The Slovenian Tadej Pogacar UAE Emirates) grew bigger in the first stage with a high finish, conquering for the second time the summit of the Planche Belles Filles, where, dressed in yellow, he raised his arms for the second day in a row, dealing another blow to the Tour de France .
Two years after winning the time trial that gave him the 2020 Tour in La Planche and 24 hours after showing off the sprint in Longwy, Pogacar (Komenda, 23 years old), once again demonstrated his enormous power and dominance of the race by winning the pulse in the final section, in the middle of “sterrato”, the Danish Jonas Vingegaard and the Slovenian Primoz Roglic (Jumbo), unable to bend the knee of the double winner of the Tour, in a state of grace.
GREAT POGACAR-VINGEGAARD DUEL
An exciting outcome, played to the death in the last km of land that led to the finish line of La Planche, the talismanic place of Pogacar. German Lennard Kamna, the last survivor of the day’s breakaway, was already savoring victory when he passed Vingegaard, Pogacar and Roglic 200 meters from the finish line.
Vingegaard, enemy number one of the champion, unleashed Pogacar near the line, but the skipper reacted in the midst of the dust smoke to respond forcefully and opened a few meters that were already enough to raise his arms dressed in yellow as the winner of the seventh stage of the Tour disputed between Tomblaine and the top of the Vosges, of 176.3 km.
Pogacar set a time of 3:58.40, at an average of 44.3 km/hour, the same record as Vingegaard. The arreón moved away in 12 seconds to Roglic, 14 to Kamna and Thomas, 19 to Gaudu and 21 to Enric Mas, who stayed with the best until the explosion of the Slovenian.
Pogacar had marked the stage that adds his eighth victory in the Tour and the 42nd in his professional career. The work of his team throughout the day deserved the signature of the leader, he took note and gave the UAE a brilliant victory.
“I had to reward them for their effort, and besides, I had this stage in mind for a long time, for my special, I wanted to win it. Vingegaard is one of the best climbers in the world, he has a great team and all the distance he achieves is little” he said at the finish line.
Another step in the general classification, another warning and another stone in the incipient building of the third consecutive Tour. Pogacar will arrive in Switzerland tomorrow as the leader, with 35 seconds over Vingegaard, 1.10 minutes with respect to Geraint Thomas and 1.18 with Adam Yates, immediate pursuers. Enric Mas is ninth at 1.43 minutes.
ESCAPE CONTROLLED BY THE UAE FROM POGACAR
Another frantic start and an all-out battle to form the day’s breakaway. In the first hour, 50.6 km were covered, a pace that dispersed many intentions until 10 men managed to lead the way: Kämna, Schachmann, Asgreen, Erviti, Geschke, Teuns, Pedersen, Ciccone, Durbridge and Barthe, always controlled by a platoon in which he took command of the persecution of Pogacar’s subordinates.
The emperor’s men knew that the German Max Schachmann was 2.07 from the yellow jersey and that he could be dangerous. They allowed the advance squad to reach the Col de Grosse Pierre (3a, 3.1 km at 6.4%) with 2.30 minutes of progress. Schachmann and Kamna tried to impose the rule of the majority, and why not, try to get one of them to give Bora the first big mountain stage.
Schachmann became the virtual leader for a good part of the stage, but the dream of leadership was in the hands of the UAE, inexhaustible in command of the peloton with the 8 men in the lead carrying Pogacar on a carriage, awaiting events.
LA PLANCHE SINKS KAMNA AND SURPASSES POGACAR
The breakaway entered the final ascent of the Planche des Belles Filles with 4 riders in the lead, Kamna, Geschke, Teuns and Durbridge. Erviti got down, loaded with drums to hydrate Enric Mas, who traveled with the favorites just 1 minute from the head of the race.
The ascent to La Planche des Belles Filles (1st, 7 km to 8.7 with ramps from 24), this time had the surname of “Super” Planche for the final 1 km extension of dirt road before the last line. A hard port, where you have to calculate your strength so as not to succumb.
Kamna attacked ahead, 5 from the top, with force, without looking back, convinced of making the effort of the whole day worthwhile. His team put 2 men in the escape. As he reached out to touch the sky with his hands behind him, the battle between the higher hierarchy was unleashed.
The UAE made the climb involving all its troops, and 2.3 from the finish line Rafal Majka went into action to clear the way for Pogacar. The Pole squeezed himself to bursting. Boss time. Pogacar got to his feet, changed his pace and looked at the rivals. He had an answer in Vingegaard, who dared to offer a pulse to the Slovenian.
The Dane took the lead. Pogacar looked at him, lowered his head and clenched his teeth. He went for him. Both ruined Kamna, who already saw himself as the winner, drowned on the shore after so much sacrifice. Side by side, the fastest was the boss of the Tour. Honor to a peak that can already bear his name. There he won the first Tour, and perhaps commissioned the third.
This Saturday the eighth stage enters Switzerland with the 186.3-kilometre route between Dole and Lausanne, a day with an undulating profile with 2 third-class difficulties and as many fourth-class difficulties. The incentive will be at the end, at the Cota del Estadio Olímpico, 4.8 km at 4.6 percent. Some “auctioneer” may have a day of glory.
carlos de torres
(c) EFE Agency