After two days in the Pyrenees, sprinter Cees Bol can catch his breath again. In the first week of the Tour de France he was close to a stage victory a couple of times, but he wasn’t allowed to go to the podium yet. Until now Bol finished third, seventh and second in the sprints in which he participated.
“After the rest day I’ll get two more chances anyway“, Bol knows. “Then maybe stage nineteen, but probably not. And twenty-one of course”, he meant on the final stage to the Champs-Elysées.
Take a look at the profiles of the stages that Bol has circled:
It’s not much, but Bol is holding on to it. Just like the good feeling he has after two tough stages through the Pyrenees. “I went up pretty well, I’ve never really been in trouble.”
“I’ve always ridden in the big group, in contrast to some other sprinters who did a few kilometres alone or in very small groups. But a weekend like that does cut into it. It takes a lot of energy. But the legs were pretty good.”
With a massage, a good evening meal and doing nothing (“also sometimes nice”) Bol hopes to spend the evening of the rest day. But he still has to leave, because all riders have to be tested for the coronavirus.
“That’s thirty kilometres from here, we’ll probably combine it with a bike ride. Then we cycle there and the team makes sure the bus is parked there.”
The results won’t be very long in coming. “Last time it went pretty fast, same day or next morning.”
The results of the tests will be watched with as much excitement as bunch sprints or mountain stages. If two members of a team – riders or staff – are positive, the whole team has to go home.
Yet Bol is not afraid of the result. “There’s nothing you can do about it, you can’t control it. What I’m most afraid of is a false positive test.”
In case of a positive test without complaints there will be a second test anyway, which can undo a wrong positive test. “I’m not very busy with it, but it would be very annoying.”
How the procedures work in that case, Bol is not ready. “I haven’t quite figured it out, but at least there’ll be a lot of bullshit.”