TOUR DE FRANCE - STAGE 17 GUILLAUME MARTIN WITHSTOOD THE SHOCK!
You have to see it to believe it. The end of the 17th stage - the Col de la Loze is an experience in itself. A snake of bitumen that plays with the mountain, with sections that occasionally exceed 20%.
Guillaume Martin strengthens his position as the 1st Frenchman
The peloton has fought against him after climbing the Col de la Madeleine. Guillaume Martin, who had already seen this final climb last July, was true to himself: he gave his all and kept the pace until the end. On the finish line, he came 14th at 3 min 59 sec behind the winner of the day, Miguel Angel Lopez.
In the general classification, the leader of the Cofidis team is close to the 'top 10', in 11th place, 10 min 33 sec behind the yellow jersey, Primoz Roglic. "Guillaume can be proud of his climb, he has shown once more that he is close to the tempo of the best riders", says Thierry Marichal, one of the sports directors of the team. The rider from Normandy takes the opportunity to consolidate his position as 1st Frenchman of this Tour de France: he has more than 10 minutes of advantage against the 2nd Frenchman, Warren Barguil.
All the team came right on time
Despite the difficulty of today's stage, all the Cofidis riders made it to the finish line on time, a real achievement for the sprinters - Elia Viviani, Simone Consonni and Christophe Laporte - who will do everything they can to reach Paris next Sunday. After such a big effort, you have to pinch yourself to realize that it isn't over yet and that tomorrow it will start again, and it will be as challenging as it was today.
Tomorrow, five climbs are on the programme, including the climb of the plateau des Glières. "This stage could be even more demanding for the bodies", explains Thierry Marichal. “We'll have to hold on and resist even more, but it's worth it: at the end of this day, there will only be two stages left before reaching Paris.”
"It was an intense day again, just as we expected it to be. The Bahrain-Merida riders imposed a fast tempo at the foot of the col de la Madelaine, which caused considerable reduction in the size of the peloton. During the final climb, it went faster and faster. I was able to keep up the rhythm. I did my best until the end and I gave everything I could. There is no need to have any regrets or disappointment, especially as there are still some opportunities ahead".