Race report

Romain Bardet 10th on tough stage 6 test at Tour de France

Tour de France

Romain Bardet raced to a strong 10th place on the longest stage of the Tour de France after a long, hard fight from start to finish. The finish line came after a testing finale with multiple short, sharp ramps which served to shake up the front group, reducing the leading group to just shy of 40 riders.

The day got off to a rapid start with continuous attacking and no real break forming for some time, resulting in the first 100 kilometres being covered in around just two hours. A break of three eventually formed, containing the yellow jersey Wout van Aert himself, pulling out a near four minute gap before the peloton started to peg them back.

Having joined the fight early on to cover dangerous moves, Team DSM set about focusing on the finale and rallying around Bardet for the finish. This focus saw them keep him out of trouble throughout the stage as the pace gradually ramped up behind the leaders, eventually bringing the break back inside the final 20 kilometres. Attacks came but heading into the final ramp to the line the front group was all together and Bardet was well positoined having been dropped off by his teammates. Then as the final drag sprint to the line unfolded Bardet dug deep to cross the line in 10th, concluding another tough day at Le Tour.

Romain Bardet commented after the stage: “It was a super had day, a typical Tour de France stage full gas from start to finish. I think we did a good job in the beginning covering the moves, but lactic start to build in the legs of everyone so we focused on positioning for the finish. Otherwise though, it was the first really hard stage of the tour so it’s a good step forward.”

Team DSM coach Matt Winston added: “Today was a fast, long day, full gas from the start. We looked at getting one of the guys into the break but in the end it was only three guys up the road so for us it was super hard to get in and wouldn’t have brought any real benefit. So we focused on Romain in the final. The guys brought him into a good position – the way we rode was really positive. He got a top 10 which is nice but just lacked an edge in the sprint. But that’s ok, things are moving in the right direction.”

Results

Pos. Rider Team Time Points
1 POGAČAR Tadej UAE Team Emirates 4:27:13 120
2 MATTHEWS Michael Team BikeExchange - Jayco ,, 50
3 GAUDU David Groupama - FDJ ,, 25
10 BARDET Romain Team DSM ,, -
46 LEKNESSUND Andreas Team DSM 1:14 -
47 VERMAERKE Kevin Team DSM 1:17 -
91 TUSVELD Martijn Team DSM 5:37 -
92 HAMILTON Chris Team DSM 6:10 -
121 DEGENKOLB John Team DSM 7:28 -
148 EEKHOFF Nils Team DSM 10:24 -
163 DAINESE Alberto Team DSM 11:28 -