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Tour de France Stage 20 Report, Results, Photos – Ion Izagirre Takes First TdF Stage Victory

by pedalmag.com
Ion Izaguirre  ©  Cor Vos
July 23, 2016 (Morzine, FRA) – Ion Izagirre claimed his first Tour de France stage victory as he arrived solo in Morzine after riding away from Vincenzo Nibali and Jarlinson Pantano in the downhill of col de Joux-Plane. Romain Bardet and Nairo Quintana took no risk to secured their spot on the final podium along with Chris Froome on the eve of the Parisian parade.

Chris Froome untouchable  ©  Cor Vos

30 riders in the lead, including Kreuziger and Sagan
175 riders started the second last stage of the 103rd Tour de France in Megève. A minute of silence was observed as a tribute to the victims of the shooting in Munich, Germany, the day before. Sylvain Chavanel (Direct Energie) was the first attacker of the day right after the flag off. A lead group was formed in several waves in the ascent to the col des Aravis.

Roman Kreuziger  ©  Cor Vos
After 20km of racing, Sergio Henao (Sky), Imanol Erviti, Ion Izagirre and Nelson Oliveira (Movistar), Vincenzo Nibali and Jakob Fuglsang (Astana), Peter Sagan and Roman Kreuziger (Tinkoff), Ben Gastauer, Cyril Gautier and Alexis Gougeard (AG2R-La Mondiale), Wilco Kelderman and George Bennett (Lotto-Jumbo), Frank Schleck and Jasper Stuyven (Trek), Jarlinson Pantano (IAM), Pierre Rolland, Tom-Jelte Slagter and Dylan van Baarle (Cannondale), Patrick Konrad (Bora), Ilnur Zakarin (Katusha), Rui Costa (Lampre-Merida), Thomas De Gendt and Tony Gallopin (Lotto-Soudal), Sylvain Chavanel and Fabrice Jeandesbosz (Direct Energie), Julian Alaphilippe (Etixx), Nicolas Edet (Cofidis), Chris Juul-Jensen and Michael Matthews (Orica).

Thomas de Gendt  ©  Cor Vos
De Gendt rode away solo to crest the col des Aravis first. He also sprinted to first place atop the col de la Colombière to secure his second place in the King of the Mountain competition against Pantano whereas the polka dot jersey had already been mathematically secured by Rafal Majka (Tinkoff) the day before.

Pantano and Alaphilippe in action again
Warren Barguil (Giant) reached the front group right at the top of la Colombière. Daniel Teklehaimanot (Dimension Data) made it across as well in the downhill while eight riders rode away in the valley at half way into the race: I. Izagirre, Nibali, Sagan, Kreuziger, Rui Costa, Pantano, Alaphilippe and Gougeard. Sagan’s effort brought the break’s lead to a maximum of 6.24 over the peloton at km 67.

Tejay van Garderen, Fabio Aru, Diego Rosa  ©  Cor Vos

With 62km to go, Sagan finished his work while Kreuziger was virtually on the podium but Astana and AG2R-La Mondiale took over from Team Sky at the head of the peloton. De Gendt rode away again in the ascent to col de la Ramaz where he was first again. In the downhill, Pantano and Alaphilippe overtook him to form a new leading duo with 40km to go. They attacked each other within 5km to the top of Joux-Plane but Nibali came across when he heard that he would not be useful on Fabio Aru’s side as the Sardinian was struggling behind the yellow jersey group.

Vincenzo Nibali  ©  Cor Vos

Ion Izagirre soloes to victory in the descent
With 15km to go, Nibali went solo. 2km before the summit, Izagirre and Pantano rejoined Nibali in the lead. The Colombian was designated the most aggressive rider of the day. The Spaniard got a gap for himself in the downhill.

Chris Froome took no chances in the tough conditions  ©  Cor Vos
The day after Romain Bardet gave France its first stage win, Izagirre did it for Spain as well, making it the tenth nation with a stage victory this year – only five times in the past (1993, 1995 and 2006 with 11, 2002 with 12, 2013 with 13) there were more. It’s also Movistar’s first win. It validates the teams’ classification second straight victory for the squad from Navarra.

Chris Froome escorted to the finish  ©  Cor Vos
As no GC contender took the risk of losing its position, Chris Froome was quietly escorted by Team Sky to the finish while Joaquim Rodriguez moved up to the top ten for his last Tour.

Chris Froome  ©  Cor Vos

Results (brief)

1. Ion Izagirre (Esp) Movistar Team 4:06:45
2. Jarlinson Pantano (Col) IAM Cycling  0:19
3. Vincenzo Nibali (Ita) Astana Pro Team  0:42
4. Julian Alaphilippe (Fra) Etixx – Quick-Step  2:49
5. Rui Costa (Por) Lampre – Merida  1:43
6. Roman Kreuziger (Cze) Tinkoff Team  1:44
7. Wilco Kelderman (Ned) Team LottoNl-Jumbo  0:49
8. Joaquim Rodriguez (Esp) Team Katusha  3:24
9. Daniel Martin (Irl) Etixx – Quick-Step  4:12
10. Romain Bardet (Fra) AG2R La Mondiale

100. Antoine Duchesne (Can) Direct Energie 0:29:40

GC after Stage 20

1. Christopher Froome (Gbr) Team Sky 86:21:40
2. Romain Bardet (Fra) AG2R La Mondiale  4:05
3. Nairo Quintana (Col) Movistar Team  4:21
4. Adam Yates (Gbr) Orica-BikeExchange  4:42
5. Richie Porte (Aus) BMC Racing Team  5:17
6. Alejandro Valverde (Esp) Movistar Team  6:16
7. Joaquim Rodriguez (Esp) Team Katusha  6:58
8. Louis Meintjes (RSA) Lampre – Merida
9. Daniel Martin (Irl) Etixx – Quick-Step  7:04
10. Roman Kreuziger (Cze) Tinkoff Team  7:11

108. Antoine Duchesne (Can) Direct Energie 3:44:54

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