Bob Jungels won the ninth stage of the Tour de France at the end of a long solo mountain raid on Sunday after COVID-19 almost prevented the Luxemburg rider from starting the race last week.
You can rewatch STAGE 9 HERE
The AG2R-Citroen rider tested positive on the eve of the start in Copenhagen last Thursday but was cleared to take part after a panel of doctors ruled that his viral load was low enough for him to ride.
“I had a test on the Thursday morning. But with the result you could see that I could start the race on Friday. It was very very close I believe,” said Jungels, the first rider from Luxemburg to win on the Tour since Andy Schleck claimed victory at the Galibier in 2011. “Luckily I made it.”
Jungels prevailed from the day’s breakaway in searing heat in the Alps after resisting a fierce chase by Thibaut Pinot, who surrendered in the final kilometres and finished fourth after 192.9km from Aigle, Switzerland.
Jonathan Castroviejo took second place 22 seconds behind Jungels with fellow Spaniard Carlos Verona ending up third a further four seconds adrift.
Tadej Pogacar retained the overall leader’s yellow jersey after spending a quiet day in the bunch, crossing the line just ahead of Jonas Vingegaard after a short sprint to the line.
Geraint Thomas, third overall, could not follow and lost three seconds, now lagging 1:17 off the pace.
“If there’s a chance to take some seconds I’ll take them,” said Pogacar.