Respite for the peloton on stage 13 of the Tour de France

Fri 20 Jul 2018

After three brutal mountain stages in the Alps the peloton was given some respite on stage 13 of the Tour de France, with the flat stage resulting in a bunch sprint.

It was a day of recovery for Mitchelton-SCOTT as they make the transition to individual stage focuses.

Quartet down the road:
A downhill start made for a fast opening hour of racing as two groups of two riders joined to form a breakaway of four. 

With the absence of a lot of the top sprinters, the opportunity was open for a number of teams and Groupama-FDJ and UAE Team Emirates shouldered a lot of the work with Bora-Hansgrohe.

Michael Schär (BMC Racing Team) was the last remaining escapee before he was swept up in the lead up to the sprint won by Peter Sagan (Bora Hansgrohe)

Recovery day:
After the efforts of the last days and the intent of a sprint from the peloton early, Mitchelton-SCOTT used the day to relax and recover as much as possible.

All eight riders finished safely in the bunch with Australian Michael Hepburn the top finisher in 20th position.

Michael Hepburn:
“After the last Alpine stages it was nice to switch off a little today and enjoy an easier stage. 

“We didn’t have to do much today until the final hour of racing where the main goal was just to stay out of trouble.

“In the final I thought about trying a move with about two or three kilometres to go but in the end it was downhill there and too fast for any attacks so I just ended up on the back of the lead out trains.

“There are a couple of tricky stages before the rest day so everyone welcomed a nicer day on the legs. 

Tour de France – Stage 13:
1. Peter Sagan (Bora Hansgrohe) 3:45:55
2. Alexander Kristoff (UAE Team Emirates) ST
3. Arnaud Demare (Groupama-FDJ) ST
20. Michael Hepburn (Mitchelton-SCOTT) ST

Tour de France – General Classification after Stage 13:
1. Geraint Thomas (Team Sky) 53:10:38
2. Chris Froome (Team Sky) +1:39
3. Tom Dumoulin (Team Sunweb) +1:50
14. Mikel Nieve (Mitchelton-SCOTT) +15:28 

Photo courtesy of Getty Images.