Stage 13 was the kind of race where the contest for the stage victory became entirely detached from the battle for yellow. With a ten-minute lead it was certain that the breakaway would win, while back down the road the general classification riders would tear strips off one another.
TOUR REPORT STAGE 13
CHÂTEL-GUYON > PUY MARY CANTAL
It was Daniel Martinez of EF Pro Cycling and Colombia who took the victory, overpowering a Bora - Hansgrohe double act of Lennard Kamna and Max Schachmann. The pair played it as well as they possibly could have tactically, but Martinez was simply stronger than them. Martinez began the Tour hoping to do something in the GC. His stage victory shows how a racer’s priorities can change.
Further down the mountain, it was Tadej Pogačar who kicked off the yellow jersey hostilities. He attacked the group of favourites and took Primož Roglič with him. The pair opened up a gap and managed to steal enough seconds on the chasers to swing Pogačar into the lead of the white jersey.
Mikel Landa of Team Bahrain McLaren crossed the line in the next group after Pogačar and Roglič, with the resurgent Aussie Richie Porte for company. The Spaniard is looking strong and composed so far in the race, but will need all the support that his climbing team mates Mohoric, Poels, Caruso and Bilbao can give him in the coming days.
It was a dark day for French hopes, with Guillaume Martin’s marvelous campaign coming to an end when he lost contact with the Roglic group on the penultimate climb, while Romain Bardet was withdrawn after the race due to a concussion. One rider’s loss is another’s gain, however. Landa will move up another coupe of spots on the GC as he closes in on the podium spots.
Thanks to Russ Ellis and Chris Auld for capturing the race. See more of their work on Instagram @cyclingimages & @cauldphoto.