BMC Racing win Tour de France TTT

Greg Van Avermaet moves into yellow jersey

BMC Racing Team claimed an emphatic victory in the stage 3 team time trial at the Tour de France, toppling Team Sky and Quick-Step Floors to propel Greg Van Avermaet into the maillot jaune. His teammate Tejay van Garderen finished on the same time to take second place overall, with Sky's Geraint Thomas third in the general classifications at three seconds.

Van Avermaet was thrilled to don the yellow jersey, which he last wore in 2016 when he led the race for three stages.

"It's a big goal to get yellow in the first week," Van Avermaet said. "I wore it once before and was an incredible feeling to wear it. I've got it for a second time and I'm going to enjoy it fully tomorrow. For a rider, it's something special. I want to thank my teammates because without them it wouldn't have happened.

"A team time trial is always something special," Van Avermaet continued. "The whole team does the effort for one goal in winning the stage and I think that our team are masters in it. I'm really happy to be a part of it."

BMC's performance helped to push leader Richie Porte into a better position after the Australian lost time on the opening stage, but more importantly, they earned a big morale boost through winning the stage.

"Obviously it was a tough one today but the big strong guys did a great job and it was a perfect team time trial," Porte said. "It puts us right back in the game. It would have been nice not to have thrown 51 seconds away on the first day. To win with these guys is a great feeling."

With BMC Racing potentially folding if they can't find a sponsor, the victory was another important milestone in the search for funding.

"It's not a bad thing for a team that's looking for a sponsor to have the yellow jersey," Porte said. "We're taking some time back on some of the other GC guys. It's still a long way to go, six more hectic days and the mountains."

Sky set the fast early time to nudge Mitchelton-Scott off the hot seat, but BMC, another early starter, flew through the line four seconds quicker.

Geraint Thomas, who was Sky's best-placed man in sixth overnight just 15 seconds off race leader Peter Sagan (Bora-Hansgrohe) and, more importantly, one second ahead of Van Avermaet, had to be content with moving into third place on the standings at three seconds.

"To be honest, I didn't even think about [taking the yellow jersey]," Thomas said. "It was all about trying to win the stage, and that would have been a nice bonus on top of it. We really wanted to try and get that stage today because we've been close in the past in Tour TTTs. Close, but not quite quick enough.

Once BMC and Sky were through, the fight for the yellow jersey had a lull as the other teams of the overall contenders focused mainly on limiting their losses to the fastest teams. Sunweb came the closest to the top time, just 12 seconds behind BMC to keep Tom Dumoulin in contention at 12 seconds from Van Avermaet.

Quick-Step Floors, the second to last team on course, muscled in to take the third spot, nudging Mitchelton-Scott and Sunweb down a rung, but it was a disappointment for the Belgian team as Fernando Gaviria was dropped early on and Philippe Gilbert did not gain enough to move into the race lead, falling five seconds short. Peter Sagan lost contact with the Bora-Hansgrohe squad on the climb before the second time check and fell well out of contention for regaining the maillot jaune.

Of the major overall contenders, Dumoulin continued in a strong position just 11 seconds down in seventh, while Rigoberto Uran (EF Education First-Drapac) climbed to 10th overall at 35 seconds. Richie Porte (BMC) is up to 14th at 51 seconds, while defending champion Chris Froome (Team Sky) moved up to 18th at 55 seconds.

Froome said it was reassuring to gain back some of the time he lost to his crash on the opening stage. "It would have been nice not to lose it in the first place," he said. "I think there will be a lot more time lost throughout the GC group before we hit the mountains. One day you gain, one day you lose, that's the nature of the game."

How it unfolded

Bright sunshine and a light breeze greeted the teams as they lined up for the 35.5km team time trial in Cholet. Mitchelton-Scott were the first squad to take to the course, and although they were the obvious fastest first time, they also topped Team Sky and BMC at the early check on the course. The latter two squads were locked at one second behind the Australian team, but Sky began to pull away in the second half of the course.

More boos from the spectators dogged Team Sky as they drove an aggressive pace along the course, one that distanced first Luke Rowe and then Wout Poels. The remaining six stayed together to the finish, with Michal Kwiatkowski and Froome leading to the line to top Mitchelton-Scott by just under five seconds.

Movistar were clearly not going well, giving up 27 seconds by the second time check. They were down to five men - only Andrey Amador and Marc Soler were left with the three leaders as they desperately tried to limit their losses. The Spanish team lost 49 seconds to Sky by the line, another blow to their GC hopes already hit by the stage 1 disaster suffered by Nairo Quintana.

While Team Sky's performance was impressive, BMC were even better, coming over the climb for the second time check with six seconds over Sky. Van Avermaet powered his team toward a potential maillot jaune, going four seconds quicker than Sky at the finish.

Next in line was EF-Drapac, with the wounded Lawson Craddock continuing to show immense grit to stick with his squad - not merely a passenger but continuing to work to keep them in contention. They came across the second check 24 seconds behind BMC Racing, and with Craddock holding on to the finish, ceded 35 seconds to BMC.

"He was struggling a lot with the corners when we did the recon because he couldn't get out of the saddle," his teammate Taylor Phinney said. "To do a TTT at that speed and be able to hang on and push through, he's shown us all a lot of character."

AG2R La Mondiale struggled to keep pace with the leading teams, putting Romain Bardet at a distinct disadvantage by losing a minute to BMC, the situation much worse for UAE Team Emirates, who ceded 1:38 - not much to help for Dan Martin's GC hopes.

No teams came close to BMC and Sky until Team Sunweb powered across the line just 12 seconds slower than BMC in fourth. Bahrain-Merida was down to four riders early on, and it hurt their chances with the team of Vincenzo Nibali losing 1:06 to BMC.

The fight for the maillot jaune intensified as Bora-Hansgrohe started their ride, with Quick-Step Floors being pushed to the breaking point to put Philippe Gilbert into yellow jersey contention. After second-placed Fernando Gaviria lost contact, the team were forced to sit up and let Tim Declercq catch back on.

The Belgian squad got their act back together, with Terpstra powering four other riders including Gilbert just six seconds behind BMC at the second check. They continued on the same trajectory, losing only one more second by the line, but it wasn't enough for the team to take the maillot jaune.

Bora-Hansgrohe had similar problems, with Sagan losing contact on the climb before the second time check to slip out of the yellow jersey. The team held on for seventh best, 50 seconds slower than BMC.

Full Results

#Rider Name (Country) TeamResult
1BMC Racing Team0:38:46 
2Team Sky0:00:04 
3Quick-Step Floors0:00:07 
5Team Sunweb0:00:11 
6EF Education First-Drapac p/b Cannondale0:00:35 
8Astana Pro Team0:00:51 
10Movistar Team0:00:53 
12AG2R La Mondiale0:01:15 
15UAE Team Emirates0:01:38 
18Direct Energie0:01:51 
19Lotto Soudal0:01:52 
20Dimension Data  
21Wanty-Groupe Gobert0:02:24 
22Cofidis, Solutions Credits0:03:23 
General classification after stage 3
#Rider Name (Country) TeamResult
1Greg Van Avermaet (Bel) BMC Racing Team9:08:55 
2Tejay van Garderen (USA) BMC Racing Team  
3Geraint Thomas (GBr) Team Sky0:00:03 
4Philippe Gilbert (Bel) Quick-Step Floors0:00:05 
5Bob Jungels (Lux) Quick-Step Floors0:00:07 
6Julian Alaphilippe (Fra) Quick-Step Floors  
7Tom Dumoulin (Ned) Team Sunweb0:00:11 
8Søren Kragh Andersen (Den) Team Sunweb  
9Michael Matthews (Aus) Team Sunweb  
10Rigoberto Uran (Col) EF Education First-Drapac p/b Cannondale0:00:35 
11Rafal Majka (Pol) Bora-Hansgrohe0:00:50 
12Daniel Oss (Ita) Bora-Hansgrohe  
13Jakob Fuglsang (Den) Astana Pro Team0:00:51 
14Richie Porte (Aus) BMC Racing Team  
15Ilnur Zakarin (Rus) Katusha-Alpecin0:00:52 
16Alejandro Valverde (Spa) Movistar Team0:00:53 
17Mikel Landa (Spa) Movistar Team  
18Chris Froome (GBr) Team Sky0:00:55 
19Taylor Phinney (USA) EF Education First-Drapac p/b Cannondale0:00:56 
20Adam Yates (GBr) Mitchelton-Scott0:01:00 
21Daryl Impey (RSA) Mitchelton-Scott  
22Vincenzo Nibali (Ita) Bahrain-Merida0:01:06 
23Gorka Izagirre (Spa) Bahrain-Merida  
24Michael Valgren (Den) Astana Pro Team  
25Romain Bardet (Fra) AG2R La Mondiale0:01:15 
26Steven Kruijswijk (Ned) LottoNL-Jumbo  
27Primoz Roglic (Slo) LottoNL-Jumbo  
28John Degenkolb (Ger) Trek-Segafredo0:01:16 
29Jasper Stuyven (Bel) Trek-Segafredo  
30Bauke Mollema (Ned) Trek-Segafredo  
31Egan Bernal (Col) Team Sky0:01:19 
32Pierre Rolland (Fra) EF Education First-Drapac p/b Cannondale0:01:26 
33Mikel Nieve (Spa) Mitchelton-Scott  
34Oliver Naesen (Bel) AG2R La Mondiale0:01:31 
35Maciej Bodnar (Pol) Bora-Hansgrohe0:01:32 
36Magnus Cort (Den) Astana Pro Team0:01:33 
37Simon Geschke (Ger) Team Sunweb  
38Alexander Kristoff (Nor) UAE Team Emirates0:01:38 
39Daniel Martin (Irl) UAE Team Emirates  
40Chad Haga (USA) Team Sunweb0:01:41 
41Rudy Molard (Fra) Groupama-FDJ0:01:42 
42Tanel Kangert (Est) Astana Pro Team  
43Ramon Sinkeldam (Ned) Groupama-FDJ  
44Warren Barguil (Fra) Fortuneo-Samsic0:01:46 
45Laurent Pichon (Fra) Fortuneo-Samsic  
46Yves Lampaert (Bel) Quick-Step Floors  
47Sylvain Chavanel (Fra) Direct Energie0:01:48 
48Nikias Arndt (Ger) Team Sunweb0:01:49 
49Lilian Calmejane (Fra) Direct Energie0:01:51 
50Thomas Boudat (Fra) Direct Energie  
51Mark Cavendish (GBr) Dimension Data0:01:52 
52Edvald Boasson Hagen (Nor) Dimension Data  
53Tiesj Benoot (Bel) Lotto Soudal  
54Reinardt Janse Van Rensburg (RSA) Dimension Data  
55Domenico Pozzovivo (Ita) Bahrain-Merida0:01:57 
56Ion Izagirre (Spa) Bahrain-Merida  
57Romain Hardy (Fra) Fortuneo-Samsic0:02:03 
58Antwan Tolhoek (Ned) LottoNL-Jumbo0:02:06 
59Nairo Quintana (Col) Movistar Team0:02:08 
60Koen de Kort (Ned) Trek-Segafredo0:02:14 
61Mathias Frank (Swi) AG2R La Mondiale0:02:19 
62Marco Marcato (Ita) UAE Team Emirates0:02:20 
63Gregor Mühlberger (Aut) Bora-Hansgrohe  
64Timothy Dupont (Bel) Wanty-Groupe Gobert0:02:24 
65Dion Smith (NZl) Wanty-Groupe Gobert  
66Michal Kwiatkowski (Pol) Team Sky0:02:28 
67Kristijan Durasek (Cro) UAE Team Emirates0:02:29 
68Darwin Atapuma (Col) UAE Team Emirates  
69Edward Theuns (Bel) Team Sunweb0:02:30 
70Arthur Vichot (Fra) Groupama-FDJ0:02:33 
71Paul Martens (Ger) LottoNL-Jumbo  
72Julien Vermote (Bel) Dimension Data0:02:34 
73Amund Grøndahl Jansen (Nor) LottoNL-Jumbo0:02:35 
74Maxime Bouet (Fra) Fortuneo-Samsic0:02:37 
75Stefan Küng (Swi) BMC Racing Team0:02:50 
76Sep Vanmarcke (Bel) EF Education First-Drapac p/b Cannondale0:02:54 
77Daniel Martinez (Col) EF Education First-Drapac p/b Cannondale  
78Mark Renshaw (Aus) Dimension Data0:02:56 
79Serge Pauwels (Bel) Dimension Data  
80Peter Sagan (Svk) Bora-Hansgrohe0:03:00 
81Damiano Caruso (Ita) BMC Racing Team0:03:02 
82Romain Sicard (Fra) Direct Energie0:03:03 
83Axel Domont (Fra) AG2R La Mondiale0:03:07 
84Jack Bauer (NZl) Mitchelton-Scott0:03:11 
85Elie Gesbert (Fra) Fortuneo-Samsic0:03:13 
86Marco Minnaard (Ned) Wanty-Groupe Gobert0:03:15 
87Guillaume Martin (Fra) Wanty-Groupe Gobert  
88Julien Simon (Fra) Cofidis, Solutions Credits0:03:23 
89Pierre Latour (Fra) AG2R La Mondiale0:03:26 
90Alexis Vuillermoz (Fra) AG2R La Mondiale0:03:31 
91Tom Scully (NZl) EF Education First-Drapac p/b Cannondale0:03:34 
92Andrea Pasqualon (Ita) Wanty-Groupe Gobert0:03:36 
93Thomas Degand (Bel) Wanty-Groupe Gobert  
94Amael Moinard (Fra) Fortuneo-Samsic0:03:49 
95Sonny Colbrelli (Ita) Bahrain-Merida0:03:57 
96Marcus Burghardt (Ger) Bora-Hansgrohe0:03:58 
97Omar Fraile (Spa) Astana Pro Team  
98Gianni Moscon (Ita) Team Sky0:04:07 
99Dylan Groenewegen (Ned) LottoNL-Jumbo0:04:10 
100Kristijan Koren (Slo) Bahrain-Merida0:04:12 
101Rick Zabel (Ger) Katusha-Alpecin0:04:13 
102Damien Gaudin (Fra) Direct Energie0:04:15 
103Tom-Jelte Slagter (Ned) Dimension Data0:04:20 
104Jens Keukeleire (Bel) Lotto Soudal0:04:27 
105Robert Kiserlovski (Cro) Katusha-Alpecin0:04:30 
106Andrey Amador (CRc) Movistar Team0:04:33 
107Heinrich Haussler (Aus) Bahrain-Merida0:04:34 
108Timo Roosen (Ned) LottoNL-Jumbo0:04:40 
109Simon Gerrans (Aus) BMC Racing Team0:04:41 
110Fernando Gaviria (Col) Quick-Step Floors0:04:44 
111Florian Vachon (Fra) Fortuneo-Samsic0:04:49 
112Guillaume Van Keirsbulck (Bel) Wanty-Groupe Gobert0:04:54 
113Maximiliano Richeze (Arg) Quick-Step Floors  
114Nils Politt (Ger) Katusha-Alpecin  
115Jasper De Buyst (Bel) Lotto Soudal  
116Julien Bernard (Fra) Trek-Segafredo0:04:59 
117André Greipel (Ger) Lotto Soudal0:05:02 
118Marcel Sieberg (Ger) Lotto Soudal  
119Tomasz Marczynski (Pol) Lotto Soudal0:05:04 
120Pavel Kochetkov (Rus) Katusha-Alpecin0:05:06 
121Patrick Bevin (NZl) BMC Racing Team0:05:07 
122Jerome Cousin (Fra) Direct Energie0:05:17 
123Imanol Erviti (Spa) Movistar Team0:05:28 
124Tony Gallopin (Fra) AG2R La Mondiale0:05:29 
125Dmitriy Gruzdev (Kaz) Astana Pro Team0:05:34 
126Rein Taaramäe (Est) Direct Energie0:05:38 
127Marc Soler (Spa) Movistar Team0:05:42 
128Toms Skujins (Lat) Trek-Segafredo0:05:53 
129José Joaquin Rojas (Spa) Movistar Team0:05:59 
130Jacopo Guarnieri (Ita) Groupama-FDJ0:06:04 
131Pawel Poljanski (Pol) Bora-Hansgrohe  
132Niki Terpstra (Ned) Quick-Step Floors0:06:09 
133Simon Clarke (Aus) EF Education First-Drapac p/b Cannondale0:06:12 
134Michael Gogl (Aut) Trek-Segafredo  
135Nicolas Edet (Fra) Cofidis, Solutions Credits0:06:39 
136David Gaudu (Fra) Groupama-FDJ0:06:47 
137Tony Martin (Ger) Katusha-Alpecin0:06:54 
138Michael Schär (Swi) BMC Racing Team0:06:57 
139Laurens ten Dam (Ned) Team Sunweb0:07:15 
140Thomas De Gendt (Bel) Lotto Soudal0:07:25 
141Lukas Pöstlberger (Aut) Bora-Hansgrohe0:07:28 
142Roberto Ferrari (Ita) UAE Team Emirates0:07:36 
143Anthony Turgis (Fra) Cofidis, Solutions Credits0:07:37 
144Christophe Laporte (Fra) Cofidis, Solutions Credits  
145Ian Boswell (USA) Katusha-Alpecin0:07:38 
146Yoann Offredo (Fra) Wanty-Groupe Gobert0:07:49 
147Robert Gesink (Ned) LottoNL-Jumbo0:07:54 
148Arnaud Demare (Fra) Groupama-FDJ0:08:01 
149Mathew Hayman (Aus) Mitchelton-Scott0:08:08 
150Marcel Kittel (Ger) Katusha-Alpecin0:08:11 
151Daniel Navarro Garcia (Spa) Cofidis, Solutions Credits0:08:12 
152Michael Hepburn (Aus) Mitchelton-Scott0:08:23 
153Jesus Herrada (Spa) Cofidis, Solutions Credits0:08:27 
154Rory Sutherland (Aus) UAE Team Emirates0:08:43 
155Jelle Vanendert (Bel) Lotto Soudal0:08:46 
156Franco Pellizotti (Ita) Bahrain-Merida0:08:52 
157Luke Rowe (GBr) Team Sky0:09:22 
158Damien Howson (Aus) Mitchelton-Scott0:09:31 
159Kevin Ledanois (Fra) Fortuneo-Samsic0:09:33 
160Jay Thomson (RSA) Dimension Data0:09:42 
161Daniele Bennati (Ita) Movistar Team0:10:00 
162Silvan Dillier (Swi) AG2R La Mondiale0:10:02 
163Wout Poels (Ned) Team Sky0:10:06 
164Jesper Hansen (Den) Astana Pro Team0:10:16 
165Anthony Perez (Fra) Cofidis, Solutions Credits0:10:18 
166Oliviero Troia (Ita) UAE Team Emirates0:10:23 
167Tobias Ludvigsson (Swe) Groupama-FDJ0:10:30 
168Fabien Grellier (Fra) Direct Energie0:10:34 
169Tim Declercq (Bel) Quick-Step Floors0:10:35 
170Dimitri Claeys (Bel) Cofidis, Solutions Credits0:11:32 
171Luke Durbridge (Aus) Mitchelton-Scott0:12:06 
172Jonathan Castroviejo (Spa) Team Sky0:13:18 
173Olivier Le Gac (Fra) Groupama-FDJ0:13:55 
174Lawson Craddock (USA) EF Education First-Drapac p/b Cannondale0:18:26 
Points classification
#Rider Name (Country) TeamResult
1Peter Sagan (Svk) Bora-Hansgrohe104 pts
2Fernando Gaviria (Col) Quick-Step Floors78 
3Alexander Kristoff (Nor) UAE Team Emirates53 
4Arnaud Demare (Fra) Groupama-FDJ41 
5André Greipel (Ger) Lotto Soudal35 
6Sonny Colbrelli (Ita) Bahrain-Merida30 
7Marcel Kittel (Ger) Katusha-Alpecin28 
8Sylvain Chavanel (Fra) Direct Energie20 
9Jerome Cousin (Fra) Direct Energie20 
10Timothy Dupont (Bel) Wanty-Groupe Gobert19 
11John Degenkolb (Ger) Trek-Segafredo18 
12Maciej Bodnar (Pol) Bora-Hansgrohe18 
13Andrea Pasqualon (Ita) Wanty-Groupe Gobert18 
14Kevin Ledanois (Fra) Fortuneo-Samsic17 
15Christophe Laporte (Fra) Cofidis, Solutions Credits16 
16Yoann Offredo (Fra) Wanty-Groupe Gobert15 
17Thomas Boudat (Fra) Direct Energie14 
18Dylan Groenewegen (Ned) LottoNL-Jumbo14 
19Michael Matthews (Aus) Team Sunweb12 
20Alejandro Valverde (Spa) Movistar Team12 
21Maximiliano Richeze (Arg) Quick-Step Floors10 
22Philippe Gilbert (Bel) Quick-Step Floors9 
23Daniel Oss (Ita) Bora-Hansgrohe8 
24Jakob Fuglsang (Den) Astana Pro Team8 
25Mark Cavendish (GBr) Dimension Data8 
26Rafal Majka (Pol) Bora-Hansgrohe7 
27Julian Alaphilippe (Fra) Quick-Step Floors6 
28Vincenzo Nibali (Ita) Bahrain-Merida6 
29Bob Jungels (Lux) Quick-Step Floors5 
30Jasper Stuyven (Bel) Trek-Segafredo5 
31Jacopo Guarnieri (Ita) Groupama-FDJ5 
32Guillaume Van Keirsbulck (Bel) Wanty-Groupe Gobert4 
33Geraint Thomas (GBr) Team Sky3 
34Greg Van Avermaet (Bel) BMC Racing Team2 
35Marcus Burghardt (Ger) Bora-Hansgrohe2 
36Rick Zabel (Ger) Katusha-Alpecin2 
Mountains classification
#Rider Name (Country) TeamResult
1Dion Smith (NZl) Wanty-Groupe Gobert1 
2Kevin Ledanois (Fra) Fortuneo-Samsic1 
Young riders classification
#Rider Name (Country) TeamResult
1Søren Kragh Andersen (Den) Team Sunweb9:09:06 
2Egan Bernal (Col) Team Sky0:01:08 
3Magnus Cort (Den) Astana Pro Team0:01:22 
4Thomas Boudat (Fra) Direct Energie0:01:40 
5Tiesj Benoot (Bel) Lotto Soudal0:01:41 
6Antwan Tolhoek (Ned) LottoNL-Jumbo0:01:55 
7Gregor Mühlberger (Aut) Bora-Hansgrohe0:02:09 
8Dion Smith (NZl) Wanty-Groupe Gobert0:02:13 
9Amund Grøndahl Jansen (Nor) LottoNL-Jumbo0:02:24 
10Stefan Küng (Swi) BMC Racing Team0:02:39 
11Daniel Martinez (Col) EF Education First-Drapac p/b Cannondale0:02:43 
12Elie Gesbert (Fra) Fortuneo-Samsic0:03:02 
13Guillaume Martin (Fra) Wanty-Groupe Gobert0:03:04 
14Pierre Latour (Fra) AG2R La Mondiale0:03:15 
15Gianni Moscon (Ita) Team Sky0:03:56 
16Dylan Groenewegen (Ned) LottoNL-Jumbo0:03:59 
17Rick Zabel (Ger) Katusha-Alpecin0:04:02 
18Timo Roosen (Ned) LottoNL-Jumbo0:04:29 
19Fernando Gaviria (Col) Quick-Step Floors0:04:33 
20Nils Politt (Ger) Katusha-Alpecin0:04:43 
21Jasper De Buyst (Bel) Lotto Soudal  
22Marc Soler (Spa) Movistar Team0:05:31 
23Michael Gogl (Aut) Trek-Segafredo0:06:01 
24David Gaudu (Fra) Groupama-FDJ0:06:36 
25Anthony Turgis (Fra) Cofidis, Solutions Credits0:07:26 
26Kevin Ledanois (Fra) Fortuneo-Samsic0:09:22 
27Oliviero Troia (Ita) UAE Team Emirates0:10:12 
28Fabien Grellier (Fra) Direct Energie0:10:23 
29Olivier Le Gac (Fra) Groupama-FDJ0:13:44 
Teams classification
#Rider Name (Country) TeamResult
1Quick-Step Floors26:09:20 
2Team Sunweb0:00:04 
4BMC Racing Team0:00:44 
5Astana Pro Team  
8EF Education First-Drapac p/b Cannondale0:01:02 
11AG2R La Mondiale0:01:32 
13Direct Energie0:01:44 
14Dimension Data0:01:45 
15Lotto Soudal  
16Movistar Team0:02:01 
17Team Sky0:02:03 
18UAE Team Emirates  
19Wanty-Groupe Gobert0:02:17 
22Cofidis, Solutions Credits0:03:16 

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