UAE Team Emirates' Pogacar seizes lead at Tour de France
Pogacar finished the 150.8-kilometre (93.7-mile) trek over five mountain passes from Oyonnax to Le Grand-Bornand in fourth place, seconds behind stage winner Dylan Teuns
Tadej Pogacar dealt a demoralising blow to his remaining Tour de France rivals on the first day in the Alps, where the defending champion claimed the yellow jersey in Saturday’s gruelling eighth stage.
Pogacar strengthened his bid to retain his Tour title after proving once again to be a step above the rest on the most-demanding ascents. The 22-year-old Slovenian set off on his own on the fourth of five categorised climbs, shedding Richard Carapaz, the last man — and possible contender — to have kept on his wheel.
Pogacar finished the 150.8-kilometre (93.7-mile) trek over five mountain passes from Oyonnax to Le Grand-Bornand in fourth place, seconds behind stage winner Dylan Teuns.
Teuns, a Belgian rider for the Bahrain team, managed to conserve a slim lead over the hard-pushing Pogacar over the final peak before negotiating the tricky descent to the finish line.
Mathieu van der Poel relinquished the lead he had held for six days when he faded fast midway through the brutal stage that also inflicted even heavier losses on last year’s runner-up Primoz Roglic and 2018 winner Geraint Thomas. The two pre-race title hopefuls, who had both taken tumbles in the first week, completely disconnected even before the serious ascents started.
Wout van Aert remained in second place but fell from 30 seconds behind at the start of the stage to 1 minute, 48 seconds behind Pogacar.
Carapaz finished over three minutes behind Pogacar and is now five minutes back overall in fifth.
Results from Stage 8
Stage winners 1. Dylan Teuns (BEL) Bahrain Victorious 3:54:41 2. Ion Izagirre (ESP) Astana - Premier Tech +44 3. Michael Woods (CAN) Israel Start-Up Nation +47 4. Tadej Pogacar (SLO) UAE Team Emirates +49 5. Wout Poels (NED) Bahrain Victorious +2:33 6. Simon Yates (GBR) Team BikeExchange +2:43 7. Paret-Peintre AG2R - CitroÃ«n Team +3:03 (FRA) 8. Guillaume Martin (FRA) Cofidis “ 9. Mattia Cattaneo (ITA) Deceuninck - Quick-Step +4:07 10. Jonas Vingegaard (DEN) Jumbo - Visma +4:09 11. Alexey Lutsenko (KAZ) Astana - Premier Tech “ 12. Enric Mas (ESP) Movistar Team “ 13. Richard Carapaz (ECU) INEOS Grenadiers “ 14. Rigoberto Urán (COL) EF Education - Nippo “ 15. David Gaudu (FRA) Groupama - FDJ “ 16. Pello Bilbao (ESP) Bahrain Victorious “ 17. Wilco Kelderman (NED) BORA - hansgrohe “ 18. Ben O’Connor (AUS) AG2R - CitroÃ«n Team “ 19. Sergio Henao (COL) Team Qhubeka - NextHash +4:13 20. Davide Formolo (ITA) UAE Team Emirates +4:18 Overall leaders 1. Tadej Pogacar (SLO) UAE Team Emirates 29:38:25 2. Wout van Aert (BEL) Jumbo - Visma +1:48 3. Alexey Lutsenko (KAZ) Astana - Premier Tech +4:38 4. Rigoberto Urán (COL) EF Education - Nippo +4:46 5. Jonas Vingegaard (DEN) Jumbo - Visma +5:00 6. Richard Carapaz (ECU) INEOS Grenadiers +5:01 7. Wilco Kelderman (NED) BORA - hansgrohe +5:13 8. Enric Mas (ESP) Movistar Team +5:15 9. David Gaudu (FRA) Groupama - FDJ +5:52 10. Pello Bilbao (ESP) Bahrain Victorious +6:41
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