Tour de France: Dan Martin fights back as Yates takes stage 15
Irish rider up to 15th overall after putting Saturday’s poor performance behind him
Stage 15 winner Simon Yates in action between Limoux and Foix Prat d’Albis. Photograph: Anne-Christine Poujoulat/AFP/Getty
Dan Martin put in a brave fight on Sunday’s 15th stage of the Tour de France, bouncing back from Saturday’s disappointment to go in the day’s big breakaway. He and first cousin Nicolas Roche (Team Sunweb) were part of a 28 man break which got clear early on, and made a further selection when the move dropped to 16 riders on the climb of the Port de Lers.
Martin had been under pressure early on but appeared to gain strength as the stage continued. Roche eventually slipped back but Martin was still to the fore heading into the final ten kilometres. However he cracked when Spanish rider Mikel Landa (Movistar Team) bridged across from the peloton inside the final ten kilometres and forced the pace.
“It was brutal out there today,” said Martin. “We expected a big group to go early and after the disappointment of yesterday I wanted to be in the race again and enjoy racing. I didn’t think they were going to let me go. I waited until it was really hard, and then made the split on the climb.”
He eventually finished 21st, three minutes 38 seconds behind the stage winner Simon Yates (Mitchelton-Scott), who had also been in the break. Roche placed 64th.
“I’m looking forward to the rest day now,” Martin continued. “I’ve been riding GC [general classification] for two weeks and obviously yesterday it didn’t go to plan. I was just a little disappointed today that I got caught when I did. Today was probably the hardest day I’ve ever done on the Tour de France.”
It is not clear why Martin’s form dipped on Saturday, but he will be hoping to be back to his usual level and to land a stage win in the final week of the race. He climbs one place to 15th overall, while Roche is 37th. The Tour has a rest day on Monday, with racing resuming on Tuesday with an undulating stage to Nîmes.
Tour de France (WorldTour)
Stage 15, Limoux to Foix: 1, Simon Yates (Mitchelton-Scott) 185 kilometres in 4 hours 47 mins 4 secs ; 2, T. Pinot (Groupama-FDJ) at 33 secs ; 3, M. Landa (Movistar Team) same time; 4, E. Buchmann (Bora-Hansgrohe) at 51 secs ; 5, E. Bernal (Team Ineos) same time; 6, L. Kämna (Team Sunweb) at 1 min 3 secs
Irish: 21, D. Martin (UAE Team Emirates) at 3 mins 38 secs ; 64, N. Roche (Team Sunweb) at 24 mins 30 secs
Sprint 1 - Tarascon-Sur-Ariège, km. 93.5: 1, Michael Matthews (Team Sunweb) 20 pts; 2, N. Politt (Katusha-Alpecin) 17 ; 3, D. Caruso (Bahrain-Merida) 15
Mountain 1 (Cat. 2) Col De Montségur, km. 60.5: 1, Michael Woods (EF Education First) 5 pts; 2, V. Nibali (Bahrain-Merida) 3 ; 3, R. Bardet (AG2R La Mondiale) 2
Mountain 2 (Cat. 1) Port De Lers, km. 120.5: 1, Romain Bardet (AG2R La Mondiale) 10 pts; 2, S. Geschke (CCC Team) 8 ; 3, M. Soler (Movistar Team) 6
Mountain 3 (Cat. 1) Mur De Péguère, km. 147: 1, Simon Geschke (CCC Team) 10 pts; 2, S. Yates (Mitchelton-Scott) 8 ; 3, R. Bardet (AG2R La Mondiale) 6
Mountain 4 (Cat. 1) Foix Prat D’Albis, km. 185: 1, Simon Yates (Mitchelton-Scott) 10 pts; 2, T. Pinot (Groupama-FDJ) 8 ; 3, M. Landa (Movistar Team) 6
Young riders: 1, Egan Bernal (Team Ineos) 4 hours 47 mins 55 secs ; 2, L. Kämna (Team Sunweb) at 12 secs ; 3, D. Gaudu (Groupama-FDJ) at 4 mins 29 secs
Combativity: 1, Mikel Landa (Movistar Team)
Teams: 1, Team Ineos, 14 hours 25 mins 14 secs ; 2, Movistar Team, at 51 secs ; 3, Groupama-FDJ, at 4 mins 46 secs
General classification after stage 15: 1, Julian Alaphilippe (Deceuninck-QuickStep, 61 hours 22 secs ; 2, G. Thomas (Team Ineos) at 1 min 35 secs ; 3, S. Kruijswijk (Team Jumbo-Visma) at 1 min 47 secs ; 4, T. Pinot (Groupama-FDJ) at 1 min 50 secs ; 5, E. Bernal (Team Ineos) at 2 mins 2 secs ; 6, E. Buchmann (Bora-Hansgrohe) at 2 mins 14 secs
Irish: 15, D. Martin (UAE Team Emirates) at 11 mins 39 secs ; 37, N. Roche (Team Sunweb) at 57 mins 25 secs
Points classification: 1, Peter Sagan (Bora-Hansgrohe) 284 pts; 2, S. Colbrelli (Bahrain-Merida) 191 ; 3, M. Matthews (Team Sunweb) 187
Mountains classification: 1, Tim Wellens (Lotto Soudal) 64 pts; 2, T. Pinot (Groupama-FDJ) 50 ; 3, T. De Gendt (Lotto Soudal) 37
Young riders classification: 1, Egan Bernal (Team Ineos) 61 hours 2 mins 24 secs ; 2, D. Gaudu (Groupama-FDJ) at 12 mins 29 secs ; 3, E. Mas (Deceuninck-QuickStep) at 33 mins 16 secs
Teams classification: 1, Movistar Team, 183 hours 28 mins 20 secs ; 2, Trek-Segafredo, at 30 mins 45 secs ; 3, Team Ineos, at 30 mins 54 secs
Other: 11, UAE Team Emirates, at 1 hour 15 mins 38 secs ; 13, Team Sunweb, 2 hours 19 mins 29 secs