The Slovene scored two goals winning the sixth stage and grabbing the yellow jersey after a brilliant final punch to Longwy.
We were expecting the spectacular Super-Planche-des-Belles-Filles, on Friday, or the first foothills of the Alps, this weekend, to witness the first launches of flags by a Tadej Pogacar poking into the drill for three days in the north of France. . In a hurry, the Slovenian has finally refused to wait for the first great difficulties of the 2022 edition to strike a blow and seize the yellow jersey, after a show of dizzying strength in Longwy, the end point of a marathon stage of 219.9 km.
Confusingly easy, surpassed in the short but selective ascent of the Religious before the climb sprint, the double winner of the Grande Boucle (2020 and 2021) put a point of honor to get his seventh victory in the Tour ahead of Michael Matthews (BikeExchange) and a very long David Gaudu (Groupama-FDJ), who this Thursday evening closes the top 10 of the overall standings behind Romain Bardet (DSM).
In the fight for victory in Meurthe-et-Moselle, the two arrows of the Jumbo-Visma team, Primoz Roglic, reassuring after the shoulder dislocation the day before, and Jonas Vingegaard, or even the ‘ambitious Aleksandr Vlasov (Bora-Hansgrohe) and Enric Mas (Movistar) have been unable to do anything to prevent the Slovene from taking power, almost surprised to turn yellow so soon after this punch number. “The goal was not to grab the yellow jersey, but I’m very happy with the win.” released the leader of the UAE Team Emirates, who swallowed the stage at a dizzying speed of more than 49 km / h on average.
Good strategist, Tadej Pogacar waited for the end of the course, well supported by two lieutenants of his formation, to be left 11 km from the end Wout van Aert (Jumbo-Visma), the only survivor of a leak launched after of 72 km. in the company of Jakob Fuglsang (Israel-Premier Tech) and Quinn Simmons (Trek-Segafredo). Blaster of a squad that was barely recovering from the cobblestones of the previous day, the brave Belgian signed a magnificent (but tactically questionable) last position, finishing the day exhausted more than seven minutes late. “The stage was very hard, the first two hours were crazy, the strongest (van Aert) he was on the run and many pilots wanted to be in front. At one point I wondered if we would get him back, but the peloton was the strongest. Then, because I felt good, the team worked hard to put me in the best position. “ added Pogacar.
Obviously surprised by this new demonstration, the competition would be wrong to give up its arms already, although the 23-year-old prodigy, who seems stronger than ever, would never have taken the yellow jersey so soon in the Tour de France (in the 8e stage in 2021). Proof of his indisputable superiority. Starting on Friday, another race will begin with the ascent of the Super-Planche-des-Belles-Filles and its 20% drop in the last kilometer, a simple aperitif for climbers before a formidable crossing of the Alps which ends with the ascent of Alpe. of Huez in the manner of fireworks.
Classification of the 6e stage: Binche-Longwy (219.9 km): 1. Pogacar (Slo / UAE) in 4 h 27’13; 2. Matthews (Auys / BIK) same time; 3. Gaudu (Fra / GFJ); 4. Pidcock (GB / INE); 5. Quintana (Col / ARK) … 103. Van Aert (Bel / JUM) at 7’28 …
General classification : 1. Pogacar (Slo / United Arab Emirates) 20:44:44; 2. Impotent (EU / EF1) at 4 ”; 3. Vingegaard (Dan / JUM) 31 ”; 4. Yates (GB / INE) 39 ”; 5. Pidcock (GB / INE) 40 ”.
7e stage, this Friday : Tomblaine-La Super-Planche-des-Belles-Filles (176.3 km).