Pogacar does not even leave the crumbs

The Slovenian achieved his second consecutive stage in the Pyrenees in Luz Ardiden, third in this edition, sixth in two years ... He also collects three jerseys: yellow, youth and mountain. It is insatiable.


On July 15, one day after its National Holiday, French cycling tried to sing the Marseillaise, motivated by the presence of Emmanuel Macron in the race. The Tour is more than a sporting event, it is the heritage of the country, also of humanity. The President of the Republic chose a great day in the Pyrenees, the Tourmalet stage, the most symbolic of the race and the most climbed. There are already 84 steps from the Grande Boucle through the colossus. Notable Pierre Latour and David Gaudu passed through there. Previously he had also played his Alaphilippe, Elissonde and Rolland cards… Oh, là, là.

Latour and Gaudu, especially Gaudu, a great climber, were looking for the feat in Luz Ardiden, which is really a Spanish rather than a French climb. There, Lale Cubino won three times, in El Porvenir, in the Vuelta and the Tour. And there they have also inscribed their names Pedro Delgado, Miguel Indurain, Roberto Laiseka and Samuel Sánchez. They were other times: the 80s, the 90s, the first decade of the 21st century. The Spanish have always won the Tour, they have always been protagonists in the Pyrenees. Also in the 60s and 70s, at that time of the Kas de Antón Barrutia or Antonio Gómez del Moral, the first champion of the Future, both of whom died this week. Race cyclists. This Thursday there were also Spaniards who also sought luck: the Olympians Ion Izagirre and Omar Fraile. They did not arrive either. Since the latter raised his arms in Mende in 2018, none have done it again. The drought lengthens.

Neither Spanish nor French. The triumph was going to be played between the bosses. And there, they already know who's boss: Tadej Pogacar. Insatiable. Ineos put their pawns first on the last climb: Richard Carapaz wanted the stage and the podium. Especially after learning that one of the rivals for Paris, Rigoberto Urán, was suffering from the mythical slopes of the Tourmalet. The Colombian has dropped out of the general classification. The Jumbo also stood out: Jonas Vingegaard had the same interests as the Ecuadorian. But Pogacar wants it all. No compromises. That was the message he sent to his rivals when he put Rafal Majka in the lead. The Slovenian was going to attack again, as the day before at the Portet. He has taken a liking to winning in yellow.

Pogacar started on his way to his third victory on this Tour, which is also his sixth in two starts, in the short career of the 22-year-old cannibal. As the day before, only Carapaz and Vingegaard resisted the push. But there was one more guest: Enric Mas. The Spaniard, who always grows in the last week of the greats, wanted to take advantage of the fight for the podium and started in search of the top of Luz Ardiden, encouraged by the background. The Spanish triumph was still possible. But Pogacar did not give his permission. Neither today. There are generous champions, Indurain was the most exemplary, and other voracious ones, Eddy Merckx represents that model better than anyone. The Slovenian belongs to this second lineage. It's in your right. In passing, Pogacar donned the Mountain jersey, which he added to the white of the best Junior and the yellow of the absolute monarch. I said: it does not even leave the crumbs.

Photos from as.com
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