Home » the hunt for seconds between Jonas Vingegaard and Tadej Pogacar benefits Carlos Rodriguez

the hunt for seconds between Jonas Vingegaard and Tadej Pogacar benefits Carlos Rodriguez

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the hunt for seconds between Jonas Vingegaard and Tadej Pogacar benefits Carlos Rodriguez

Dane Jonas Vingegaard (Jumbo-Visma) ahead of Slovenian Tadej Pogacar (UAE Emirates) during the 14ᵉ stage of the Tour de France, between Annemasse and Morzine (Haute-Savoie), July 15, 2023. BERNARD PAPON / AP

The scene takes place 1.5 kilometers from the top of the Col de Joux Plane, the final ascent of the 14th stage of the Tour de France. Jonas Vingegaard has just come back up to Tadej Pogacar, who had attacked two kilometers earlier. The two men drive side by side, look at each other, gauge each other. The contenders for the final victory “shoulder to shoulder”in accordance with the wishes of Christian Prudhomme, the director of the event.

The first alpine day of this 2023 vintage, Saturday July 15, finally leaves the yellow jersey and its rival UAE Emirates back to back. On arrival in Morzine (Haute-Savoie), with the game of bonuses, the Slovenian only conceded a second behind the leader of the Jumbo-Visma; he now has ten in the general classification.

So focused on their duel, they let Carlos Rodriguez get away on the last descent. The 22-year-old Spaniard offers his first victory on the Grande Boucle. This is the second success for his team, Ineos-Grenadiers, the day after Michal Kwiatkowski’s ride to the Grand Colombier (Ain). Carlos Rodriguez thus climbs to third place overall, 4 min 43 s from the yellow jersey, ahead of the Australian Jai Hindley (Bora-Hansgrohe) by one second.

Blocked by two motorcycles

Tadej Pogacar and Jonas Vingegaard finished second and third respectively on the day. As the riders return to their training coaches, one question is on everyone’s lips: could it have been otherwise? To fully understand, you have to go back to the last kilometers of the Col de Joux Plane (11.6 kilometers at 8.5%, out of category). Sepp Kuss sets the pace for his leader in Jumbo-Visma. Tadej Pogacar, he is in the wheels of the yellow jersey. The Slovenian has a closed face – something rare enough to be reported.

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Then the UAE Emirates rider turns to his teammate, Adam Yates. A few words, a nod. The Brit leaves, the American is released. 3.7 kilometers from the summit, Tadej Pogacar then launched the offensive. He takes a lead of twenty meters over Jonas Vingegaard… without managing to get rid of him. The Dane ends up picking up. “I was going at my pace, I didn’t want to put myself in the red, I did what I could do, and luckily I was able to catch up”explains the yellow jersey.

Read also Tour de France 2023: Carlos Rodriguez wins in Morzine, Jonas Vingegaard and Tadej Pogacar neutralize each other

In trying to crack the Dane, Tadej Pogacar also had in his sights the bonuses allocated at the top of the out-of-category pass. Unfortunately, when launching an attack to try to recover the precious seconds, he was blocked by two press motorbikes, slowed down by the crowd closing in on the road. The Slovenian is forced to sit down. ” That she is two meters in front is unacceptable.fulminates Matxin Fernandez, sports director of the Emirati training. « [Jonas Vingegaard et Tadej Pogacar] are more or less at the same level, that’s why we had to get every second. In my view, [le Danois] wanted to attack, but Tadej anticipated. Is the result distorted? It’s possible, of course, we’ll never know, because it’s over, we have to look ahead”prefers to think Mauro Gianetti, his general manager.

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