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Sport Rip-roaring Tour de France a litany of cautionary tales

05:25  21 september  2020
05:25  21 september  2020 Source:   msn.com

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Cycling's rescheduled Tour de France made a proud entry into Paris on Sunday with its boyish champion Tadej Pogacar the figurehead of a storied And that ever constant tension provided the drumbeat for the series of cautionary tales and the modern day David slaying Goliath re-enactment

PARIS, Sept 21 — Cycling’s rescheduled Tour de France made a proud entry into Paris yesterday with its boyish champion Tadej Pogacar the figurehead of a And that ever constant tension provided the drumbeat for the series of cautionary tales and the modern day David slaying Goliath reenactment

Cycling's rescheduled Tour de France made a proud entry into Paris Sunday with its boyish champion Tadej Pogacar the figurehead of a storied 21-day extravaganza crowned by a twist in the tail.

a group of people sitting around a baseball field: Disconsolate Roglic after Saturday's defining time trial © Christophe Petit Tesson Disconsolate Roglic after Saturday's defining time trial

Many predicted the Covid-19 pandemic would prevent the race making it the 3,400 kilometres from the Mediterranean city of Nice to the French capital.

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Cycling's rescheduled Tour de France made a proud entry into Paris Sunday with its boyish champion Tadej Pogacar the figurehead of a storied 21-day extravaganza crowned by a twist in the tail. Many predicted the Covid-19 pandemic would prevent the race making it the 3,400 kilometres from the

Cycling's rescheduled Tour de France made a proud entry into Paris Sunday with its boyish champion Tadej Pogacar the figurehead of a storied 21-day extravaganza crowned by a twist in the tail. Many predicted the Covid-19 pandemic would prevent the race making it the 3,400 kilometres from the

And that ever constant tension provided the drumbeat for the series of cautionary tales and the modern day David slaying Goliath reenactment that unfolded before a stunned global audience.

Saturday's gut-wrenching penultimate stage time trial saw the 21-year-old Pogacar rip the yellow jersey from his 30-year-old Slovenian compatriot Primoz Roglic on the slopes of the Planche des Belles Filles climb.

a person wearing a helmet: Bernal's title defence undone by a bad back © Anne-Christine POUJOULAT Bernal's title defence undone by a bad back

Dressed from head to toe in black, Roglic looked a broken man as the dust settled.

"I cried, I'll cry again," said the leader of Dutch team Jumbo-Visma.

"I just seemed to have no power," he explained.

But the stark warning was written large in the Tour de France official programme.

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Cycling's rescheduled Tour de France made a proud entry into Paris Sunday with its boyish champion Tadej Pogacar the figurehead of a storied 21-day extravaganza crowned by a twist in the tail. Many predicted the Covid-19 pandemic would prevent the race making it the 3

Paris (AFP) - Cycling’s rescheduled Tour de France made a proud entry into Paris Sunday with its boyish champion Tadej Pogacar the figurehead of a And that ever constant tension provided the drumbeat for the series of cautionary tales and the modern day David slaying Goliath reenactment

"Anybody with little left in the tank could lose two or three minutes here," the race designer himself, Thierry Gouvenou, predicted.

a baseball player holding a bat: Pogacar - 'the kid from Slovenia' © KENZO TRIBOUILLARD Pogacar - 'the kid from Slovenia'

Pogacar won three stages but was racing with a depleted team on his first Tour de France.

So just how did the team that had appeared to dominate a Tour, destroying the hopes of the home nation and ending the reign of Dave Brailsford's British outfit Ineos, let victory slip from their grasp?

All-time great Eddy Merckx didn't mince his words.

"They were asking for it riding defensively like that. Imagine letting yourself get taken like that," said the five-time Tour de France winner.

Jumbo failed to twist the knife with Pogacar trailing behind at the end of the first week, on a stage their powerhouse roller Wout Van Aert won a bunch sprint.

A stage win that unwittingly undid their best laid plans.

Pogacar poised for Tour glory after stunning Roglic

  Pogacar poised for Tour glory after stunning Roglic Pogacar poised for Tour glory after stunning RoglicRONCHAMPS, France (Reuters) - Slovenia's Tadej Pogacar pulled off a major upset at the Tour de France by stunning compatriot Primoz Roglic to claim the overall leader’s yellow jersey with a monumental victory in the final individual time trial on Saturday.

Cycling’s rescheduled Tour de France made a proud entry into Paris Sunday with its boyish And that ever constant tension provided the drumbeat for the series of cautionary tales and the modern day Saturday’s gut-wrenching penultimate stage time trial saw the 21-year-old Pogacar rip the yellow

Cautionary Tales - Making Of. Us. Oscar Winner ~ Short film about love and passage of time | Father and Daughter - by M. Dudok de Wit. KIS KIS - keep it short.

- Ineos rethink -

The Jumbo horror story provides Brailsford with convenient cover but his Ineos team can point to a number of mitigating circumstances.

a close up of a flag: Tadej Pogacar celebrates his remarkable Tour de France triumph © Anne-Christine POUJOULAT Tadej Pogacar celebrates his remarkable Tour de France triumph

The 2019 champion, Colombia's Egan Bernal, came into the race nursing a bad back, and was robbed of his two key mountain sherpas when a deluge in Nice saw Pavel Sivakov and Richard Carapaz fall heavily.

It must also be said the team were mourning the loss of one of their own, after the untimely passing of sports director Nicolas Portal in March.

Brailsford opened up to AFP about this loss in Pau on stage nine, and the impression was of a man whose heart might not have been fully on the task at hand.

Bernal's collapse on a mountainside with Jumbo skipping towards a summit was agony to watch.

Brailsford withdrew his leader and refocused the team that earned some scant recompense on the final Alpine stage with a stage win and the polka dot jersey.

- French capitulation -

The French cycling community were lulled into believing their beloved but emotional climber Thibaut Pinot was about to finally deliver.

He too fell in the deluge at Nice where a fellow rider hit him square in the back. He struggled on into the Pyrenees but soon fell off the pace.

"There have been too many failures," he said when his 2020 chances were over. "This might be it for me".

Julian Alaphilippe did get the yellow jersey on stage two in the hills behind Nice, but was stripped of it a couple of stages later with a petty time penalty for taking on water in the wrong place.

Pogacar's crushing of Roglic on the Planche des Belles Filles is not only one of the sports stories of the year, it also marks a generational shift to the ascendency of younger riders, following as it does the now dated story of Bernal's success a year ago at 22.

"I'm just a kid from Slovenia," the Tour's youngest post-World War II winner said on Saturday, unaware of the extent to which his life is likely to change.

dmc/nr/mw

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