Egan Bernal looks good ahead of Tour de France as he clings to Route d’Occitanie victory


Egan Bernal (Team Ineos) held on to win the four-day Route d’Occitanie in the French Pyrenees on Tuesday, highlighting his good form four weeks before the Tour de France.The Colombian, who is aiming for a second consecutive Tour title next month, finished fourth on the final day, two seconds behind fourth stage winner Benoit Cosnefroy (AG2R La Mondiale).

After a long absence due to the coronavirus pandemic, the race was stung by fans looking for clues about form. Chris Froome, teammate of Bernal Ineos – who is also aiming for Tour glory next month – finished in 37th place overall, almost 10 minutes behind the winner. Froome, however, was on domestic duty during the race and played his part well, turning the screw on Beyrède’s decisive climb on day three to prepare teammate Bernal and Ineos Pavel Sivakov for a double on the stage. The four-time Tour champion is still coming back from an accident that threatened his career at the Criterium du Dauphine last year.

“I’m going to take it a week at a time for now, keep improving my level,” he told reporters after the third stage. “Obviously things can change before we get to the Tour. There is still a month to go and a lot can happen. ”

Frenchman Thibaut Pinot (Groupama-FDJ) was also in good shape before the Tour, taking third place on Tuesday’s last stage to finish fourth overall at 37 seconds.


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