +4secs

3. Max Schachmann (Ger/Bora-Hansgrohe) +51secs

4. Valentin Madouas (Fra/Groupama-FDJ) +1min 33secs

5. Pierre Rolland (Fra/BB Hotels-Vital Concept) +1min 42secs

6. Nicolas Edet (Fra/Cofidis) +1min 53secs

7. Simon Geschke (Ger/CCC Team) +2mins 35secs

8. Marc Soler (Spa/Movistar) +2mins 43secs

9. Hugh Carthy (GB/EF Pro Cycling) +3min 18secs

10. David de la Cruz (Spa/UAE Team Emirates) +3mins 52secs

General classification after stage 13

1. Primoz Roglic (Slo/Jumbo-Visma) 56hrs 34mins 35secs

2. Tadej Pogacar (Slo/UAE Team Emirates) +44secs

3. Egan Bernal (Col/Ineos Grenadiers) +59secs

4. Rigoberto Uran (Col/EF Pro Cycling) +1min 10secs

5. Nairo Quintana (Col/Arkea-Samsic) +1min 12secs

6. Miguel Angel Lopez (Col/Astana) +1min 31secs

7. Adam Yates (GB/Mitchelton-Scott) +1min 42secs

8. Mikel Landa (Spa/Bahrain McLaren) +1min 55secs

9. Richie Porte (Aus/Trek-Segafredo) +2mins 06secs

10. Enric Mas (Spa/Movistar) +2mins 54secs

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Tour de France 2020: Marc Hirschi of Team Sunweb wins his first Tour stage

Marc Hirschi
Marc Hirschi came third in the ninth stage on Sunday before winning on Thursday

Switzerland’s Marc Hirschi took stage 12 of the Tour de France for his first-ever stage win.

Hirschi, 22, for Team Sunweb, moved to the front with 28km remaining of the 218km ride from Chauvigny to Sarran.

The Swiss rider, in his first Grand Tour, had led for more than 80km on Sunday’s ninth stage before being caught 1.5km from the end and finishing third.

Slovenia’s Primoz Roglic maintained his overall lead.

He finished 24th, two minutes and 30 seconds behind Hirschi, while Egal Bernal, second in the general classification, came 25th in the same time as Roglic, who keeps a 21-second overall advantage.

Hirschi, who also finished on the podium at the second stage, finished 47 seconds clear of France’s Pierre Rolland for the BB Hotels-Vital Concept team.

He said: “It’s unbelievable. Two times I was really close so I never believed I could make it. I can’t describe it. It’s hard to find the words.

“I had the picture in my mind from the last two stages when I was close. Then in the last three kilometres, I believed I could make it. It’s my first pro victory and it’s in the Tour so it couldn’t be better.

“It’s like a dream and it feels incredible.”

Friday’s 13th stage is over 191.5km from Chatel-Guyon to Puy Mary.

More to follow.

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Tour de France: Caleb Ewan wins thrilling sprint in Poitiers

Caleb Ewan
The victory is Ewan’s second stage win of this year’s Tour

Lotto Soudal’s Australian rider Caleb Ewan snatched victory on stage 11 of the Tour de France as the sprinters went toe to toe in a thrilling finish.

Seven-time green jersey winner Peter Sagan edged out Sam Bennett for second after muscling aside Wout van Aert in the run-in.

Irishman Bennett remains in green.

Jumbo-Visma safely delivered team leader Primoz Roglic through the 167.5km stage to maintain the Slovenian’s 21-second overall lead.

Stage 11 result

1. Caleb Ewan (Aus/Lotto Soudal) 4hrs 00mins 01secs

2. Peter Sagan (Svk/Bora-Hansgrohe) Same time

3. Sam Bennett (Ire/Deceuninck-Quick-Step)

4. Wout van Aert (Bel/Jumbo-Visma)

5. Bryan Coquard (Fra/BB Hotels-Vital Concept)

6. Clement Venturini (Fra/AG2R La Mondiale)

7. Mads Pedersen (Den/Trek-Segafredo)

8. Luka Mezgec (Slo/Mitchelton-Scott)

9. Hugo Hofstetter (Fra/Israel Start-up Nation)

10. Olivier Naesen (Bel/AG2R La Mondiale)

General classification after stage 11

1. Primoz Roglic (Slo/Jumbo-Visma) 46hrs 15mins 24secs

2. Egan Bernal (Col/Ineos Grenadiers) +21secs

3. Guillaume Martin (Fra/Cofidis) +28secs

4. Romain Bardet (Fra/AG2R-La Mondiale) +30secs

5. Nairo Quintana (Col/Arkea-Samsic) +32secs

6. Rigoberto Uran (Col/EF Pro Cycling) Same time

7. Tadej Pogacar (Slo/UAE-Team Emirates) +44secs

8. Adam Yates (GB/Mitchelton-Scott) +1mins 02secs

9. Miguel Angel Lopez (Col/Astana) +1mins 15secs

10. Mikel Landa (Spa/Bahrain McLaren) +1mins 42secs

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