Race report

Hot and fast day of racing at Tour de France

Tour de France

The final day of racing before the last rest day at the Tour de France saw the peloton take on another 200 kilometre plus long stage from Rodez to Carcassonne. With some rolling terrain there was an air of uncertainty in the peloton whether it would be a day for the sprinters or the breakaway. Despite a fast start in the early kilometres, a trio quickly established itself out front and with the sprint teams spread across the road; it looked as if it would be the former.

With the day ticking by the team rode well together but the searing heat started to take its toll on the bunch. Unfortunately, Martijn Tusveld was caught up in a crash but he was able to remount his bike and continue. Within the peloton the pace increased over the final categorised climb and the bunch thinned down, with Alberto Dainese, Romain Bardet, Chris Hamilton and Andreas Leknessund making the reduced group of around 50 riders. Leknessund rode really strongly and helped to set a pace at the front, aiming to make it hard for some sprinters and their teams who were chasing behind but ultimately some more riders and teams came back to the bunch; making it around 75 riders strong.

Heading into the finale a new attacking duo held onto a good lead, meaning the pace was up even more. On the twisting and technical run-in Bardet tried to position Dainese but it was hectic in the bunch and Dainese got sandwiched between two riders and had to brake; meaning he was unable to compete fully in the sprint.

“It was a pretty hot day,” explained Dainese. “The start was easier than other days but the last climbs were pretty hard. Trek was pulling a lot and I could stay in the reduced bunch with Romain, Andreas and Chris. We put Andreas to ride and put some pressure on other sprinters and that was a super good job he did. Unluckily in the final it was a big fight to get to the front because every sprinter was almost alone. At around 600 metres to go I got boxed in and had to brake pretty hard, and then couldn’t really sprint. It was a bit unlucky but in the end it was also a super hard day and not easy to get a good position, but I’m proud of how the guys rode.”

Team DSM coach Matt Winston added: “It was a hot one out there today for the guys; in the car it got to 42 degrees at one point. The heat started to affect the race and we saw a few crashes in the peloton, with Martijn involved in a big crash. Then the race really split after that. We came to a situation where the chance for Alberto looked okay so Andreas pulled on the front. Unfortunately, when we came into town Alberto was sandwiched and not really able to do his sprint.”

Results

Pos. Rider Team Time Points
1 PHILIPSEN Jasper Alpecin-Deceuninck 4:27:27 120
2 VAN AERT Wout Jumbo-Visma ,, 50
3 PEDERSEN Mads Trek - Segafredo ,, 25
25 DAINESE Alberto Team DSM ,, -
26 BARDET Romain Team DSM ,, -
91 HAMILTON Chris Team DSM 3:47 -
94 LEKNESSUND Andreas Team DSM ,, -
135 EEKHOFF Nils Team DSM 20:16 -
138 DEGENKOLB John Team DSM ,, -
144 TUSVELD Martijn Team DSM ,, -