Friday, January 21

Only Van der Poel resists the fury of a huge Pogacar on the Tour


  • Poulidor’s grandson kept the yellow jersey against the Slovenian cyclist who crushed all his rivals.

  • The 2020 winner’s opponents are between a minute and a half and two minutes, with Enric Mas performing an acceptable time trial.

There are hardly any Slovenians on the Tour, beyond two stars, one that is already beginning to reign, Tadej pogacar, and another that resists, Primoz Roglic, by the blows of combat. The foreign public has not yet appeared on the French route, freed from masks, with as many spectators as before the pandemic. And the identified Slovenian journalists travel in a van so that they can transport the bikes with which they imitate their figures in the little free time left by the race.

And there it is Pogacar, like a free being, like a 22-year-old boy who has decided to win the Tour again. He no longer runs like the old champions, parents, grandparents and great-grandparents, who did it with the sensations that the body picked up. He is of the new generation that when he gets home, after training, or at the hotel after the competition, he opens the computer and downloads the data from the cycle computer, the ones that drive him and really tell him how he is beyond the pain. or not the legs.

For this reason, he acts at will, to begin to bury all the rivals under the scourge of the stopwatch, as he did yesterday, as did those who lived more from the sensations of the body than from laptops that they did not even carry because they weighed a lot and they did not serve for things that had not yet been invented, with Miguel Indurain to the head.

At 51 kilometers per hour

Those who stand on the fences, those who endure the downpour that falls on Laval, those who spend hours and hours watching runners pass by who almost take the time trial as if it were training, hardly recognize it. At 51 an hour, no time to fixate on Pogacar, turned into a blast, into a cyclist dressed in white, whose image immediately disappears surrounded by motorcycles with photographers and television cameras. “The data I have reiterates that I am the same as last year. I did not expect, the truth, to get so much time, although surely now it will be my turn to defend than to attack, contrary to what I did in 2020. But I am prepared.”

“I did not expect to get so much time, although surely now it will be my turn to defend than attack, contrary to what I did in 2020. I am prepared,” says Pogacar

Speak happy, Pogacar, rested and recovered, with his white jersey as the best under 25 years of the test, because the yellow has kept it Van der poel, with his wild pedaling, despite admitting that he does not waste time trying to improve the aerodynamic position, training in wind tunnels and looking at the cycle computer. Almost like his grandfather Raymond Poulidor.

Van der Poel’s rage

Those who know him well assure that if he fought for the first place it was not so much because he gave up the yellow to Pogacar, with whom he maintains a magnificent relationship, but because he did not steal it Wout van Aert, fourth of the stage, and irreconcilable enemy, as if he were ‘Pou-Pou’ in front of Jacques anquetil.

Pogacar he already has, before the first real mountain appears, all the rivals who disturb him in the general standings at a minute and a half and two minutes, between Rigo Uran (the first, at 1.29) and Enric Mas (the last, at 1.58) after an acceptable time trial by the Mallorcan runner from Movistar; with Richard Carapaz, at 1.44 minutes; Roglic, at 1.48, and Geraint thomas, at 1.54 minutes. The ‘humans’ of the race are in a handkerchief and everyone knows, in case anyone had forgotten, that the common enemy is called Pogacar, victorious in his first act to win the Tour again.

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