It does Tadej Pogacar good that he was able to show his best side in the penultimate Tour de France stage on Saturday. After days of setbacks, he beat yellow jersey wearer Jonas Vingegaard in the battle for the stage victory.
Pogacar saw his chances of the overall victory go up in smoke in recent days because he himself was not good enough and because of Vingegaard’s class. In Saturday’s mountain stage he took a little revenge.
“I was finally myself again. It was very nice to feel so good again from start to finish, after days in which it was mainly suffering. I am very happy that I was able to finish it,” said Pogacar after the finish in Le Markstein.
“I waited for Adam Yates in the final. Just like his brother (Simon Yates, ed.), he was very good again and put me off very well. That made it easier for me. I am very happy with the work the team has done again.”
It was the second victory of this Tour de France for the 24-year-old Pogacar. He previously won the sixth stage; then there seemed to be a very exciting battle for the Tour win in the making.
Vingegaard, who crossed the finish line second on Saturday, is now unofficially certain of his second Tour victory in a row. The Dane from Jumbo-Visma can finally cheer in Paris on Sunday.