The second full day in the Alps dished rain, cool temperatures, and searing climbs to the peloton on stage 9 of the 2021 Tour de France.
AG2R-Citrëon’s Ben O’Connor took top honors on the stage, while the GC favorites appeared to be content with KOM-hunting or conserving their resources.
Primož Roglič did not start the stage, having abandoned the Tour overnight. His compatriot Tadej Pogačar, resplendent in yellow, looked as strong as ever. And there are still two weeks of racing remaining.
Rain, cool temperatures, and steep ascents waited for the peloton.
EF Education-Nippo was active on the stage, with Rigoberto Urán looking to improve his GC standing.
The yellow jersey was easy to spot from a distance.
Pogačar stayed protected throughout the stage, knowing there are several more climbing tests to come.
Julian Alaphilippe — in the rainbow colors of the world road champion — did not contest for the stage.
Alpine backdrops always make for stunning backdrops.
American Sepp Kuss rode in support of Jonas Vingegaard. He may even have some stage-hunting opportunities in the remaining two weeks of the 2021 Tour de France.
Mark Cavendish, in green, was all smiles when he made the stage time cut.
Ben O’Connor of AG2R-Citröen won stage 9 of the 2021 Tour de France.
While O’Connor has won a stage of the Giro d’Italia, a Tour de France stage win may be the 25-year-old’s career-best achievement.
Tadej Pogačar went into the first rest day of 2021 Tour de France dressed in yellow.