Tour de France - Thomas De Gendt: I believed in the victory the whole day
Jul 13 2019 11:56 pm CET

Tour de France - Thomas De Gendt: I believed in the victory the whole day
Tour de France - Thomas De Gendt: I believed in the victory the whole day
Photo of Thomas De Gendt by Lotto Soudal

Thomas De Gendt crossed solo the finish line of the eighth stage of the Tour de France. The rider of Lotto-Soudal was the lone survivor of the breakaway and was strong enough to celebrate by himself.

This is the second time that the Belgian rider takes a victory of the French grand tour, the first was in 2016 in the Mount Ventoux, and he did it by launching an attack in the last climb and riding away by himself. He crossed the finish line six seconds ahead of Thibaut Pinot and Julian Alaphilippe.

"With around 70 kilometres to go, we started to ride a bit faster and King and Terpstra dropped," he explained the way the stage developed. "So there was just De Marchi and I and we just kept riding full gas until the last climb. The bunch was getting closer and I had to go solo and try to stay ahead of them.

"I had a really good day, I had a really good feeling all day so I believed in the victory the whole day but we only got five minutes and it went down very quickly to three and a half, so we weren't riding easy but we didn't push that hard on the climb of Affoux and just after that we went full because we heard that the peloton was pulling hard. That was a moment to try to get a bigger gap again and then I started to believe in that again. We almost crashed in a few corners because we were taking some risks but at around seventy kilometres to go I started to believe in a possible victory but still, it hurt so much."

The Belgian arrived to the race with the objective of taking a stage victory and he did just that. "It is a mission accomplished for me and also for the team because we came here to win a stage. We were really close yesterday with Caleb (Ewan) and today was a day for me, where I could take my chance. I had already a good feeling the entire tour and I had really amazing legs today."



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