Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Alaphilippe takes drama-filled Tour stage



Alaphilippe takes drama-filled Tour stage

Content image - Phnom Penh Post
Julian Alaphilippe celebrates as he wins stage 16 of the 105th Tour de France on July 24. AFP

Alaphilippe takes drama-filled Tour stage

Frenchman Julian Alaphilippe, of the Quick Step team, soloed to victory on a drama-filled Tour de France 16th stage on Tuesday after capitalising on a late crash by Britain’s Adam Yates (Mitchelton).

Climbing specialist Alaphilippe, claiming his second stage win of the 105th edition, finished nearly 20 seconds ahead of a small group of chasers on the first of four days in the Pyrenees.

“I’m delighted,” said Alaphilippe. “It was really hard to get into the early breakaway and for the rest of the day, I was suffering.”

Yellow jersey holder Geraint Thomas (Sky) crossed the finish line nearly nine minutes in arrears after yet another stage in which his race lead did not come under threat.

But the Welshman was one of several riders left requiring treatment after tear gas got in his eyes and throat when national gendarmes sprayed tear gas in a bid to clear protesting farmers from the road, which they had blocked with bales of hay around 26km into the 218km ride.

“I felt a tingle in the eyes, and in the back of my throat. I used some water to wash it out,” said Thomas. “But I was alright in the end.”

Ahead of stage 17 on Wednesday, described as the most decisive stage in the final week, Thomas maintained his 1min 39sec lead on four-time champion and teammate Chris Froome.

Dutchman Tom Dumoulin (Sunweb) is still third at 1:50.

But on a day that saw Slovakian Peter Sagan mathematically secure his sixth green jersey for the points competition, the day belonged to Alaphilippe.

The 26-year-old Frenchman has spent the past days chasing points to add to his collection for the King of the Mountains’ polka dot jersey.

But determination, and good luck combined to hand him his second victory days after his stunning solo ride into Le Grand Bornand on stage 10.

Gilbert plunges into ravine

Yates was on his own and in the lead when he crashed on the descent of the Col du Portillon, the fifth and last climb of the day, his front wheel skidding away from under him as he negotiated a left-hander.

Just as Yates got back on his bike, Alaphilippe sped past, looked around at the Englishman and surged ahead.

“I was going to wait for him because it’s never great to crash,” added Alaphilippe, considered a faster finisher than Yates.

“But I looked back and saw he was suffering, and looked a little scared so I continued.”

Alaphilippe had plenty of time to soak up his second win of the race.

“It’s fantastic. I’m really happy,” added Alaphilippe, who also had some kind words for teammate Philippe Gilbert.

The Belgian was solo and in the lead with 57km remaining when he skidded and flew over a parapet and into a ravine.

He required help to climb back out but, once back on his bike, the former world champ bravely finished the stage.

“I hope he’s okay after what happened,” said Alaphilippe.

Stage 17 features the only remaining summit finish on the race and, at 65km long, Thomas is expecting fireworks from the word go.

“It will be a tough day, a good two hours of climbing,” said Thomas. “There’s no point in going too hard too soon because the last climb is very hard.

MOST VIEWED

  • Locations shut, dozens more Covid-19 positive

    The Ministry of Health has closed 23 locations in connection with the February 20 community transmission of Covid-19 and summoned for testing anyone who had direct contact with affected people and places. The number of discovered related infections has risen to 76, including 39 women. In a press release,

  • Kingdom's Covid cluster cases jump to 194

    The Ministry of Health on February 25 confirmed 65 new cases of Covid-19, with 58 linked to the February 20 community transmission. The latest cluster cases include nine Vietnamese nationals, five Cambodians, one each from Korea, Singapore and Japan, with the rest being Chinese. This brings the total number

  • Cambodia's Covid cluster cases rise to 137

    The Ministry of Health on February 24 recorded 40 more cases of Covid-19, with 38 linked to the February 20 community transmission. Of the 40, two are imported cases involving Chinese passengers. The 38 include two Vietnamese nationals and one Cambodian, with the rest being Chinese. This brings the total cases

  • Covid cluster raises alarm, health bodies urge vigilance

    The Ministry of Health and the World Health Organisation (WHO) in Cambodia have expressed great concern over the February 20 cluster transmission of Covid-19 in the community. Both entities appealed for vigilance and cooperation in curbing further spread of the virus. Ministry spokeswoman Or Vandine said

  • PM confirms third Covid-19 community transmission

    Prime Minister Hun Sen on February 20 announced the Kingdom's third outbreak of Covid-19 community transmission after 32 people tested positive in just over 10 hours. Addressing the public from his residence after an emergency meeting, Hun Sen said: "I dub it February 20 Community Event, in which 32 cases

  • Cambodia to make auto-rickshaws

    Locally-assembled electric auto-rickshaws could hit the Cambodian market as soon as early in May after the Council for the Development of Cambodia (CDC) gave the greenlight to an investment project at the weekend. According to a CDC press release, it will issue a final registration