A stage in the Tour de France disrupted by fans couldn’t have been better for Jumbo-Visma. GC riders Primoz Roglic and Tom Dumoulin didn’t get into any problems, some competitors lost time and on top of that team mate Wout van Aert already won his second stage.
Dumoulin looks with amazement at the performance of Van Aert. “It’s not normal, I don’t know what he has.”
“He really takes a lot of wind for Primoz all day, he was with Robert Gesink the only big bear we had left to keep Primoz out of the wind. And he’s squeezing out another sprint, unbelievable.”
Sports director Merijn Zeeman speaks of a ‘phenomenal’ performance by the Belgian rider. “It was a very good day for the general classification and the stage, that’s wonderful”
Watch Van Aert’s sprint victory here:
The whole stage was blown for the favourites. Bora-Hansgrohe, Peter Sagan’s team, provided fans at the beginning of the stage to unload the sprinters and over thirty kilometers before the end the first group broke up again.
“What a ride yo, somehow it just worked out,” says Dumoulin. “We were always good with a lot of men. We knew where it was going to break and that’s where it broke. It’s a matter of good timing and making an effort at the right time.”
Not everyone succeeded, because especially Tadej Pogacar was surprised and lost his third place in the general classification. Dumoulin: “That’s why we drove, we heard that right away. It couldn’t be better.”
Terribly well done
Sailor praises the work of the whole Jumbo-Visma formation. “I think the team did a great job today.”
“Grischa Niermann (sports director, ed.) has explored the stage,” says Zeeman. “There’s also been a fan stage in which we weren’t so good, we’re extra focused on what’s needed to perform”
“We were very well prepared for this. The fact that Bora set the pace from the start made the last 45 kilometres less hectic”
Teams are going to try something
Saturday and Sunday there are mountain stages in the Pyrenees on the program and with Roglic and Dumoulin Jumbo-Visma has the numbers two and five of the general classification in the ranks.
“Some ranking men lost a minute and a half, they’re gonna have to take that back somewhere. I expect it will be a race and some teams will try something,” said Zeeman.