Of the 15 Grand Tours Greipel has ridden, the 2017 Tour is just the third of his career that he hasn't won a stage and is his first since the 2008 Giro d'Italia without a victory. In 2015 and 2016, the Lotto-Soudal fastman won the final stage of the Tour and was aiming for a third straight on the Champs-Élysées. However, the Dutchman 11 years his junior proved the strongest of the duo.
"I wanted to win here and today, but that didn't work out. 'Almost' is not winning. Maybe I should have gone earlier," Greipel told Radsport-news.com. "But that's the way it is. Congratulations to Groenewegen. He rode a long sprint up front in the wind and made it to the end, that was really strong."
Lotto Soudal end the Tour without a win with Thomas De Gendt's stage combativity prize its sole visit to the podium. The Belgian controversy missed out on the super-combative prize in Paris despite spending over 1000km in breakaways.
A stage winner and wearer of the maglia rosa at the Giro, Greipel was confident of continuing his stage-winning success at the Tour. Three third place results in the first six stages suggested the 35-year-old would get his win but only recorded top-ten results on stages 7 and 11 before the Paris finale.
"I am not entirely satisfied with this Tour, the team is not satisfied either. We would have liked to have won a stage!" he added to Radsport.
Since 2008, Greipel has won at least ten races in a season with 2011 when he won eight the exception. With the Tour done and dusted, Greipel is on four wins on the season and surely has a fire in his belly to make up for the Tour disappointment and secure double figure wins for 2017.
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