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Tour de France 2019 stage 18 finish line quotes

Nairo Quintana (Movistar) wins stage 18 at the Tour de France

Nairo Quintana (Movistar) wins stage 18 at the Tour de France (Image credit: Getty Images)

Nairo Quintana (Movistar) - Stage 18 winner

"This win reflects the amount of work I've put in to be ready for this type of performance. It was a really grand day for me, and it  was within the team strategy. We wanted to put ourselves in the right position for winning the stage and for Mikel Landa to improve his GC position. So it's a fantastic day for me, my family and for the team, for my teammates and for the country.

"This stage was one for the pure climbers, for the real climbers in the bunch, and I was present. I was ready for it. It's a beautiful win, and on a stage like this, with this type of profile, it makes me emotional." (ASO Pool)

Mikel Landa (Movistar) - Eighth overall

Why was Movistar working when Quintana was off the front?

"Because we also have some guys to do something on the GC, so ..."

"Pfft." Long pause. "We will see, no? We have to play it tactically with our riders."

What is the most important thing for the team right now?

"Finishing on the podium in Paris."

"We will see tomorrow." (NBC Sports)

Geraint Thomas (Team Ineos) - Third on GC behind Egan Bernal

"We wanted it to be hard, but the pace wasn’t there. The call was made for Egan to go and hopefully that would kick if off a bit, but it didn’t really – Mas just started riding his tempo. That’s when I went as well, just to test. But at least Egan gained some time on everyone else.

"I was feeling pretty good today. Two big days to come now. We kind of knew that today wouldn’t be a huge difference, but it's certainly going to put some fatigue in everyone for the next two days." (Eurosport)

Egan Bernal (Team Ineos) - Moved up to second on GC

"I felt good, and I'm happy that in the end we’ve gained time on Julian Alaphilippe. That was our number one goal. G [Geraint Thomas] told me to attack and make that jump, and he said that then he'd try. We're a team, and everything we do is because the directeur sportif in the car tells us to do."

Damiano Caruso (Bahrain-Merida

"It was a perfect stage for Quintana, but it was a good day for me too. I knew it would have been hard to win, but I had to try. If I've got anything left after today, I can perhaps try again.

"I was motivated by being in L’Equipe today. It was a big interview about me as a rider and as a person. It’s nice to see that my hard work and my personality is recognised even outside of Italy."

Enric Mas (Deceuninck-QuickStep)

"We did our very best, so we're happy. We've still got a lead of about 1:30, and now there's only two hard days left in this Tour. Julian [Alaphilippe] was great again today, especially on the descent. He’s still up there. Tomorrow will be another hard day, but we've got to sty clam and be ready."

Romain Bardet (AG2R La Mondiale) – Second on stage and new mountains competition leader

"I took the polka-dot jersey and I'm happy to have it. It wasn't expected after such a hard Tour for me, but I felt good today. I didn’t win the stage, but this could make something good out of my Tour."

Steven Kruijswijk (Jumbo-Visma) - Fourth overall

"[Thomas' attack after Bernal] was [Team Inbeos'] plan. It was a good surprise, and if it works it works. He didn't put the attack of Bernal in danger, because he was already out of sight a bit. If he could have come across it was a really good plan, but it didn't work out."