Nairo Quintana (Movistar Team) started turning things around, both physically and mentally, to what had been a bitter 2017 Tour de France for the Spanish squad.
The final Pyrenees stage did not disappoint, with four talented riders, including Quintana, leaving the peloton behind and making the GC way more open than before.
Launched by Carlos Betancur, the Colombian rider jumped away from the favourites’ group into the Agnes climb, 63km from the end, pursuing Mikel Landa and Alberto Contador.
With no cooperation inside the reduced group of favourites, the gap never went down the two minutes the quartet had before the final descent. Quintana’s advantage at the finish ended up being 1’48”, Barguil beating him for the day’s honours.
“As long as we have anything left into the tank, as long as I felt good, I’ll always keep trying doing my best. I just hope to find this legs for another day in this race”, said Quintana.
“I’m back there with the top guys, I’m not losing confidence and I hope we can do like this for a couple of days, so we can go for it. We’ve always fought with heart and soul, we’ve always been up there. You just don’t lose your touch from one day to another. If you’ve got the skills, they show up at some point. We want to keep leaving our impression in this Tour.”