Ineos wins pairs

Kwiatkowski and Carapaz embraced the goal. Landa and Mas climbed to fifth and sixth places. Roglic and Pogacar will play the Tour on the clock.


Michal Kwiatkowski and Richard Carapaz embraced the finish line of La Roche sur Foron. The Pole, faithful squire, slightly ahead. The Ecuadorian, head with stripes, smiling for sharing the glory. They had talked about it for the last few kilometers. Who wins? And Ineos won. After several bitter days, with Egan Bernal struggling on the road until he decided to get off, after assuming that this year there was no yellow jersey, as had happened in seven of the last eight editions, the British team collected the award for persistence and conquered one of the toughest stages of this Tour, some label it the queen stage.

Behind there was no news among the riders who play the Tour. Primoz Roglic and Tadej Pogacar will resolve their differences, specifically 57 seconds, in the time trial of La Planche des Belles Files. There was also no change in the third step of the podium, maintained by Miguel Ángel López, who will defend a minute and a half against Richie Porte. But there was in the next line of the classification, in which Mikel Landa and Enric Mas climbed to the fifth and sixth places to the detriment of Adam Yates and Rigoberto Urán.

Carapaz went on the run for the third day in a row, showing off his legs after loosening the slab of work for Egan Bernal and his tortuous Tour debut. This time he took the company of Kwiatkowski, which freed him from efforts in the tremendous chained of the Alps, although he already got into some fights himself, especially in that pique he had with Marc Hirschi, another adventurous repeater. The Swiss won the sprint on the summits of the Roselend, the Ruta des Villes and the Saisies, but on the descent of the latter he paid dearly for the heater when, in response to an attack, he took a wrong turn to the right. Hirschi had claimed himself in this Tour as a great downhill rider… Until a fall reminded him of the rider's fragility. The Aravis, the penultimate port of the day, was already crowned by Carapaz in the lead without the opposition of Helvetian

The shadow of Carapaz was no longer Hirschi, but a Spaniard, Peio Bilbao, the only threat of the two Ineos at this point in the race, in which they had accumulated a nine-minute lead with 57 kilometers remaining and with the demanding Plateau de Glières still as judge of the route. It did not last long. The Basque dropped down in the port, did not resist the onslaught, and began to look more back than forward, in case Mikel Landa appeared there. Carapaz, who crowned the last colossus, and Kwiatkowski left like this, after passing through the sterrato towards a victory for Ineos and a Mountain jersey that only partially compensates for their hecatomb in the general classification.

The Glières was the last chance of the Tour, the last Alpine colossus. Then there is only the time trial. Mikel Landa tried again. This time he did not put Bahrain to harden the race like the day before, when he could not finish at the last port. This time he tried it with a duo attack with Wout Poels, which left him thrown on the rough 15% ramps of this last alpine test. Landa left alone, also knowing that his teammates Damiano Caruso and Peio Bilbao were still ahead. The Italian gave him one last push, although not enough. The group of roosters had been selected after an arreón by Enric Mas, which continues to grow, and Primoz Roglic had been left with the only escort of Sepp Kuss.

Pogacar sniffed the weakness and attacked sterrate, hard. Roglic did not yield, but lengthened the offensive, which made his compatriot agonize and claimed a main victim: Richie Porte. The group was reduced to a minimum, to six survivors: Roglic, Pogacar, López, Landa, Mas and Kuss. The rest of the route was going to become a strange chase, in which Porte gave everything from behind, and ahead there was not much understanding, with Landa and Mas as the main interested in keeping the race launched. Roglic spoke with Pogacar and must have asked him for a truce: "See you on the clock." They weren't going to shoot. The sextet linked up with Bilbao, who put aside a last effort, while behind Dumoulin and Van Aert began to relieve Porte, incomprehensibly. What was the Jumbo at stake in this set? Porte spliced. And when least expected of him, at 35, he will round out his best Tour.

Photos from
Powered by Blogger.