The last few days of the Tour have been some of the most exciting stages of any Grand Tour in recent memory. Ed Hood has been stuck to his wide-screen TV to give us his thoughts on the climax to the 2020 French Grand Tour.
Tour de France
The last stage of the 2020 Tour de France in Paris went to the Irishman in the green jersey, Sam Bennett (Deceuninck - Quick-Step). But the day was always going to be Slovenian as Tadej Pogačar (UAE Team Emirates) confirmed his overall win.
Author Peter Cossins describes in his history of that first 1903 Tour de France, the inelegantly titled “Butcher, Blacksmith, Acrobat, Sweep,” the original Tour de France, something totally new and untried and flawed in many ways, “should be considered as one of the greatest events in sporting history.”
An unbelievable climax to the 2020 Tour de France as 'Young Gun' Tadej Pogačar (UAE Team Emirates) stormed the climb of La Planche-des-Belles-Filles. The Slovenian not only took the stage win, he demolished his countryman, Primoz Roglič (Jumbo-Visma), to slip into the yellow jersey with just the ride to Paris on Sunday.
For some riders, stage 19 was a pre-time trial rest day, but the battle for the green jersey caused another day of excitement. Sunweb's Søren Kragh Andersen went solo in the finalé for his second Tour stage win after his stage 14 victory. The GC men rode home at their leisure to stay in the same positions.
Stage 18 was billed as the hardest day of the 2020 Tour de France and it was the INEOS-Grenadiers team who gave the mountains a good shake. Carapaz and Kwiatkowski made the break and then team time trialed to the finish. The top ten had some changes, but Roglič, Pogačar and López kept their podium places.
Another exciting Tour stage with a nail-biting climax on the Col de la Loze. Miguel Ángel López put in the final attack on the final leg breaking ramps, the yellow jersey, Primoz Roglič tried to go with him and took lengths from second placed Tadej Pogačar. That's how they finished and Lopez jumped to third overall.
The first day of the final week was not one for the GC men as the break of the day went all the way to the finish as Lennard Kämna soloed to the line a minute and a half ahead of 2019 Giro d'Italia winner, Richard Carapaz. The GC men finished together, although Nairo Quintana lost a little time. Egan Bernal lost a lot.