Frenchman Alaphilippe snatches Yellow Jersey back after Huge Attack
Thomas De Gendt won a hilly stage 8 after surviving being in the breakaway for 200 km. Pinot and Alaphilippe attacked in the final 12 kms to take time out of their rivals. Team Ineos crashed and Geraint Thomas fought to stay in GC contention
It was another lumpy long stage, 200 kms with seven catgorized climbs.
Four riders got into the breakaway; Thomas De Gendt (Lotto Soudal), Niki Terpstra (Total Direct Energie), Ben King (Dimension Data) and Thomas De Gendt (CCC Team) who built up a maximum lead of well over 4 minutes.
With 38 kms to go and the climbs taking their toll, Thomas De Gendt and Thomas De Gendt dropped their two companions and pressed on.
Behind the peloton started to chase and with 18 kms to go their lead dropped to 1m 22s.
Then all hell broke lose, with 15 kms to go on the slopes of the final climb of Cote de Jaillere, team Ineos crashed bring down Geraint Thomas and Kwitokoski. Thomas's Pinarello was split in two. Thomas got at Kwiato's bike and desperately chased to get back to the main peloton.
With 13 kms to go on the descent of the Cote de Jaillere, Frenchman Alaphilippe attacked taking countryman Pinot with him.
The quickly built up a lead 15 secs on the desperatley chasing bunch, Ciccone in the Yellow jersey was seen doing most of the work.
Out front with 3 kms to go Thomas De Gendt (Lotto Soudal) reached the final 900 km climb 19 secs lead.
Alaphilippe and Pinot pushed on to catch him, but at the top of the climb with 2 kms to go he still had 16 secs lead.
de Gendt crossed the line 6 seconds ahead of Pinot and Alaphilippe, a full 20 seconds ahead the peloton.
A brilliant win for de Gendt after 200kms in the breakaway, his second Tour de France stage win.
Alaphilippe snatched the Yellow jersey from Ciccone who leads by 23 seconds, countryman Pinot moved up to third in GC, 53 seconds behind.
VIDEO: 2019 Tour de France Stage 8 Highlights
2019 Tour de France Stage 8 Top 10
1 Thomas De Gendt (Bel) Lotto Soudal
2 Thibaut Pinot (Fra) Groupama-FDJ
3 Julian Alaphilippe (Fra) Deceuninck-QuickStep
4 Michael Matthews (Aus) Team Sunweb
5 Peter Sagan (Svk) Bora-Hansgrohe
6 Matteo Trentin (Ita) Mitchelton-Scott
7 Xandro Meurisse (Bel) Wanty-Gobert
8 Greg Van Avermaet (Bel) CCC Team
9 Egan Bernal (Col) Team Ineos
10 Geraint Thomas (GBr) Team Ineos
2019 Tour de France GC after Stage 8
1 Julian Alaphilippe (Fra) Deceuninck-QuickStep 34:17:59
2 Giulio Ciccone (Ita) Trek-Segafredo 0:00:23
3 Thibaut Pinot (Fra) Groupama-FDJ 0:00:53
4 George Bennett (NZl) Team Jumbo-Visma 0:01:10
5 Geraint Thomas (GBr) Team Ineos 0:01:12
6 Egan Bernal (Col) Team Ineos 0:01:16
7 Steven Kruijswijk (Ned) Team Jumbo-Visma 0:01:27
8 Rigoberto Uran (Col) EF Education First 0:01:38
9 Jakob Fuglsang (Den) Astana Pro Team 0:01:42
10 Emanuel Buchmann (Ger) Bora-Hansgrohe 0:01:45