Thrilling stage to end the climbing of the 2022 Tour
The 18th stage of the Grande Boucle offered the last climbs of this Tour de France: 143.2km from Lourdes to Hautacam.
The start saw an explosion of attacks though no group immediately found any leeway by the peloton.
On the second climb, the Col de Spandelles, the work of Brandon McNulty begins, placed at the head of the group to dictate the pace.
With less than 40km from the finish, Pogačar lunched the first attack, with only Vingegaard (Jumbo-Visma) able to keep up with him.
On a fast and dirty descent, there was a moment of panic when Pogačar crashed on a bend, though would later remount and join the leaders again.
On the final 14km a group formed by Pogačar, Thomas (INEOS Grenadiers) and the duo of Vingegaard-Kuss (Jumbo-Visma).
With 4km to the line Pogačar lost touch of the leaders, before fighting back to finish in second position behind the Yellow Jersey.
Pogačar: “I gave it all today, I wasn’t thinking about the stage win, I was thinking about the yellow jersey. I gave it my all on the second to last climb, crashed on the downhill, gave it my all on the last climb but second place is the best for me. I think I did all I could and I think I can be proud of the result.”
Tomorrow is a sprinters stage with 188.3 km from Castelnau-Magnoac to Cahors.
Results 18th stage:
1.Jonas Vingegaard (Jumbo-Visma) 3h39’50”
2.Tadej Pogačar (UAE Team Emirates) + 1’04”
3.Wout Van Aert (Jumbo-Visma) + 2’10”
General classification after the 18th stage:
1.Jonas Vingegaard (Jumbo-Visma) 71h53’34”
2.Tadej Pogačar (UAE Team Emirates) + 3’26”
3.Geraint Thomas (INEOS Grenadiers) + 8’00”