In what can only be described as one of the craziest days of racing I have ever witnessed, Tadej Pogačar — seemingly against all odds — upset race leader Primož Roglič to take over the yellow jersey just one day before the race returned to Paris and win his first Tour de France at the age of only 21.
But then the climb to La Planche des Belles Filles is like that—it always produces surprises! In fact, every time the Tour has come here since its first visit in 2012, the yellow jersey had changed hands.
The Planche — which is in the back yard of popular French rider Thibaut Pinot —i s just another one of the Tour’s new climbs, that it quickly creating its own legend.
Working La Planche des Belles Filles, however, is always complicated, as it is essentially a dead-end road in the remote part of Eastern France. Fans walk for miles to find a proper vantage spot and media hoping to be at the finish, must arrive early and get in place. Movement is limited. But so often, it is all worth while, as this steep climb always provides high drama.
And the drama reached new heights today, providing an outstanding ending for one of the most unprecedented Tours ever.