Tour de France stg18 Michal Kwiatkowski wins alongside teammate
Michal Kwiatkowski and Richard Carapaz completed a resounding 1-2 finish for the INEOS Grenadiers on stage 18 at the Tour de France as Primoz Roglic has an eye on the title.
With three stages to go he holds a 57 sec lead.
The Ineos Grenadiers pair rode into the finish together in La Roche-sur-Foron after distancing their rivals on a big day in the mountains. Kwiatkowski crossed the line arm in arm with Carapaz, who battled hard over the five categorised climbs to move into the lead of the polka dot jersey.
Throwing everything at the breakaway, the team placed no fewer than four riders in the opening move, with Jonathan Castroviejo and Dylan van Baarle ensuring numbers at the head of the race.
As the climbs wore on, Carapaz and Kwiatkowski were able to work together, eventually dropping Pello Bilbao (Bahrain-McLaren) on the Col des Gileres. They held on to finish 1:51 ahead of the chasing GC group, featuring race leader Primoz Roglic (Jumbo-Visma).
For Kwiatkowski the win marked his first Grand Tour stage victory, while Carapaz became the first Ecuadorian rider to pull on the polka dot jersey - leading the classification by a slender two points with three stages to go.
"That was some day. I can’t describe how grateful I am to the whole team and also to Richard. That was an incredible day for us and I will never forget that. I’ve had some nice moments in cycling but that was something else – a new experience – I’ve had goosebumps for the last I don’t know how many kilometres. The gap was so big that we were going to make it. Both of us we really enjoyed the last kilometres. It’s incredible.
Stage 18 result
1 - Michal Kwiatkowski (Pol/Ineos Grenadiers) 4hrs 47mins 33secs
2 - Richard Carapaz (Ecu/Ineos Grenadiers) Same time
3 - Wout van Aert (Bel/Jumbo-Visma) +1min 51secs
4 - Primoz Roglic (Slo/Jumbo-Visma) +1min 53secs
5 - Tadej Pogacar (Slo/UAE Team Emirates) Same time
6 - Richie Porte (Aus/Trek-Segafredo) +1min 54secs
7 - Enric Mas (Spa/Movistar) Same time
8 - Mikel Landa (Spa/Bahrain McLaren)
9 - Damiano Caruso (Ita/Bahrain McLaren)
10 - Tom Dumoulin (Ned/Jumbo-Visma)
General classification after stage 18
1 - Primoz Roglic (Slo/Jumbo-Visma) 79hrs 45mins 30secs
2 - Tadej Pogacar (Slo/UAE Team Emirates) +57secs
3 - Miguel Angel Lopez (Col/Astana) +1mins 27secs
4 - Richie Porte (Aus/Trek-Segafredo) +3mins 06secs
5 - Mikel Landa (Spa/Bahrain McLaren) +3mins 28secs
6 - Enric Mas (Spa/Movistar) +4mins 19secs
7 - Adam Yates (GB/Mitchelton-Scott) +5mins 55secs
8 - Rigoberto Uran (Col/EF Pro Cycling) +6mins 05secs
9 - Tom Dumoulin (Ned/Jumbo-Visma) +7mins 24secs
10 - Alejandro Valverde (Spa/Movistar) +12mins 12secs