Tour de France: Underdog Ion Izagirre crowns late solo with stage win

Tour success in the wine region
Underdog caps late solo with stage win

Many have tried, but only one outlier survives to the end: the Spaniard Ion Izaguirre wins the twelfth stage of the Tour de France. The Germans don’t matter. And even if it’s hectic in the initial phase – nothing changes in the giant duel.

Ion Izagirre tugged at his earlobe with a grin and then threw his arms up in delight. The Spanish breakaway has treated himself to a second stage win in the Tour de France after a seven-year wait. The 34-year-old veteran triumphed on the twelfth stage after a 30 km solo and gave his French team Cofidis their second success at this year’s loop before the national holiday.

Izagirre broke away from a breakaway group on the last climb, nobody could follow the lightweight. At the finish he was 58 seconds ahead of Mathieu Burgaudeau and Matteo Jorgenson. Simon Geschke’s teammate had previously won a stage in the Tour of France in 2016. Germans played no role over the demanding 169 km from Roanne in the well-known wine region to Belleville-en-Beaujolais.

Defending champion Jonas Vingegaard (Jumbo-Visma) and challenger Tadej Pogacar from the UAE Emirates team crossed the finish line again at the same time. The Dane is still 17 seconds ahead of his rival from Slovenia in the overall standings. The exciting duel for the yellow jersey is likely to gain momentum again on the upcoming stage up to the Grand Colombier. After twelve of the total of 21 sections, the top German team Bora-hansgrohe can still hope for a place on the podium in the overall standings. Captain Jai Hindley is still third.

The view goes to the Grand Colombier

Immediately after the sharp start numerous riders tried to escape to the front – but without success, the peloton set a high speed. A strong breakaway formed only 88 kilometers before the finish. Previously, David de la Cruz (Astana Qazaqstan) had to retire after a bad fall, the Spaniard was taken to the hospital.

His compatriot Izagirre surprised his competitors on the climb of the Col de la Croix Rosier. The Spaniard steadily increased his lead, and at the end of a strenuous stage the pursuers were unable to counter it.

On the 13th stage, the duel for yellow is expected to flare up again. After Pogacar and Vingegaard recently saved their strength, the epic Grand Colombier will be climbed for the second time on the French national day. Incidentally, Pogacar had triumphed three years ago in the only previous arrival on the most famous peak of the Jura.

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