Tour de France 2019: Stage 1 finish line quotes

Mike Teunissen (Jumbo-Visma) – stage 1 winner

"I cannot believe it. We were working for weeks, for months to bring Dylan [Groenewegen] here to the win and yellow jersey, and then with 1.5km to go everything disappears because he goes down in a crash.

"Then I thought I'm still here, still fresh so we can try it. I saw everyone dying in the last metres – even Sagan I was catching up on. I just took him on the line and, like I said, it's beyond imagining. It's unbelievable.

"I couldn't clearly see if [Groenewegen] crashed or not so I just stayed in position and then I heard that he went down. Like I said, I felt good because we were in a good position. Then I thought I'll go for it. I still had Wout [Van Aert] with me, he also could do something, and it was just enough.

"It was a really strange day because our big goal disappears at 1.5km. But I hope Dylan can still smile a little bit if I take this with me to the room I think it'll take me some days more to imagine it because you can dream about it – the possibility to win a stage – but now it's working out pretty nice, I would say."(Eurosport)

Caleb Ewan (Lotto Soudal) – third on stage 1

"Obviously, I was going for the win today and I'm disappointed because it's not every day we can go for the yellow jersey and I feel like it was a bit of an opportunity missed.

"I mean [white] is better than nothing. At the end of the day all we want to do is win and second or third is not really good enough.

"It was [crazy]. There were riders everywhere and no real organised lead-outs. Every sprinter was there by himself and it's hard to navigate your way through a sprint like that.

"I think I should've been a little further up front in the last 500 metres when we started going up the hill. But I felt like I was coming quite quick and I felt like I had the legs to win, so I'm very disappointed that I couldn't get through in the end."(Eurosport)

Steve Cummings (Dimension Data)

"It was really good. What was [Giacomo Nizzolo] – fourth? So that's really promising for the sprints ahead.

"It was stressful but because there was two or three points in the race where it was stressful it kind of made it all a bit grey, if you know what I mean. Instead of there being one point where everybody knows that point, it made it hard all day. For me, it wasn't as bad as it has been in previous years.

"I'll just go day-by-day. It's about the team really. If the team can win one stage with whoever then we'll be really happy." (Eurosport)

Rolf Aldag (Dimension Data) – head of performance

"[Giacomo Nizzolo] is really good at finding his way and we are happy everyone got up and kept riding. It would be really frustrating for the first race of the Tour to be the end. That was the best result we could hope for.

"I already said it this morning and I think everything has been said about [Mark Cavendish]. We support the eight guys that are here, and that's it.

"It's not relevant [if I wanted Mark Cavendish to race]. The decision has been taken, and the first stage has been written, so of course that is what I said and you can read it everywhere, and it's not relevant anymore. Our guys deserve full support."(Eurosport)


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