UAE Team Emirates’ Tadej Pogacar powered to victory in stage five of this year’s Tour de France with an outstanding performance in the Individual Time Trial, which also saw him jump four spots in the General Classification, where he currently sits in second just eight seconds behind the race leader Mathieu Van De Poel.
Pogacar rode the 27.2km course from Change to Laval Espace Mayenne in 32 minutes, with an average pace of 51km/h, beating all of his GC rivals as well as the reigning European Time Trial Champion Stefan Kung (Groupama FDJ) who was knocked into second spot 19 seconds off the Slovenian sensation.
The result puts Tadej Pogacar and UAE Team Emirates in a strong position as the peloton inches closer to its first block of mountain stages, where the GC will start to be contested.
Pogacar said: “Today was a really good day for me. I didn’t make any mistakes and the weather conditions really suited me too. I had checked out the course and new about the climb at the end, so I focussed on pacing myself with the perfect rhythm right until the finish. My goal was to avoid losing time, but I actually managed to gain time on my GC rivals which is great. I’d love to have the yellow jersey, but for now Mathieu [Van der Poel] looks nice in it, so it’s fine! I’m just really happy and excited about the rest of the Tour.”
Tomorrow the team will focus on keeping Pogacar safe as they tackle the 160.4km route from Tours to Chateauroux, a pan flat course which is likely to end with another bunch sprint finish.
Stage 5 Results
1. Tadej Pogacar (UAE Tam Emirates) 32:00
2. Stefan Kung (Groupama FDJ) +19”
3. Jonas Vingegaard (Team Jumbo Visma) +27’’
1. Mathieu Van der Poel (Alpecin Fenix) 16:15:41”
2. Tadej Pogacar (UAE Team Emirates) +8”
3. Wout Van Aert (Team Jumbo Visma) +30”