Reigning Tour de France champion Tadej Pogacar dominates the time trial of the fifth stage, finishing 19 seconds ahead of Stefan Kung … but Mathieu van der Poel keeps the yellow jersey
- Tadej Pogacar completed the 27km undulating course in a time of 32 minutes flat
- The UAE Team Emirates’ Slovenian driver now appears to be in a strong position overall
- Geraint Thomas and Primoz Roglic fought through the pain barrier to limit wasted time
Tadej Pogacar went to pole position in the Tour de France with the victory in the time trial of the fifth stage, while Geraint Thomas and Primoz Roglic fought through the pain barrier to limit wasted time.
Pogacar, who dramatically went yellow in the time trial of the 20th stage last September, was unable to repeat the feat as Mathieu van der Poel set the clock of his life in place to keep the leader’s jersey by eight seconds.
But Pogacar’s win on the day – 19 seconds ahead of European time trial champion Stefan Kung – was an important statement less than a week into his title defense.
Tadej Pogacar celebrates after winning the time trial of the fifth stage on Wednesday
Pogacar produced a major statement in the time trial less than a week into his title defense
UAE Team Emirates runner completed the 27km undulating course in a time of 32 minutes flat, with the main favorites grateful that the early rain was gone when they started.
Having been one of the few contenders to have avoided problems during the few days of bruising in Brittany, the Slovenian appears to be in a strong position.
Roglic, heavily bandaged from the third stage incident, also looked good as he set the seventh fastest time of the day, even though he is 1 minute 40 seconds behind Pogacar.
Mathieu van der Poel faced the time trial of his life to keep the leader’s jersey by eight seconds
Welshman Thomas, who dislocated his shoulder on Monday, finished the day 16th, conceding 78 seconds to Pogacar but climbing six places to 12th.
“I think I ran the best TT I could,” said Thomas. ‘I came out conservatively, maybe too conservatively, but that’s what I had.
‘I didn’t feel 100%, but I don’t want to insist on that. I tried to do what I could and it wasn’t enough, really. ‘
Geraint Thomas (pictured) and Primoz Roglic fought through the pain barrier to limit wasted time