Stage 8 – The Norwegian Foss finds the yellow jersey again!
22 August 2019
MERIBEL (Savoie) – The 23-kilometre “flash” stage in the form of a hill race on the brand new Col de la Loze, above Méribel, was bound to reveal the new talents of pure climbers.
In this respect, the victory of 22-year-old Australian Alexander Evans, 1.83 metres long and long, is promising.
The surprise was the inability of Belgian leader Mauri Vansevenant to limit the damage, to the point of conceding 4’7” to the winner on this finish at the top of a road recently laid out exclusively for cyclists. The Belgian gave up his yellow jersey and it was Norwegian Tobias Foss, 5th in the stage, who recovered it since he had already been at the top of the general classification in Mauriac on the evening of the third day of this undecided race.
The hitherto very fluctuating hierarchy is however beginning to clarify its contours, and behind the Norwegian, it is the American Matteo Jörgenson, almost all of the time, who becomes his direct challenger, while the Italian Giovanni Aleotti, former yellow jersey and the Frenchman Clément Champoussin remain in the race for the podium, or even better, since these four riders stand in less than a minute.
Clément Champoussin, the French team’s climber, frankly attacked on the Col de la Loze, but he could not finally prevent Alexander Evans’ return before flinching a little in the last kilometer (3rd).
On the other hand, the Colombians have been left behind, including Harold Tejada, winner the day before, and none of his compatriots are in the top 10 of the overall ranking at this stage.
The penultimate “round” this Saturday proposes a new highly rugged stage with three climbs in second category between Villaroger and the finish in altitude (2.093 meters) in Tignes where the last Tour de France could not reach last month due to a violent hailstorm and a major mudflow.