Jonas Vingegaard sealed a maiden Tour de France title in Paris after finishing safely in the chasing bunch on the final stage, which was won by Jasper Philipsen.

Team Jumbo-Visma rider Vingegaard led back-to-back champion Tadej Pogacar by more than three and a half minutes heading into the largely processional finale on Sunday.

The Dane saw out the job in a stress-free manner – even enjoying some champagne during the 116-kilometre stretch – to end Pogacar's spell of General Classification dominance.

A few packs of riders tried to break free of the bunch on the Champs-Elysees, setting up a frantic late sprint that saw Belgium's Philipsen earn his second stage win of this year's race.

Vingegaard crossed over moments later, in unison with his Jumbo-Visma team after retaining the yellow jersey, which he had been in possession of since stage 11.

He was also crowned King of the Mountains, while team-mate Wout van Aert joined the celebrations in his green jersey after another solid outing.

Jumbo-Visma are the first team to win the yellow, polka dot and green jerseys at the same edition of the race since Faema managed the feat in 1969, thanks to Eddy Merckx.

Pogacar never came within two minutes and 18 seconds of Vingegaard in the GC, once the Danish rider had the lead.

The Slovenian therefore had to settle for the consolation prize of the white jersey for a third year running, with that award given to the best-placed rider under the age of 26.

Jonas Vingegaard went into the final weekend of the Tour de France with his yellow jersey all but assured.

It is the mountain stages that so typically settle the general classification in Grand Tours, and this edition of Le Tour proved no different.

A dominant ride on stage 18 saw Vingegaard, with admirable support from Sepp Kuss and Wout van Aert, drop two-time defending champion Tadej Pogacar on the final ascent in the Pyrenees.

Vingegaard powered away on that last climb, leaving Pogacar in his wake, and well over three minutes behind overall in the hunt for the yellow jersey, as the Dane collected just a second Grand Tour stage win of his career, the first having come on July 13 to put him in command of the race.

That left Vingegaard merely needing to safely negotiate the final three stages – two sprint finishes and a time trial – and he did just that, parading into Paris on Sunday with his grip on the yellow jersey firmly intact. Now he is the champion, a remarkable feat considering where he has come from.

Pogacar's Slovenian compatriot Primoz Roglic has previously been Jumbo-Visma's main hope, but an exceptional team ride has also represented a passing of the baton to Vingegaard, the 25-year-old who four years ago was working at a fish factory to supplement his income. Vingegaard was recruited by the team based on a remarkable time up a daunting climb in Spain, which was subsequently posted to the popular training application Strava.

Jumbo-Visma have turned in a team performance for the ages. Their plan, and subsequent execution, has been near-perfect. Even the loss of Roglic, whose attention will now turn to winning yet another Vuelta a Espana title, could not derail this powerhouse unit heading into the final week.

 

Vingegaard's first win, on stage 11 up the Col du Granon, came as a result of Jumbo-Visma attacking early, luring Pogacar into responding, and draining the Slovenian's energy as the 23-year-old was proven to be a mere mortal after all.

Even when stacked up against the days of when Team Sky (now INEOS Grenadiers) dominated Le Tour, Jumbo-Visma's performance this time around has been something special. As a result, they are the first team to win the yellow, polka dot (Vingegaard) and green (Van Aert) jerseys at the same edition of the race since Faema managed the feat in 1969, thanks to the great Eddy Merckx.

Vingegaard is the second Dane to win the Tour de France after Bjarne Riis in 1996, and it is the first time since 1992 that the winner of the race has been a native of the country where it started, with the first three stages of this Tour having taken place across Denmark.

Not since 2006 (Michael Rasmussen) has a Dane won the polka jot jersey, though it is the third successive edition of Le Tour that the GC leader has also claimed the King of the Mountains classification, with Pogacar having done so in 2020 and 2021. Before 2020, it had happened only three times across the previous 50 races – Merckx in 1970, Carlos Sastre in 2008 and Chris Froome in 2015.

Van Aert, meanwhile, is another star. The 27-year-old finished in second place in the opening three stages before finally claiming victory at the fourth time of asking, and his decisive attack on Hautacam gave Vingegaard the platform he needed to end Pogacar's hopes.

A sprinter by trade but a brilliant climber to boot, Van Aert never looked likely to relinquish the green jersey, easily fending off Jasper Philipsen and Pogacar for that prize. He is the first Belgian rider to win the points classification of the Tour de France since Tom Boonen in 2007.

As for Pogacar, three in a row proved one triumph too many, but when you contrast the talents of UAE Team Emirates with Jumbo-Visma, his achievements so far must be considered even more remarkable.

The white jersey, which Pogacar won in each of the last two years for the best young rider, was retained. He has been leading the youth classification over each of the last 51 racedays in the Tour de France (from stage 13 in 2020 to stage 21 in 2022), which is the longest run of consecutive racedays in the first place of a specific classification.

 

Pogacar will surely be back out to regain his crown in 2023 and along with Vingegaard could dominate for years to come, though do not count out Tom Pidcock from one day contesting for a jersey.

On his Grand Tour debut, the 22-year-old Briton has mightily impressed. His triumph on the famous Alpe d'Huez will go down in the record books. He not only broke the 100km/h mark on a descent, but became the youngest stage winner on the mountain in Le Tour history, breaking a 38-year record held by Lucho Herrera.

Pidcock, who won gold on the mountain bike at the Tokyo Olympics, is the 15th British rider to win a Tour de France stage, but just the second to do so on the Alpe d'Huez after Geraint Thomas, who at 36 has battled to a brilliant third-place finish overall.

It might well be the 2018 champion's swan song at Le Tour, while another veteran campaigner, Nairo Quintana, came in sixth in the general classification. That is Quintana's first top-10 Grand Tour finish since the 2019 Vuelta a Espana, and his best performance in this race since 2016.

Jonas Vingegaard declared his impending Tour de France title win is the "biggest in cycling" after increasing his lead on the penultimate stage.

The Dane's second place behind Team Jumbo-Visma team-mate Wout van Aert in Saturday's stage 20 time-trial saw him add eight seconds to his advantage over Tadej Pogacar, meaning he has a lead of over three-and-a-half minutes heading into Sunday's final stage.

Vingegaard is set to secure his first Tour title in Paris, and with tears in his eyes, he outlined what it means to him, especially after finishing second behind Pogacar last year.

"It means everything to me," he said. "It's really incredible. It's hard for me to put words on it. It's the biggest win in cycling.

"Since last year, I always believed I could do it. It's a relief that I did. I'm just so happy and proud."

Vingegaard detailed how determined the team was to right the wrongs of two years ago, when Pogacar overturned the lead of another Jumbo-Visma rider, Primoz Roglic, to pip him to the yellow jersey.

"What happened two years ago, we always thought about it and we didn't want it to happen again," he said. "We just wanted to go for it today. [The emotion] just shows how close everyone is in this team. It's a special thing we have."

Pogacar was reflective after finishing third on Saturday, but anticipates many more battles between himself and Vingegaard.

"It's been a good three weeks, with many ups and downs, with lots of bad luck for my team, but the battle between me and Jonas for the yellow jersey has been very special," Pogacar said.

"I think we have some very interesting next two or three years ahead of us. Jonas has stepped up his game this year. I'm motivated and looking forward to the next challenges."

Jonas Vingegaard is poised to win his first Tour de France title on Sunday after all-but finishing off the job in a stage 20 time trial that was won by Wout van Aert.

Vingegaard's Team Jumbo–Visma team-mate Van Aert produced a stunning ride to win the 40.7km stage from Lacapelle-Marival to Rocamadour on Saturday.

Dane Vingegaard - who went into penultimate stage with a near three-and-a-half minute lead over rival Tadej Pogacar - crossed the line 19 seconds slower than Van Aert in second spot, but eight quicker than the third-placed two-time defending champion.

Vingegaard is set to secure the general classification title in Paris and was understandably emotional after finishing the time trial, embracing his wife as the scale of his achievement sunk in.

It could have been a very different story though, as Vingegaard came within inches of crashing in the closing stages, with his tyres clipping a grass verge and almost hitting a wall.

Geraint Thomas, who sits third in the GC standings, also put in a strong showing, finishing in fourth place.

Jonas Vingegaard raced to victory on stage 18 of the Tour de France to extend his general classification lead as Jumbo-Visma all but clinched the three main jerseys.

Vingegaard started the 143.2-kilometre route between Lourdes and Hautacam, the last mountain stage of Le Tour, with a lead of two minutes and 18 seconds over defending champion Tadej Pogacar.

But Jumbo-Visma star Vingegaard stretched that lead to three minutes and 26 seconds on Thursday, with team-mate Wout van Aert starring before allowing the Dane to take over in the final four kilometres to triumph.

Numerous riders tried and failed to contest with the yellow jersey contenders throughout the climb, with a moment of sportsmanship between Pogacar and Vingegaard coming with 28 kilometres to go.

Vingegaard almost crashed, but it was Pogacar who ended up falling in the descent. The Dane then slowed in front to wait for the UAE Team Emirates rider before the pair shook hands and continued.

"I think he kind of missed the corner and then he went down into the gravel. The bike disappeared. I waited for him," Vingegaard said of the incident after victory before dedicating the win to his team.

"It's incredible. This morning, I said to my girlfriend and my daughter that I wanted to win for them and I did. This one is for my two girls back home.

"I was just happy that it finally ended. I am so really happy that I won the stage, but there are more days to come.

"Luckily, I have to thank all my team-mates. You see Wout van Aert dropped Pogacar in the end. Everyone was incredible. They were all incredible."

VINGEGAARD OUT TO END POGACAR RUN

Vingegaard was quick to quell talk of his potential yellow jersey victory, telling reporters: "I don't want to talk about it. Let's talk about it in two days."

But the 25-year-old is on the verge of securing both the general classification (GC) and king of the mountains titles, which would halt Pogacar's search for history, while Van Aert comfortably leads the points classification.

Pogacar has been aiming to become the first rider since Richard Virenque to win the polka dot best climber's jersey in three consecutive editions, and the second to win his first three Tour de France races after Eddy Merckx, who triumphed in the GC on his first five attempts.

STAGE RESULTS

1. Jonas Vingegaard (Jumbo-Visma) 3:59:50
2. Tadej Pogacar (UAE Team Emirates) +1:04
3. Wout van Aert (Jumbo-Visma) +2:10
4. Geraint Thomas (INEOS Grenadiers) +2:54
5. David Gaudu (Groupama-FDJ) +2:58

CLASSIFICATION STANDINGS 

General Classification

1. Jonas Vingegaard (Jumbo-Visma) 71:53:34
2. Tadej Pogacar (UAE Team Emirates) +3:26
3. Geraint Thomas (INEOS Grenadiers) +8:00

Points Classification

1. Wout van Aert (Jumbo-Visma) 451
2. Tadej Pogacar (UAE Team Emirates) 219
3. Jasper Philipsen (Alpecin-Deceuninck) 196

King of the Mountains

1. Jonas Vingegaard (Jumbo-Visma) 72
2. Simon Geschke (Cofidis) 64
3. Giulio Ciccone (Trek–Segafredo) 61

Tadej Pogacar claimed a thrilling win in stage 17 of the Tour de France following a remarkable battle in the Pyrenees with yellow jersey holder Jonas Vingegaard.

UAE Team Emirates rider Pogacar claimed his third stage victory of this year's Tour, producing a decisive final kick to edge Jumbo-Visma rider Vingegaard on an enthralling and tortuous final climb.

Pogacar and Vingegaard somehow found the legs to produce a stunning finish on imposing gradients at the end of the 130-kilometre stage from Saint-Gaudens to Peyragudes.

The Slovenian's victory owed much to the efforts of team-mate Brandon McNulty, who set a furious pace to help the trio drop the rest of the field, ensuring Pogacar was in a position to go for the win for a depleted UAE team.

UAE lost Rafal Majka to a muscle tear having already been robbed of the services of Marc Soler, who finished stage 16 outside the time limit. Soler had appeared to be struggling from the effects of the searing heat that has spread across Europe.

Despite having only four riders left in the peloton to start the stage, UAE blew the race open, enabling Pogacar to launch his first attack after reaching the summit of the penultimate climb first.

Yet he could not succeed in putting distance between himself and Vingegaard as the pair proved incredibly evenly matched.

Indeed, it initially appeared as if Vingegaard would claim the glory after McNulty, who won the day's combativity award, was dropped.

But Pogacar had a final burst left in the tank that allowed him to cross the line arms aloft, though he gained only four seconds on Vingegaard, whose lead is two minutes and 18 seconds in the general classification.

POGACAR OPTIMISTIC OVER GC HOPES

Despite his minimal gains in the GC, Pogacar retains high hopes he can overhaul Vingegaard with one mountain stage left. The Tour will effectively be decided on stage 20's time trial. Both Pogacar and Vingegaard are excellent time-triallers.

"The team rode today, we were only four, to take the stage win is incredible," Pogacar said. "We can be proud, we see tomorrow as another chance. Tomorrow is another day, which I'm looking forward to.

"I gave absolutely everything. I know that I need to win, there's no other way, I gave it all for the team. I was so happy.

"Brandon did an amazing job. He was so good today. Special mention goes to him.

"I am optimistic [about his GC hopes]. Tomorrow is a more hard day, we can try again tomorrow."

STAGE RESULTS

1. Tadej Pogacar (UAE Team Emirates) 3:25:51
2. Jonas Vingegaard (Jumbo-Visma)
3. Brandon McNulty (UAE Team Emirates) +0:32
4. Geraint Thomas (INEOS Grenadiers) +2:07
5. Alexey Lutsenko (Astana) +2:34

CLASSIFICATION STANDINGS 

General Classification

1. Jonas Vingegaard (Jumbo-Visma) 67:53:54
2. Tadej Pogacar (UAE Team Emirates) +2:18
3. Geraint Thomas (INEOS Grenadiers) +4:56

Points Classification

1. Wout van Aert (Jumbo-Visma) 416
2. Tadej Pogacar (UAE Team Emirates) 202
3. Jasper Philipsen (Alpecin-Deceuninck) 196

King of the Mountains

1. Simon Geschke (Cofidis) 64
2. Jonas Vingegaard (Jumbo-Visma) 52
3. Tadej Pogacar (UAE Team Emirates) 46

Hugo Houle dedicated victory on stage 16 of the Tour de France to his late brother as Jonas Vingegaard kept a tight hold on the yellow jersey.

Canadian Houle lost brother Pierrik in December 2012 when he died in a hit-and-run crash while jogging in Sainte-Perpetue, Quebec.

Almost 10 years later, Houle pointed to the sky as he crossed the line alone after the 178.5-kilometre ride from Carcassonne to Foix, earning his first Grand Tour stage win.

"This one is for my brother, man," said an emotional Houle, moments later.

The riders were put to the test over the climbs of Port de Lers and Mur de Peguere in the second half of Tuesday's stage, as the race reached the Pyrenees after a rest day.

The three days in the mountains only get tougher from here, and Vingegaard and Tadej Pogacar will be duking it out in the push for the peaks before they look to clinch victory in Paris on Sunday. Geraint Thomas remains third, with the top three starting the day precisely as they began it.

Pogacar and Vingegaard were playing cat and mouse on Port de Lers, with the man in yellow refusing to let his nearest rival make up any ground in the general classification, practically setting up camp on his back wheel.

Far away in the distance, Houle (Israel-Premier Tech) was almost riding a separate race, with France's Valentin Madouas (Groupama-FDJ) taking second place, over a minute down the road, and Houle's fellow Canadian and team-mate Michael Woods in third.

Matteo Jorgensen came off on a corner late on as his grip gave way, costing the American valuable seconds that pushed him out of contention to win the stage, eventually coming home fourth.

Brotherly love as Houle savours long-awaited win

Houle was close to tears as he took in the magnitude of his victory.

He said: "I never win a race, so I guess it's the right place to win my first race.

"When I attacked, it was basically to set the table for Michael Woods. When I saw they let me go, Mike made a gap, I just went full gas. At the end, I hung on. I was suffering so bad in the steep climbs.

"I made it, and it means a lot to me. I had one dream: to win the stage for my brother who died when I turned professional, and today that one is for him. I've worked for 10, 12 years, and today I got my win for him, so it's incredible. I'm just so happy."

STAGE RESULTS

1. Hugo Houle (Israel-Premier Tech) 4:23:47
2. Valentin Madouas (Groupama-FDJ) +1:10
3. Michael Woods (Israel-Premier Tech) +1:10
4. Matteo Jorgensen (Movistar) +1:12
5. Michael Storer (Groupama-FDJ) +1:25

CLASSIFICATION STANDINGS 

General Classification

1. Jonas Vingegaard (Jumbo-Visma) 64:28:09
2. Tadej Pogacar (UAE-Team Emirates) +2:22
3. Geraint Thomas (INEOS Grenadiers) +2:43

Points Classification

1. Wout van Aert (Jumbo-Visma) 399
2. Tadej Pogacar (UAE-Team Emirates) 182
3. Jasper Philipsen (Alpecin-Deceuninck) 176

King of the Mountains

1. Simon Geschke (Cofidis) 58
2. Louis Meintjes (Intermarche–Wanty–Gobert Materiaux) 39
3. Neilson Powless (EF Education–Easypost) 37

Tom Pidcock marked his Tour de France debut with a stunning ride on stage 12, while race leader Jonas Vingegaard held off Tadej Pogacar.

Up the famous Alpe d'Huez, on Bastille Day, Olympic gold medallist Pidcock stormed to a remarkable, record-setting triumph – his first Grand Tour stage win.

Having attacked with 10 kilometres of the climb remaining, approaching the culmination of a 165.5km ride on Thursday, the 22-year-old Yorkshireman saw off Louis Meintjes to claim a remarkable triumph.

In the process, Pidcock – who was part of a five-man breakaway that took a six-minute time gap to the foot of the final ascent – became the youngest stage winner up the Alpe d'Huez in Le Tour history, breaking the record held by Lucho Herrera since 1984.

Yet Pidcock's tale was not the only incredible story of a quite sensational stage, with four-time champion Chris Froome claiming third, having planted himself in the breakaway group. While the yellow jersey is far out of the 37-year-old's reach, his performance echoed the form he was able to show in the years prior to his serious crash in 2019.

Behind the lead group, the fascinating general classification tussle between new leader Vingegaard and two-time defending champion Pogacar unfolded, hinting at the drama that is sure to come over the coming stages.

Pogacar twice attacked late on, yet Jumbo-Visma's Vingegaard kept pace.

The GC rivals pushed on for a sprint finish, with Pogacar nosing ahead to claim fifth place, though he was unable to damage Vingegaard, while Pidcock's INEOS Grenadier's team-mate Geraint Thomas, who conquered the mountain while wearing yellow in 2018, put himself into the top three in the overall standings.

But the day belonged to Pidcock, who after ploughing on to victory through thousands of vociferous spectators, said: "That was unbelievable, one of the craziest experiences ever. I can hardly hear anything, I've probably got hearing damage!

"That was ridiculous, at many points I thought I was going to get taken out."

Team GB's golden boy a speed demon

Pidcock is a star on the mountain bike, and those technical skills came in handy on the descent of the Col du Galibie, which preceded the climb up Alpe d'Huez. He clocked a top speed of 100km/h on the way down, while he averaged 19.7km/h on his way up to the summit finish.

"That is a record, I've never been over 100k before. It helps when there's a race to go for, doesn't it?" he said. 

"I'm lucky that I can descend or I wouldn't have won today. I don't think there was any way of me getting away at the start of the stage but I knew if the break was close enough at the top, I could go across on the descent because it was pretty twisty. I'm lucky Froomey was in front, we worked well together."

Froome, who won his first Tour de France when Pidcock was just 13, said: "He was flying down the descents today. His bike handling probably came in handy, there were a few times where I held back a bit because I was definitely at the limit."

STAGE RESULTS

1. Tom Pidcock (INEOS Grenadiers) 4:55:24
2. Louis Meintjes (Intermarche–Wanty–Gobert Materiaux) +0:48
3. Chris Froome (Israel–Premier Tech) +2:06
4. Neilson Powless (EF Education–EasyPost) +2:29
5. Tadej Pogacar (UAE-Team Emirates) +3:23

CLASSIFICATION STANDINGS 

General Classification

1. Jonas Vingegaard (Jumbo-Visma) 46:28:46
2. Tadej Pogacar (UAE-Team Emirates) +2:22
3. Geraint Thomas (INEOS Grenadiers) +2:26

Points Classification

1. Wout van Aert (Jumbo-Visma) 313
2. Tadej Pogacar (UAE-Team Emirates) 159
3. Fabio Jakobsen (Quick-Step Alpha Vinyl) 155

King of the Mountains

1. Simon Geschke (Cofidis) 43
2. Louis Meintjes (Intermarche–Wanty–Gobert Materiaux) 39
3. Jonas Vingegaard (Jumbo-Visma) 36

Jonas Vingegaard's attack paid off in style as the Dane took the lead in the Tour de France, severely denting Tadej Pogacar's hopes.

Wednesday's 152kilometre route through the Alps looked set to be crucial in the general classification standings, though few would have predicted this outcome up the Col du Granon.

Pogacar seemed in complete control of the GC and was expected to maintain his advantage, such is his proficiency up the slopes.

Yet led by Primoz Roglic and Wout van Aert, Jumbo-Visma attacked early and lured Pogacar and his fellow UAE Team Emirates riders into responding.

Those early moves seemed to have backfired, with Pogacar and team-mate Rafal Majka looking strong heading onto the final climb, but it all fell apart for the two-time reigning champion when Vingegaard sensed a weakness and lodged a brilliantly timed attack 5km out from the finish, leaving the yellow jersey in his wake.

Geraint Thomas soon followed suit, making his own dent in the GC standings, as for the first time in his career Pogacar showed real vulnerability. 

While Pogacar floundered, Vingegaard wrapped up a sensational ride by overtaking Romain Bardet, who is up to second in the GC, and Nairo Quintana to seal his maiden Grand Tour stage triumph.

Thomas pushed over in fourth, with David Gaudu and Adam Yates getting up to the summit before Pogacar – his yellow jersey unzipped and flapping – limped across the line, close to three minutes behind Vingegaard.

"It's really incredible, it's hard for me to put words on," said Vingegaard, whose lead over Pogacar in the GC standings is well over two minutes. "This is what I dreamt of, always, a stage in the Tour. Now the yellow jersey, incredible.

"We made the plan from the start of the day, you can see what it was, we wanted to make it a super hard race in my favour, the favour of Primoz. I took a lot of time today, but I'd never have done that without my team-mates, they were all incredibly strong today.

"On the last climb I was thinking if I don't try, I'm not going to win. Second place is a nice result, but I had this last year, now I want to try to go for the victory." 

Van der Poel calls it quits

One of the big names at this year's tour, Mathieu van der Poel, has failed to really get going and he called it a day on stage 11, abandoning the race. It has been a frustrating stint for the Dutchman, who impressed on his Tour de France debut last year. He was dropped on the Lacets de Montvernier, after initially getting involved in the early breakaway.

STAGE RESULTS

1. Jonas Vingegaard (Jumbo-Visma) 4:18:02
2. Nairo Quintana (Team Arkea–Samsic) +0:59
3. Romain Bardet (Team DSM) +1:10
4. Geraint Thomas (INEOS Grenadiers) +1:38
5. David Gaudu (Groupama–FDJ) +2:04

CLASSIFICATION STANDINGS 

General Classification

1. Jonas Vingegaard (Jumbo-Visma) 41:29:59
2. Romain Bardet (Team DSM) +2:16
3. Tadej Pogacar (UAE-Team Emirates) +2:22

Points Classification

1. Wout van Aert (Jumbo-Visma) 304
2. Fabio Jakobsen (Quick-Step Alpha Vinyl) 155
3. Tadej Pogacar (UAE-Team Emirates) 148

King of the Mountains

1. Simon Geschke (Cofidis) 43
2. Pierre Latour (TotalEnergies) 35
3. Jonas Vingegaard (Jumbo-Visma) 30

An "overwhelmed" Bob Jungels expressed his delight after clinching the first Tour de France stage win of his career with a brilliant solo effort over the mountains to Chatel.

Having made his move on the penultimate climb of stage nine, the Luxembourger broke clear and made his advantage count after leading for over 60 kilometres on Sunday.

Home favourite Thibaut Pinot attempted to close the gap but ultimately fell to fourth after attacking too late in the day, as Spanish duo Jonathan Castroviejo and Carlos Verona came in second and third.

Tadej Pogacar finished fifth to retain the yellow jersey at the end of a terrific week for the reigning champion, who earlier claimed back-to-back victories over stages six and seven to take control of Le Tour.

But Sunday belonged to AG2R Citroen rider Jungels, who was left stunned by his incredible triumph, declaring: "I am just overwhelmed, to be honest.

"This is huge. This is what I came here for. I know this means a lot for the team.

"After a couple of years struggling and a very tough year last year, to take the victory this way, it's my style of racing, so I'm just super happy.

"I saw that my shape was getting better day by day. To do something like this, I knew I had to do it from quite far, because with the last climb I would not have been able to ride away from the favourites.

"Being in the mix and winning a stage is a big step, and today I took all the risks I could and it happened. Thanks to my team and everyone who believed in me over the last years."

Victory marked a significant comeback for Jungels, who missed out on last year's Tour and the Tokyo Olympics after being diagnosed with endofibrosis, a narrowing of the arteries. He was also a doubt for this year's race after testing positive for COVID-19 in the build up.

Welcome to the Jungels: Brilliant Bob secures maiden Tour triumph 

Jungels' triumph represented his first at the Tour de France and just his second at a Grand Tour after he won over stage 15 of the 2017 Giro d'Italia.

Meanwhile, the 29-year-old also became the first rider from Luxembourg to win a Tour de France stage since Andy Schleck triumphed over stage 18 in 2011.

STAGE RESULTS

1. Bob Jungels (AG2R Citroen) 4:46:39
2. Jonathan Castroviejo (Ineos Grenadiers) +0:22
3. Carlos Verons (Movistar) +0:26
4. Thibaut Pinot (Groupama-FDJ) +0:40
5. Tadej Pogacar (UAE Team Emirates) +0:49

CLASSIFICATION STANDINGS 

General Classification

1. Tadej Pogacar (UAE Team Emirates) 33:43:44
2. Jonas Vingegaard (Jumbo-Visma) +0:39
3. Geraint Thomas (Ineos Grenadiers) +1:17

Points Classification

1. Wout van Aert (Jumbo-Visma) 284
2. Fabio Jakobsen (Quick-Step Alpha Vinyl) 149
3. Tadej Pogacar (UAE Team Emirates) 139

King of the Mountains

1. Simon Geschke (Cofidis) 19
2. Bob Jungels (AG2R Citroen) 18
3. Thibaut Pinot (Groupama-FDJ) 14

Wout van Aert tightened his hold on the green jersey as he won stage eight of the Tour de France after a dramatic final sprint in Lausanne.

The Dutchman claimed his second stage victory of this year's tour, holding off Michael Matthews and overall race leader Tadej Pogacar to add to his triumph in Calais on Tuesday.

The Jumbo-Visma rider also extended his lead at the top of the points classification, moving 115 points clear of Quick-Step Alpha Vinyl's Fabio Jakobsen.

There was drama after just nine kilometres from the start in Dole, with Kevin Vermaerke forced to pull after falling in a crash that also affected Pogacar and 2018 yellow jersey winner Geraint Thomas.

Pogacar – winner of stages six and seven – recovered and eventually put himself in contention heading into the final sprint.

However, the two-time champion appeared to hesitate at the vital moment after Matthews launched the surge, but Van Aert timed his move to perfection to claim victory.

"Today was a big chance to take a lot of points," Van Aert said. "I'm really glad my team put everything in it to chase down the breakaway.

"It was a really tough climb. Everything going uphill was really steep, so I had to fight to stay in the wheel of Pogacar and his team-mates.

"I knew if I could stay at the wheel that the sprint was a little bit flatter, so I was waiting for that moment.

"Winning a stage in the Tour de France – no matter where it is – is nice."

Earlier in the day, Pogacar's UAE Team Emirates team-mate Vegard Stake Laengen and Geoffrey Bouchard (AG2R Citroen) became the first casualties of this year's race having tested positive for COVID-19.

Dutch delight for Van Aert

Van Aert moved level with Pogacar by claiming his eighth stage victory overall at the Tour de France.

And with the Dutch rider doubling his tally for the season, he has now won multiple stages in each of the last three years.

STAGE RESULTS

1. Wout van Aert (Jumbo-Visma) 4:13:06
2. Michael Matthews (Team BikeExchange-Jayco) same time
3. Tadej Pogacar (UAE Team Emirates) same time
4. Andreas Kron (Lotto-Soudal) same time
5. Alberto Bettiol (EF Education-EasyPost) same time

CLASSIFICATION STANDINGS

General Classification

1. Tadej Pogacar (UAE Team Emirates) 28:56:16
2. Jonas Vingegaard (Jumbo-Visma) +0:39
3. Geraint Thomas (INEOS Grenadiers) +1:14

Points Classification

1. Wout van Aert (Jumbo-Visma) 264
2. Fabio Jakobsen (Quick-Step Alpha Vinyl) 149
3. Tadej Pogacar (UAE Team Emirates) 128

King of the Mountains

1. Magnus Cort Nielsen (EF Education-EasyPost) 11
2. Tadej Pogacar (UAE Team Emirates) 10
3. Jonas Vingegaard (Jumbo-Visma) 8

Tadej Pogacar hailed a "special day" at the Tour de France after digging deep to edge out Jonas Vingegaard in an enthralling finish, as he extended his overall lead with back-to-back stage victories.

Defending champion Pogacar took the yellow jersey with a terrific ride over a mammoth stage six on Thursday, but was pushed hard by both Vingegaard and Lennard Kamna en route to La Planche des Belles Filles the following day.

Kamna was the first to make his move in pursuit of a breakaway win, going clear before being hauled in by Vingegaard on a gruelling 24-per-cent climb.

But with the Dane looking set to claim his first-ever stage win at the Tour, the imperious Pogacar snatched the lead with just 25 metres remaining in a captivating finish, extending his general classification lead in the process.

Having returned to the site of his major breakthrough in 2020, where Pogacar took the yellow jersey en route to his first Tour de France title, the Slovenian said he had been particularly focused for the race's first mountain stage.

"It was really, really difficult, especially in the last part where Jonas attacked, he was so strong," Pogacar said. "But my boys were working all day, so I had to push to the finish line. 

"It was a really special day. We opened a foundation today for cancer research, so I wore special shoes just for today, and I'm really happy proud to take this win on Planche des Belles Filles.

"It was in my mind already for a really, really long time, maybe since the route was announced, and it was difficult to win today.

"I think right now Vingegaard is one of the strongest climbers in the world, probably the best climber in the world, and a really compact rider with a really strong team around him."

While Vingegaard was second over the line, Kamna dropped to fourth behind Primoz Roglic, with 2018 champion Geraint Thomas following in fifth to move into the top three of the general classification rankings.

Pogacar doubles up to strengthen grasp on lead

Pogacar's seemingly unshakeable grasp on the Tour de France's yellow jersey was strengthened as he posted back-to-back stage wins. 

The Slovenian has now won two more stages at the Tour than any other rider since the start of 2020 (Wout van Aert is second with six), as he replicated his consecutive triumphs over stages 17 and 18 en route to last year's title.

STAGE RESULTS

1. Tadej Pogacar (UAE Team Emirates) 3:58:40
2. Jonas Vingegaard (Jumbo-Visma) same time 
3. Primoz Roglic (Jumbo-Visma) +0:12
4. Lennard Kamna (Bora-Hansgrohe) +0:14
5. Geraint Thomas (Ineos Grenadiers) +0:14

CLASSIFICATION STANDINGS

General Classification

1. Tadej Pogacar (UAE Team Emirates) 24:43:14
2. Jonas Vingegaard (Jumbo-Visma) +0:35
3. Geraint Thomas (Ineos Grenadiers) +1:10

Points Classification

1. Wout van Aert (Jumbo-Visma) 203
2. Fabio Jakobsen (Quick-Step Alpha Vinyl) 140
3. Tadej Pogacar (UAE Team Emirates) 108

King of the Mountains

1. Magnus Cort Nielsen (EF Education-EasyPost) 11
2. Tadej Pogacar (UAE Team Emirates) 10
3. Jonas Vingegaard (Jumbo-Visma) 8

Tadej Pogacar declared each of his victories feels better than the last after claiming the yellow jersey with a thrilling win over stage six of the Tour de France, stepping up his bid for a third consecutive triumph in the race.

The 23-year-old attacked at the tail end of the climb into Longwy, accelerating away from the peloton to finish ahead of Michael Matthews and David Gaudu and snatch the overall lead from Wout van Aert.

Van Aert did not give up the yellow jersey without a fight, at one stage looking set for an extraordinary solo victory after breaking clear to establish a sizeable lead with 25 kilometres remaining. 

But the Belgian was eventually reeled in by a much-reduced peloton 11km from the finish, with Pogacar's lung-busting late effort allowing him to see off Matthews, Gaudu and the rest of the pack, clinching victory on the race's longest stage. 

With bonus seconds applied, Pogacar now boasts a four-second overall lead over Neilson Powless, and the Slovenian expressed his delight after sealing a victory which looked unlikely for much of the stage.

"Every time I win it's even better than before," he beamed after crossing the line. "It was such a hard day from the start. The first two hours were so crazy.

"The strongest guy was in the break. Many teams were pulling the peloton strongly, our team did it as well. In the end, the peloton was stronger [than Van Aert], but we were not sure to catch him.

"I was feeling good. My team did an incredibly good job to put me in a perfect position. It was not a pure sprint after we rode the last two climbs above threshold.

"I guess I had good legs to push in the end. I don't mind taking the yellow jersey, but I'm above all happy to take the stage win. Everything else is bonus."

Pogacar remains the man to beat

Pogacar began this year's edition of the Tour looking to become just the second rider to triumph on each of his first three appearances in the race (after Eddy Merckx won on each of his first five outings between 1969 and 1974).

While he had to remain patient after Van Aert accelerated away in the early stages here, his triumph – the fifth stage win at the Tour of his career – demonstrated he remains the rider to beat.

STAGE RESULTS

1. Tadej Pogacar (UAE Team Emirates) 4:27:13
2. Michael Matthews (BikeExchange-Jayco) same time
3. David Gaudu (Groupama-FDJ)
4. Tom Pidcock (Ineos Grenadiers)
5. Nairo Quintana (Arkea Samsic) 

CLASSIFICATION STANDINGS 

General Classification

1. Tadej Pogacar (UAE Team Emirates) 20:44:44
2. Neilson Powless (EF Education-EasyPost) +0:04
3. Jonas Vingegaard (Jumbo-Visma) +0:31

Points Classification

1. Wout van Aert (Jumbo-Visma) 198
2. Fabio Jakobsen (Quick-Step Alpha Vinyl) 137
3. Jasper Philipsen (Alpecin-Deceuninck) 89

King of the Mountains

1. Magnus Cort Nielsen (EF Education-EasyPost) 11
2. Alexis Vuillermoz (TotalEnergies) 2
3. Wout van Aert (Jumbo-Visma) 2

Simon Clarke admitted he surprised even himself after edging out Taco van der Hoorn to win an action-packed stage five of the 2022 Tour de France.

The Israel-Premier Tech rider landed the victory from the breakaway on the cobbles of Arenberg on Wednesday, a day in which the General Classification was shaken up.

Jumbo-Visma endured a day to forget in the north-east of France, with Primoz Roglic crashing late on to see his title hopes dented and Wout Van Aert also losing ground.

While Roglic finished just under three minutes off the pace, race leader Van Aert recovered from an early crash of his own to finish just 13 seconds behind rival Tadej Pogacar.

UAE Team Emirates rider Pogacar, seeking a third Tour de France crown, rode clear of the main field to shake up the GC standings.

The day ultimately belonged to Clarke, though, with the Australian beating Van der Hoorn in a photo finish in a dramatic 157-kilometre race from Lille that went the distance.

Five men broke away from the pack and Clarke, who recently contemplated early retirement, dug deep to nudge his wheel over the line for his first Tour de France triumph.

"After the winter I had when I had no team, to then have Israel ring me and say we'll give you a chance, it gives you a reality check to make the most of every chance," Clarke said.

"I still can't believe I got it on the line. Taco was well ahead of me with less than 50m to go, both legs were camping and I just lined up the biggest throw I could possibly do.

"I just had to pray it was enough. I need to watch the replay – I still don't quite believe it!"

 

Roglic concedes ground on Pogacar

The leading group was reduced to five men with around 26km to go and it was Clarke who saw the job through ahead of Van der Hoorn, with Edvald Boasson Hagen rounding off the podium.

Stage five was a big one in terms of the GC, with defending champion Pogacar making up two minutes on Roglic to underline his status as favourite for another title.

STAGE RESULT 

1. Simon Clarke (Israel-Premier Tech) 3:13:35
2. Taco van der Hoorn (Intermarche-Wanty-Gobert) same time
3. Edvald Boasson Hagen (TotalEnergies) +0:02
4. Neilson Powless (EF Education–EasyPost) +0.04
5. Magnus Cort Nielsen (EF Education–EasyPost) +0.30


CLASSIFICATION STANDINGS

General Classification

1. Wout van Aert (Team Jumbo-Visma) 16:17:22
2. Neilson Powless (EF Education–EasyPost) +0:13
3. Edvald Boasson Hagen (TotalEnergies) +0:14

Points Classification

1. Wout van Aert (Team Jumbo-Visma) 178
2. Fabio Jakobsen (Quick-Step Alpha Vinyl) 126
3. Magnus Cort Nielsen (EF Education–EasyPost) 86

King of the Mountains

1. Magnus Cort Nielsen (EF Education–EasyPost) 11
2. Wout van Aert (Team Jumbo-Visma) 1

Dylan Groenewegen snatched victory from Wout van Aert on the finish line to bring a dramatic end to the Tour de France's three-stage stint in Denmark.

The caravan packs up and heads to France ahead of stage four on Tuesday, and much of Sunday's 182-kilometre race from Vejle to Sonderborg was calm and controlled.

Yet a crash with just under 10km to go that almost caught two-time champion Tadej Pogacar sparked a frantic conclusion.

Fabio Jakobsen, the sprint favourite who triumphed on Saturday, had another fantastic lead-out from Michael Morkov, yet the Quick-Step Alpha Vinyl rider got caught in the pack.

Lotto Soudal's sprint hope Caleb Ewan was likewise frustrated as Peter Sagan took his line, and it looked as though he would compete with Van Aert, donning the yellow jersey after successive second-place finishes.

However, Groenewegen caught the pair cold, with a last-gasp lunge just nudging his front wheel across the line ahead of Van Aert, while Sagan was beaten to third by Jasper Philipsen.

Groenewegen has now won five stages at Le Tour, yet this one is perhaps the most meaningful, with the Dutchman having been banned for nine months in 2020 for causing a crash that left Jakobsen in a medically induced coma.

"I want to say thank you to my team and my family and friends for getting me back to the Tour in good shape. It's beautiful," said Groenewegen, who suffered a broken collar bone and needed facial reconstruction as a result of that collision at the 2020 Tour de Pologne, for which he subsequently apologised.

"Not physically a struggle, but mentally it was a hard time of course. This for my wife and my son, it means a lot to me."

Van Aert fails to find the funny side as Pogacar gets lucky

Having been pipped to the post by Jakobsen on Saturday, Team Jumbo-Visma rider Van Aert was frustrated by an even finer margin this time around, though can be consoled by the fact he retained the yellow jersey and has a 17-point lead in the points classification.

"It's not funny anymore," Van Aert quipped. "To finish second three days in a row!"

Pogacar will be looking to get the famous jersey off Van Aert later in the race as he hunts for his third straight Tour de France triumph, though the Slovenian was fortunate that he escaped the late crash. His back wheel was clipped, but he just managed to keep his balance.

STAGE RESULT 

1. Dylan Groenewegen (Team BikeExchange–Jayco) 4:11:33
2. Wout van Aert (Team Jumbo-Visma) same time
3. Jasper Philipsen (Alpecin-Deceuninck) same time
4. Peter Sagan (Team TotalEnergies) same time
5. Fabio Jakobsen (Quick-Step Alpha Vinyl) same time

CLASSIFICATION STANDINGS

General Classification

1. Wout van Aert (Team Jumbo-Visma) 9:01:17
2. Yves Lampaert (Quick-Step Alpha Vinyl) +0:07
3. Tadej Pogacar (UAE Team Emirates) +0:14

Points Classification

1. Wout van Aert (Team Jumbo-Visma) 107
2. Fabio Jakobsen (Quick-Step Alpha Vinyl) 90
3. Dylan Groenewegen (Team BikeExchange–Jayco) 60

King of the Mountains

1. Magnus Cort Nielsen (EF Education–EasyPost) 6

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