Tour de France 2022 : Stage 17 – Pogacar takes the stage, Vingegaard takes the day

Here’s a new tourism slogan: You want drama, go to the Pyrenees. For drama it was on Stage 17 of the Tour de France with a short short short stage (130km) that had some steep steep steep climbs. With only two UAE teammates able to ride for him, Tadej Pogacar decided to deploy them as if he had a whole train of domestiques. And Mikkel Bjerg and Brandon McNulty rode like ten men, putting everyone in difficulty for what seemed to be hours until it was just McNulty, Pogacar and Jonas Vingegaard on the way to the summit finish. Pogacar and Vingegaard sprinted for the line, with Pog taking his third stage win of this Tour. Vingegaard, however, was on his wheel and gave him no gap at all – the top three GC places saw no change and none of the jerseys changed hands.

The official Tour de France site has today’s stage headline as ‘Pogacar wins the battle of the giants’. Yes, Pogacar won the stage – and that, in and of itself, is pretty amazing. But Jonas Vingegaard won the day.

Even with Bjerg and McNulty riding such a blistering pace that everyone was shelled out the back, including all of Vingegaard’s teammates by the penultimate climb of the Col d’Azet, there was no visible reaction from the maillot jaune. And to be honest, there was no reaction or attack from Pogacar on those two final climbs either.

Was he waiting for Jonas to break just from the pace? Why wasn’t he putting in sharp attacks to wear Vingegaard out so he could ride away from him? Pogacar sprinted for the line for the stage win but if you’re wanting to make up over 2min on your rival, making your move with 100m to go isn’t the way to get the job done. At the end of the day, he gained 4 seconds on Vingegaard, through bonus points. Because that was all he could do in the race on the day.

Pogacar has obviously met his match.

Pogegaard / Vingecar

You’ll have to go back to the glory days of Alberto Contador and Andy Schleck to see two GC riders so evenly matched.  And by chance, one is in yellow, the other in the white jersey …

It seems like a lot of people assume that Pogacar will suddenly blast Vingegaard to reclaim yellow, as if somehow Vinge doesn’t deserve to lead the race. Yet, the stage where Vingegaard went into yellow was because his team had a plan that risked a lot and delivered and Vinge proved he was stronger than Pog on that day.

And on every stage since the Jumbo-Visma rider first cuddled the plushie (not a euphemism) and donned the maillot jaune, he’s matched Pogacar pedal stroke for pedal stroke and Pog cannot get him off his wheel. Even Pog taking a long descent like a man possessed, Jonas follows as if it were a Sunday club ride.

GC shaken and stirred

The UAE pain train might not have gotten rid of Jonas Vingegaard, but it got rid of everybody else and everyone from 3rd on down lost significant time. The GC top 5 are in the same order as yesterday, but certainly not on the same time. Romain Bardet (DSM) moved from 9th to 6th today, swapping with Adam Yates (Ineos) who plummeted from 6th to 9th. Louis Meintjes (Wanty) and Aleksandr Vlasov (Bora) stay 7th and 8th respectively, while Enric Mas (Movistar) moves up to 10th place, with Tom Pidcock (Ineos) falls to 15th.

Geraint Thomas has pretty much locked up the third step of the podium – although I say that, anything could happen tomorrow – although his distance from Pogacar and Vingegaard is widening. But give the guy credit, he kept his cool and rode his own race today to finish 4th, with over 3min on Nairo Quintana, who still sits in 4th on GC.

Shouting Jakobsen in

QuickStep’s Fabio Jakobsen had to really dig deep to outsprint the broom wagon this afternoon. But he did outsprint it to go over the mountains again tomorrow to get to Paris for Sunday and contest the sprint on the Champs Elysees.

Green sewn up

the last word


Stage 17 results

1 Tadej Pogacar (UAE Team Emirates) 03:25:51

2 Jonas Vingegaard (Jumbo-Visma) same time

3 Brandon McNulty (UAE Team Emirates) +0:32

4 Geraint Thomas (INEOS Grenadiers) +2:07

5 Alexey Lutsenko (Astana Qazaqstan Team) +2:34

GC Top 10



1 Jonas Vingegaard (Jumbo-Visma) 67:53:54

2 Tadej Pogacar (UAE Team Emirates) +2:18

3 Geraint Thomas (INEOS Grenadiers) +4:56

4 Nairo Quintana (Team Arkea-Samsic) +7:53

5 David Gaudu (Groupama-FDJ) +7:57

6 Romain Bardet (Team DSM) +9:21

7 Louis Meintjes (Intermarche-Wanty-Goubert) 9:24

8 Aleksandr Vlasov (Bora-hansgrohe) +9:56

9 Adam Yates (Ineos Grenadiers) +14:33

10 Enric Mas (Movistar) +16:35

All the jerseys

Leader’s jersey : Jonas Vingegaard (Jumbo-Visma)

Points jersey : Wout van Aert (Jumbo-Visma)

King of the Mountains jersey : Simon Geschke (Cofidis)

Young Rider Jersey : Tadej Pogacar (UAE)

Team competition : INEOS Grenadiers

For the full stage review, go to cyclingnews

Go here for the official Tour de France website

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