Laporte and Benoot on the attack in Tour's nineteenth stage
Breakaways dominated the 19th stage of the Tour de France. In a stage that resembled a spring classic, Christophe Laporte and Tiesj Benoot were part of a group of 36 escapees. Laporte eventually finished sixth behind winner Matej Mohoric.
After a strong start, Benoot was part of a leading group of nine riders. A larger group soon joined them, bringing the total to 36 riders. They would fight for the stage win. In the end, a group of three made it to the line first. A few seconds behind, Laporte sprinted into the top ten for the second consecutive day. Jonas Vingegaard crossed the line in the yellow jersey more than 13 minutes after the day's winner.
"It was a fast stage”, said Vingegaard, referring to the average speed of almost fifty kilometres per hour. "We got through the day safely again. We ensured no one high up in the general classification got away. We managed that. For us, Tiesj and Christophe were in the lead group, so the situation was good. Winning the stage would have been nice, but it didn’t happen. This stage was like a spring classic. The start was pretty fast because everyone wanted to be in the breakaway. In the end, we are happy with the way it went today.”
"Every day, we are getting closer to Paris"
The Dane saw the end of the Tour approaching. "Every day, we are getting closer to Paris. We are also getting closer and closer to our ultimate goal. Before we head to Paris on Sunday, we have a challenging mountain stage tomorrow. My priority is to consolidate my lead in the general classification. Being able to fight for the stage win would be a nice bonus. I also expect something from the competition. In any case, we will have to stay focused. I am looking forward to tomorrow's beautiful stage.”