BARCELONA, July 17 (.) –
The Belgian cyclist Jasper Philipsen (Alpecin-Deceuninck) has been awarded this Sunday the fifteenth stage of the Tour de France to the sprint, a flat day of 202.5 kilometers between Rodez and Carcassonne without changes in the general classification, so the Danish Jonas Vingegaard (Jumbo-Visma) retains the yellow jersey for another day.
Philipsen, with a time of 4 hours, 27 minutes and 27 seconds, confirmed his status as a sprinter by beating the green jersey of the points classification Wout van Aert (Jumbo-Visma), who was on the verge of his third partial victory , in the same way as the Danish Mads Pedersen (Trek-Segafredo), who fought to win his second stage.
The Belgian opened his locker and got his well-deserved reward after scoring no less than eight ‘Top3’ positions in the last two ‘Grande Boucle’. In addition, Philipsen managed to redeem himself from his bad experience in the fourth stage by reaching the finish line thinking that he had won. Precisely, Van Aert snatched the victory from him on that day and this time the one from Alpecin managed to beat his compatriot.
The day’s breakout was made by Nils Politt (Bora-Hansgrohe) and Mikkel Honoré (Quick-Step Alpha Vinyl). Alongside them, Van Aert was present for the opening kilometres, although the Belgian was instructed to cease his effort and return to the peloton.
There were spillovers in the pack looking to join the trio of escapees. However, Alpecin-Deceuninck, BikeExchange-Jayco and Trek-Segafredo applied to fail. Finally, Frenchmen Benjamin Thomas (Cofidis) and Alexis Gougeard (B&B Hotels-KTM) went on the offensive.
The indecision of the pursuers made Thomas dream of the stage, who managed to get away from Gougeard, although 500 meters from the finish he was neutralized by a massive peloton that fought in the sprint for victory and dropped Philipsen by centimeters.
The day went smoothly for the men in the general classification, although the great victim was none other than the leader Vingegaard. In a matter of hours he lost two teammates, including Slovenian Primoz Roglic, who did not start with physical problems and left the Tour for the second consecutive year, and Steven Kruijswijk, who left in an ambulance after falling.
Along with Kruijswik, Wout van Aert, Jakob Fuglsang and Martijn Tusveld also fell, although with greater fortune than the Dutchman. For this reason, the Jumbo-Visma managed to get through a difficult day in which they reduced their numbers to six runners and in which their leader also hit the ground 58 kilometers from the finish line, although he recovered without much problem.
Thus, the fight with Tadej Pogacar (UAE Team Emirates) is even after the two-time champion of the French round previously lost his domestiques Vegard Stake Laengen and George Bennett.
The loss of Primoz Roglic shows his frustration with the Tour, after leaving after his fall in the fifth stage. In fact, the Slovenian had lost 33 minutes and 39 seconds in the general classification. Also, the coronavirus has affected cyclists again and this time those affected have been Magnus Cort (EF Education-EasyPost) and Simon Clarke (Israel-Premier Tech), both stage winners and positive for COVID-19.
This Monday, the race will take a break before facing the final week, which will start with a mid-mountain stage between Carcassone and Foix over 178.5 kilometers, favorable for the attackers who have reserved strength for the third week in taking contact with the Pyrenees.
1. Jasper Philipsen(BEL/Alpecin-Deceuninck) 4:27:17.
2. Wout van Aert (BEL/Jumbo-Visma) same time.
3. Mads Pedersen (DIN/Trek-Segafredo) mt
4. Peter Sagan(SVK/TotalEnergies) mt
5. Danny van Poppel(NED/Bora-Hansgrohe) mt
1. Jonas Vingegaard (DIN/Jumbo-Visma) 59:58:28.
2. Tadej Pogacar (SVN/UAE Team Emirates) at 2:22.
3. Geraint Thomas (GBR/INEOS Grenadiers) 2:43.
4. Romain Bardet (FRA/Team DSM) 3:01.
5. Adam Yates (GBR/INEOS Grenadiers) 4:06.
10. ENRIC MAS (ESP/Movistar Team) 9:58.