Tour de France: Quintana wins short stage 17 atop Col du Portet

Nairo Quintana (Movistar) won stage 17 of the Tour de France on Wednesday, attacking on the final climb and riding alone to the summit of Col du Portet for his first Tour stage win in five years.

Dan Martin (UAE Team Emirates) finished second, 28 seconds behind, while overall race leader Geraint Thomas (Team Sky) fought off all challengers on the final climb to finish third at 47 seconds and keep his yellow jersey. Four-time champion Chris Froome saw his chances for a fifth win fade in the final kilometres as he finished 1:35 down on Quintana.

"It was a hard day, but we'd prepared well for it," Quintana said at the finish. "It went as exactly as we'd planned. We had Valverde and Soler up front, and their riding helped shake out the peloton. We knew it was a stage for pure climbers, and we showed our strength.

"I had some difficult moments in the first part of this Tour and lost some time, but I still felt strong and had the energy to finish the race on a high," Quintana said. "I usually improve in the third week of the Tour, and it's going that way."

Quintana attacked with Martin after teammate Marc Soler set the pace in the peloton at the bottom of the final climb. The Colombian quickly dropped Martin and then steadily swept up riders from the day's earlier moves. Rafal Majka (Bora-Hansgrohe) initially stayed with Quintana as they sped past solo leader Tanel Kangert (Astana), but the Pole eventually lost contact with just over 6km remaining.

Froome, meanwhile, benefited from the efforts of 21-year-old teammate Egan Bernal, who set the pace in the yellow jersey group over the final kilometres until the four-time champion cracked and lost the pace. The young Colombian sat up and waited, but Froome could not match attacks from Dumoulin and then Roglic, who were unable to dispatch Thomas.

Thomas now leads Dumoulin in the general classification by 1:59, while Froome dropped to third, another 32 seconds back. Roglic is fourth at 2:47, while Quintana moved from eighth to fifth at 3:30.

The Colombian stage winner said he wanted to win for his fans back home.

"All the support I've had from everyone, as well as my family and friends, really helped me today," Quintana said. "We were a bit down in the last days, so we needed this win. It's a wonderful day today."

How it happened

The 65km 17th stage from Bagnères-de-Luchon to Saint-Lary-Soulan always promised fireworks, and it delivered from the starting gun on Wednesday. After lining up in the Tour's first-ever Formula 1-type grid start by GC ranking, the riders started climbing immediately on the category 1 Col de Peyresourde/Montée de Peyragudes, reaching the 1,645m summit just 15km into the day.

A quick descent into Loudenvielle led to the category 1 Col de Val Louron-Azet at 37km. from there, another long descent took the riders to the final gruelling climb, the hors category Col du Portet, the highest peak of the Tour at 2,215m on a road that was only paved just a few weeks before the Tour.

As expected, the attacks started immediately on the Col de Peyresourde, with 22 riders moving clear of the Team Sky-led peloton. Astana's Tanel Kangert and Cofidis' Nicolas Edet set off ahead of a 20-rider chase that included, among others, Alejandro Valverde and Movistar teammate Marc Soler, Adam Yates (Mitchelton-Scott) with teammate Mikel Nieve, and Julian Alaphlippe (Quick-Step Floors) in the polka dot jersey.

The mountains leader jumped away from the chase with Kristijan Durasek (UAE Team Emirates) and Jesus Herrada (Cofidis) in a bridging attempt to the duo up front. The trio swept up Edet first as the Cofidis couldn't hold Kangert's pace. They immediately dropped Edet and set off for the lone leader.

Further down the road, Soler was setting a pace that started splintering the large chase group, and chase 2 was quickly down to just 10 riders, including Soler, Valverde, Yates, Herrada, Gregor Mühlberger (Bora-Hansgrohe), Rafal Majka (Bora-Hansgrohe), Omar Fraile (Astana), Daniel Navarro (Cofidis), Dani Martinez (EF Education First-Drapac) and Franco Pellizotti (Bahrain-Merida).

Kangert crested the Peyresourde with 20 seconds over the chasing trio, 1:13 over the second chase group and 3:18 over the peloton. Alaphlippe's daring descending skills left Herrada behind as he and Durasek caught Kangert on the downhill.

Col de Val Louron-Azet

The lead trio carried more than a minute over the chase into the base of the day's second ascent, where Team Sky were neutralising multiple attacks on the lower slopes. Pierre Latour went to the front of the peloton for AG2R La Mondiale team leader Romain Bardet, setting a pace that had riders popping out of the back of the group, while Martinez upped the pace in the chase group and was soon riding with just Valverde, Majka, Pellizotti and Fraile in pursuit of the leaders.

Mühlberger clawed his way back to the chase group and immediately went to the front for Majka, closing the gap to the leaders to just 43 seconds over the top of the climb. Mühlberger's effort cost him dearly, however, as he cracked before the summit and nearly came to a stop on the side of the road. Majka went over the top with Valverde, Martinez, Pellizotti and Fraile, while the peloton, now led by Movistar's Soler, crested the climb 2:10 behind the leaders.

Alaphilippe put his descending skills to work again, dropping Durasek on the downhill while Kangert took big risks to keep the flying Frenchman in check.

Col du Portet

Alaphilippe and Kangert started the final 16km climb with a 1:10 gap over the chase and 2:35 to the peloton. The Frenchman cracked at the bottom of the climb, leaving Kangert to go on alone in search of stage glory. Valverde attacked the chase group and dropped Pellizotti, while Kangert started opening up his gap. Another effort from Valverde dropped everyone but Martinez and Majka.

Back in the peloton, Soler pressed the pace on the front, while Team Sky sat just behind keeping the Movistar rider in check. Martin then jumped away with Quintana, but Team Sky did not react and continued to tap out the tempo with Jonathan Castroviejo on the front.

Quintana distanced Martin and continued on alone, sweeping up earlier breakaway riders Yates, Navarro, Durasek and Alaphilippe, and then setting off for Valverde's group.

Roglic jumped out of the bunch with 13.5km to go and was quickly marked by Froome. The Slovenian set the pace with Froome tucked in his slipstream, while Dumoulin went to the front of the peloton in pursuit.

The pace whittled the Dumoulin-led yellow jersey group to Thomas, Bardet, Steven Kruijswijk (LottoNL-Jumbo), Mikel Landa (Movistar) and Bernal, and they soon had Roglic and Froome back under control.

Further up the road, Quintana joined Valverde's group as Kangert continued on alone at the head of affairs. Valverde and Quintana dropped all but Majka and whittled Kangert's lead down to a minute with 11km to go, while Dan Martin was at 1:10 and the yellow jersey group was 1:40 back.

Valverde couldn't hold Quintana's pace and lost contact with his teammate and Majka, who closed to within 30 seconds of the leader with 9km remaining. Martin passed Valverde and had Quintana and Majka in sight as the gap to Kangert continued to come down quickly.

Quintana and Majka caught and dropped Kangert with 8.5km to go to form a new lead duo at the front of the race, with Martin lagging 15 seconds back and the yellow jersey group at 1:02. Quintana set the pace up front as Majka was happy to follow, while Team Sky continued to power the chase for Thomas and Froome.

Majka cracked with 6.4km remaining, leaving the Colombian on the front alone with more than a minute back to the Wout Poels-led yellow jersey group of nine riders. Bardet lost contact with that group as Martin reeled in Majka further up the road.

Kruijswijk put in a dig with just under 5km to go, and the acceleration put Poels and Valverde out of the yellow jersey group. Team Sky's Bernal then took up the chase, followed in order by Thomas, Froome, Dumoulin, Roglic and Landa. Bernal quickly brought Kruijswijk back into the fold, and the Thomas group then swept up Majka with 3km to go, leaving just Quintana and Martin up the road.

Roglic attacked under the 3km banner, but Bernal easily marked the move although it distanced Landa and Froome. Bernal recognised the situation and sat up, fading back to pace the four-time Tour champion.

Dumoulin sensed the opportunity and went next, dragging Thomas, Roglic and Kruijswijk with him as Bernal waited for Froome. Roglic accelerated in turn, opening a small gap that Thomas had to close down while Dumoulin struggled and Kruijswijk also dropped back.

With 1km remaining, the finishing order was pretty much set. Quintana had 35 seconds on Martin and 53 seconds on the yellow jersey group of Thomas, Roglic, and Dumoulin. Kruijswijk was fighting to get back on terms and Froome was struggling lower on the climb, led by Bernal.

Full Results

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#Rider Name (Country) TeamResult
1Nairo Quintana (Col) Movistar Team2:21:27
2Daniel Martin (Irl) UAE Team Emirates0:00:28
3Geraint Thomas (GBr) Team Sky0:00:47
4Primoz Roglic (Slo) LottoNL-Jumbo0:00:52
5Tom Dumoulin (Ned) Team SunwebRow 4 - Cell 2
6Steven Kruijswijk (Ned) LottoNL-Jumbo0:01:05
7Egan Bernal (Col) Team Sky0:01:33
8Chris Froome (GBr) Team Sky0:01:35
9Mikel Landa (Spa) Movistar TeamRow 8 - Cell 2
10Ilnur Zakarin (Rus) Katusha-Alpecin0:02:01
11Rafal Majka (Pol) Bora-Hansgrohe0:02:20
12Alejandro Valverde (Spa) Movistar Team0:02:32
13Romain Bardet (Fra) AG2R La Mondiale0:02:35
14David Gaudu (Fra) Groupama-FDJ0:03:23
15Jakob Fuglsang (Den) Astana Pro Team0:04:00
16Warren Barguil (Fra) Fortuneo-Samsic0:04:15
17Bob Jungels (Lux) Quick-Step Floors0:05:10
18Jesper Hansen (Den) Astana Pro TeamRow 17 - Cell 2
19Wout Poels (Ned) Team Sky0:05:12
20Tanel Kangert (Est) Astana Pro Team0:05:38
21Antwan Tolhoek (Ned) LottoNL-Jumbo0:06:00
22Franco Pellizotti (Ita) Bahrain-Merida0:06:11
23Pierre Latour (Fra) AG2R La Mondiale0:06:52
24Nicolas Edet (Fra) Cofidis, Solutions Credits0:08:12
25Daniel Martinez (Col) EF Education First-Drapac p/b Cannondale0:09:08
26Kristijan Durasek (Cro) UAE Team EmiratesRow 25 - Cell 2
27Tejay van Garderen (USA) BMC Racing TeamRow 26 - Cell 2
28Gorka Izagirre (Spa) Bahrain-Merida0:09:59
29Guillaume Martin (Fra) Wanty-Groupe Gobert0:10:50
30Pierre Rolland (Fra) EF Education First-Drapac p/b CannondaleRow 29 - Cell 2
31Bauke Mollema (Ned) Trek-SegafredoRow 30 - Cell 2
32Arthur Vichot (Fra) Groupama-FDJRow 31 - Cell 2
33Omar Fraile (Spa) Astana Pro Team0:11:30
34Simon Geschke (Ger) Team Sunweb0:11:39
35Jesus Herrada (Spa) Cofidis, Solutions Credits0:12:22
36Domenico Pozzovivo (Ita) Bahrain-Merida0:13:25
37Thomas Degand (Bel) Wanty-Groupe GobertRow 36 - Cell 2
38Jonathan Castroviejo (Spa) Team Sky0:13:33
39Ion Izagirre (Spa) Bahrain-MeridaRow 38 - Cell 2
40Daniel Navarro Garcia (Spa) Cofidis, Solutions CreditsRow 39 - Cell 2
41Gregor Mühlberger (Aut) Bora-HansgroheRow 40 - Cell 2
42Adam Yates (GBr) Mitchelton-ScottRow 41 - Cell 2
43Pavel Kochetkov (Rus) Katusha-AlpecinRow 42 - Cell 2
44Darwin Atapuma (Col) UAE Team EmiratesRow 43 - Cell 2
45Romain Sicard (Fra) Direct EnergieRow 44 - Cell 2
46Julien Bernard (Fra) Trek-Segafredo0:13:56
47Julian Alaphilippe (Fra) Quick-Step Floors0:14:05
48Tobias Ludvigsson (Swe) Groupama-FDJ0:14:43
49Sylvain Chavanel (Fra) Direct Energie0:14:51
50Nikias Arndt (Ger) Team Sunweb0:15:07
51Yoann Offredo (Fra) Wanty-Groupe Gobert0:15:24
52Marco Minnaard (Ned) Wanty-Groupe Gobert0:16:04
53Rudy Molard (Fra) Groupama-FDJ0:16:06
54Robert Gesink (Ned) LottoNL-Jumbo0:16:13
55Lilian Calmejane (Fra) Direct Energie0:16:16
56Anthony Perez (Fra) Cofidis, Solutions Credits0:16:21
57Mikel Nieve (Spa) Mitchelton-Scott0:17:53
58Laurens ten Dam (Ned) Team Sunweb0:18:50
59Michal Kwiatkowski (Pol) Team Sky0:19:30
60Marc Soler (Spa) Movistar TeamRow 59 - Cell 2
61Maxime Bouet (Fra) Fortuneo-SamsicRow 60 - Cell 2
62Kevin Ledanois (Fra) Fortuneo-SamsicRow 61 - Cell 2
63Oliver Naesen (Bel) AG2R La Mondiale0:19:37
64Jasper Stuyven (Bel) Trek-SegafredoRow 63 - Cell 2
65Stefan Küng (Swi) BMC Racing TeamRow 64 - Cell 2
66Mathias Frank (Swi) AG2R La MondialeRow 65 - Cell 2
67Julien Vermote (Bel) Dimension DataRow 66 - Cell 2
68Michael Valgren (Den) Astana Pro TeamRow 67 - Cell 2
69Chad Haga (USA) Team SunwebRow 68 - Cell 2
70Rory Sutherland (Aus) UAE Team EmiratesRow 69 - Cell 2
71Greg Van Avermaet (Bel) BMC Racing TeamRow 70 - Cell 2
72Guillaume Van Keirsbulck (Bel) Wanty-Groupe GobertRow 71 - Cell 2
73Damiano Caruso (Ita) BMC Racing TeamRow 72 - Cell 2
74Michael Schär (Swi) BMC Racing TeamRow 73 - Cell 2
75Paul Martens (Ger) LottoNL-JumboRow 74 - Cell 2
76Ian Boswell (USA) Katusha-AlpecinRow 75 - Cell 2
77Imanol Erviti (Spa) Movistar TeamRow 76 - Cell 2
78Julien Simon (Fra) Cofidis, Solutions Credits0:19:42
79Jack Bauer (NZl) Mitchelton-Scott0:20:11
80Edward Theuns (Bel) Team Sunweb0:20:37
81Yves Lampaert (Bel) Quick-Step Floors0:20:39
82Jerome Cousin (Fra) Direct Energie0:20:41
83Anthony Turgis (Fra) Cofidis, Solutions Credits0:20:45
84Tomasz Marczynski (Pol) Lotto Soudal0:20:55
85Silvan Dillier (Swi) AG2R La Mondiale0:21:03
86Jay Thomson (RSA) Dimension Data0:21:44
87Daryl Impey (RSA) Mitchelton-ScottRow 86 - Cell 2
88Andrea Pasqualon (Ita) Wanty-Groupe Gobert0:22:03
89Tom-Jelte Slagter (Ned) Dimension Data0:22:12
90Thomas Boudat (Fra) Direct Energie0:22:20
91Florian Vachon (Fra) Fortuneo-Samsic0:23:06
92Laurent Pichon (Fra) Fortuneo-SamsicRow 91 - Cell 2
93Romain Hardy (Fra) Fortuneo-Samsic0:23:08
94Amael Moinard (Fra) Fortuneo-SamsicRow 93 - Cell 2
95Elie Gesbert (Fra) Fortuneo-SamsicRow 94 - Cell 2
96Dimitri Claeys (Bel) Cofidis, Solutions Credits0:23:22
97Simon Gerrans (Aus) BMC Racing Team0:23:28
98Luke Durbridge (Aus) Mitchelton-ScottRow 97 - Cell 2
99Dion Smith (NZl) Wanty-Groupe GobertRow 98 - Cell 2
100Marco Marcato (Ita) UAE Team EmiratesRow 99 - Cell 2
101Reinardt Janse Van Rensburg (RSA) Dimension DataRow 100 - Cell 2
102Olivier Le Gac (Fra) Groupama-FDJ0:24:09
103Nils Politt (Ger) Katusha-Alpecin0:24:31
104Magnus Cort (Den) Astana Pro Team0:24:36
105Søren Kragh Andersen (Den) Team SunwebRow 104 - Cell 2
106Timo Roosen (Ned) LottoNL-Jumbo0:24:39
107Simon Clarke (Aus) EF Education First-Drapac p/b Cannondale0:24:43
108Damien Gaudin (Fra) Direct Energie0:25:22
109Toms Skujins (Lat) Trek-Segafredo0:25:25
110Edvald Boasson Hagen (Nor) Dimension DataRow 109 - Cell 2
111Luke Rowe (GBr) Team Sky0:25:29
112Sonny Colbrelli (Ita) Bahrain-Merida0:25:32
113Oliviero Troia (Ita) UAE Team Emirates0:25:48
114Daniel Oss (Ita) Bora-HansgroheRow 113 - Cell 2
115Jasper De Buyst (Bel) Lotto SoudalRow 114 - Cell 2
116Thomas De Gendt (Bel) Lotto SoudalRow 115 - Cell 2
117Koen de Kort (Ned) Trek-SegafredoRow 116 - Cell 2
118Fabien Grellier (Fra) Direct EnergieRow 117 - Cell 2
119Sep Vanmarcke (Bel) EF Education First-Drapac p/b CannondaleRow 118 - Cell 2
120John Degenkolb (Ger) Trek-SegafredoRow 119 - Cell 2
121Mathew Hayman (Aus) Mitchelton-ScottRow 120 - Cell 2
122Taylor Phinney (USA) EF Education First-Drapac p/b CannondaleRow 121 - Cell 2
123Heinrich Haussler (Aus) Bahrain-MeridaRow 122 - Cell 2
124Tom Scully (NZl) EF Education First-Drapac p/b CannondaleRow 123 - Cell 2
125Lawson Craddock (USA) EF Education First-Drapac p/b CannondaleRow 124 - Cell 2
126Andrey Amador (CRc) Movistar TeamRow 125 - Cell 2
127Daniele Bennati (Ita) Movistar TeamRow 126 - Cell 2
128Pawel Poljanski (Pol) Bora-HansgroheRow 127 - Cell 2
129Amund Grøndahl Jansen (Nor) LottoNL-Jumbo0:26:01
130Niki Terpstra (Ned) Quick-Step Floors0:26:14
131Lukas Pöstlberger (Aut) Bora-Hansgrohe0:26:22
132Michael Gogl (Aut) Trek-SegafredoRow 131 - Cell 2
133Kristijan Koren (Slo) Bahrain-MeridaRow 132 - Cell 2
134Peter Sagan (Svk) Bora-Hansgrohe0:26:29
135Marcus Burghardt (Ger) Bora-HansgroheRow 134 - Cell 2
136Maciej Bodnar (Pol) Bora-Hansgrohe0:26:39
137Roberto Ferrari (Ita) UAE Team Emirates0:27:18
138Alexander Kristoff (Nor) UAE Team Emirates0:27:23
139Christophe Laporte (Fra) Cofidis, Solutions Credits0:27:36
140Jacopo Guarnieri (Ita) Groupama-FDJ0:27:52
141Maximiliano Richeze (Arg) Quick-Step Floors0:28:01
142Timothy Dupont (Bel) Wanty-Groupe Gobert0:28:26
143Ramon Sinkeldam (Ned) Groupama-FDJ0:28:30
144Jelle Vanendert (Bel) Lotto Soudal0:28:59
145Arnaud Demare (Fra) Groupama-FDJ0:29:16
146Michael Hepburn (Aus) Mitchelton-Scott0:31:30
DNSPhilippe Gilbert (Bel) Quick-Step FloorsRow 146 - Cell 2
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Points
#Rider Name (Country) TeamResultHeader Cell - Column 3
1Nairo Quintana (Col) Movistar Team20pts
2Daniel Martin (Irl) UAE Team Emirates17Row 1 - Cell 3
3Geraint Thomas (GBr) Team Sky15