In photos: Basque glory
Sun, rain, mountains and the sea. The Tour of the Basque Country was one to enjo...
Primoz Roglic and Tom Dumoulin have made it through the second stage in the Tour de France without losing valuable time. The two leaders of Team Jumbo-Visma were well-positioned in the front all day by their teammates and finished the stage in the first chasing group, two seconds behind stage winner Julian Alaphilippe. The Frenchman was the fastest of a leading group of three riders.
For Dumoulin, the stage did not go without a hitch. The Dutchman crashed on the final climb, but managed to return quickly to the front with the help of Wout van Aert.
The stage with the Col de Colmiane, the Col de Turini and the Col d'Eze had a fast first hour of racing. Seven riders got in the day's breakaway, but were caught by Team Jumbo-Visma at the foot of the Col d'Eze. Robert Gesink, Wout van Aert, Sepp Kuss and George Bennett kept the pace high, after which the peloton quickly decreased. On the final climb, Roglic and Dumoulin maintained themselves in the first peloton.
“It was a bit of a stupid crash”, Dumoulin said. “I don't know exactly what happened. I looked over my left shoulder and at that moment Kwiatkowski came by and before I knew it I was on the ground. I have no pain, I just hit my knee a little bit. I think my knee will be okay. Luckily I was able to return to the peloton quickly.”
"It was a bit of a stupid crash"
Gesink was of great value and led the peloton for a long time in the final. “Our intention was to bring Primoz and Tom in a good position to the bottom of the climb. That worked out well. After that it did not go completely smoothly, but that is also part of cycling. You can't have everything under control. The most important thing is that the guys are very strong and that we are in a good position. And most of all we have a lot of confidence in them. Today, we took the initiative when we felt we needed to. And to get through these sections safely. It is also better to ride in the front than having to catch up.”
Sports director Frans Maassen concurred. “Tom's crash was a bit of a pity for us. As a result, we lost Wout who helped Tom to get going again. I don't think we could have competed for the stage win because there was no one left to chase behind those three. But the plan was to finish in the first group with Primoz and Tom and we succeeded. We were in control all day and we didn't do anything crazy. So in that respect the stage went well.”