Friday, July 14, 8:45 a.m. – 11:15 a.m. ET
ASO’s objective when designing stage 13 was “to encourage a fluid race in which the established hierarchy is likely to be challenged.” This explains the inclusion of an extremely short stage — just 101 kilometers — packed with difficulties, including the Mur de Péguère, with its sections at 18 percent. There are plenty of opportunities for attackers, while the tight time limit won’t leave the stragglers much room. It will be very spectacular, especially given it’s Bastille Day.
Stage 13: Barguil wins on Bastille Day
On the attack since kilometer zero Friday, Warren Barguil thrilled the French faithful with a win in stage 13 at the Tour de France in Foix. Fabio Aru successfully defended his overall lead on his first day in yellow.
“This just felt so good today,” said Barguil. “Alberto Contador went on the attack. I went on the outside of him and then back in, and I knew that I would be the fastest.
“Contador was my idol when I was younger. I never would have believed that I could do this a few years ago.”
Sunweb’s Barguil became the first Frenchman to win on the national holiday since David Moncoutié in 2005. In the sprint, Nairo Quintana (Movistar) was second. Alberto Contador (Trek-Segafredo), who helped initiate the winning move, finished third. Sky’s Mikel Landa rounded out the lead group of four. He moved up to fifth in the overall, 1:09 behind Aru.
Top-10, stage 13
1. Warren Barguil (FRA/SUN) in 2h36:29.
2. Nairo Quintana (COL/MOV) at 0:00.
3. Alberto Contador (ESP/TRE) 0:00.
4. Mikel Landa (ESP/SKY) 0:02.
5. Simon Yates (GBR/ORI) 1:39.
6. Daniel Martin (EIR/QST) 1:39.
7. Michal Kwiatkowski (POL/SKY) 1:48.
8. Christopher Froome (GBR/SKY) 1:48.
9. Fabio Aru (ITA/AST) 1:48.
10. Rigoberto Uran (COL/CAN) 1:48.
1. Fabio Aru (ITA/Astana) in 55h30:06.
2. Christopher Froome (GBR/SKY) at 0:06.
3. Romain Bardet (FRA/ALM) 0:25.
4. Rigoberto Uran (COL/CAN) 0:35.
5. Mikel Landa (ESP/SKY) 1:09.
6. Daniel Martin (EIR/QST) 1:32.
7. Simon Yates (GBR/ORI) 2:04.
8. Nairo Quintana (COL/MOV) 2:07.
9. Louis Meintjes (RSA/EAU) 4:51.
10. Alberto Contador (ESP/TRE) 5:22.
As anticipated, the peloton raced the short 101km stage aggressive from the word go. Barguil first escaped with compatriot Thomas Voeckler (Direct Energie).
BMC’s Alessandro de Marchi ended up off the front alone over the first categorized climb, Col de Latrape.
Behind, Contador and Barguil attacked in the final kilometer of the category 1 ascent. The former aimed to extend his lead in the king of the mountains classification. The latter was hoping for a miracle after a dismal first half at the Tour. Landa marked the move without hesitation.
“Yesterday was a tough day for me in the final,” said Sky’s Chris Froome. “Today I felt a lot better, we played a bit with our team because we had Mikel Landa, who’s not far back in the standings.
“It was perfect for us, Mikel was very strong — maybe in the next few days we can play even more with this.”
The trio caught de Marchi low on the next climb, Col d’Agnes, which was nearly twice the length of Latrape at 10km, averaging 8.2 percent. The two Spaniards, Contador and Landa, escaped and summited the second climb together.
In the group of GC favorites, Michal Kwiatkowski (Sky), Alexis Vuillermoz (Ag2r La Mondiale), and Nairo Quintana (Movistar) went away and joined Barguil.
Over the top of Col d’Agnes, Contador and Landa led the yellow jersey group by 2:29.
Quintana and Barguil joined the leading duo just before the top of the Mur de Peguere. Vuillermoz fell off the pace early on the 9.3km climb. Kwiatkowski decided to sit up and wait for Sky leader Chris Froome.
Into the final descent, Aru’s small group was 1:38 behind the four leaders.
Throughout the descent, the eight GC hopefuls probed each other with attacks.
Finally, Quick-Step’s Dan Martin made a move with 7km to go, and it stuck. Orica-Scott’s Simon Yates eventually joined the Irishman. Yates also leads the young rider classification.
In the final kilometer, Contador went early with 500 meters remaining. Barguil was quick to follow. He swept past the former Tour champ on a sharp right-hand corner and won the sprint handily.
After a 12-year drought, Barguil became the 16th Frenchman to win a Tour stage on Bastille Day.
Stage 14 could be another opportunity for Barguil’s Sunweb team. Saturday’s 181.5km stage favors a rider with a turn of speed who can handle hilly terrain, someone like Michael Matthews. Olympic champion Greg Van Avermaet will also be a favorite in the run to Rodez, hoping to redeem BMC Racing’s Tour after GC leader Richie Porte abandoned.