Australian Caleb Ewan wins his first Tour de France Stage

Ewan out-sprinted Groenewegen, Viviani and Sagan to secure his first Tour de France stage win!

Australians will be celebrating around the world tonight, as sprint ace Caleb Ewan finally got his first stage win.

Ewan threw his bike across the line to beat Groenewegen by hair's width, behind Elia Viviani and Peter Sagan had already sat up, taking third and fourth respectively.

Ewan suffered some rough sprint finishes up to this point, boxed out on stage 1, really bad leadout on stage 4 and then launching his sprint too late on stage 7.

Despite all this Ewan never gave up and today, with a perfect lead out from his Lotto Soudal teammates this time round, Ewan delivered the good.

Today's stage from 167 km stage Albi to Toulouse was fairly uneventful until the finale. The stage headed south towards the foothills of the Pyrenees for the second week of the Tour de France.

Four riders went away in the break, Stephane Rossetto and Anthony Pere from (Cofidis), Aime De Gendt (Wanty-Groupe Gobert) and Lilian Calmejane (Total Direct Energie), a local from Albi. 

They built up a maximum lead of nearly four minutes, but weren't allowed to get too far in front.

There was a crash in the peloton with 30km to go. Nairo Quintana, Richie Porte and Michael Woods were involved but back on. Niki Terpstra dropped out of the race with a broken collarbone.

The crash split the peloton into three parts with Quintana and Porte chasing to rejoin the main group. Sprinter Giacomo Nizzolo was caught up in the crash and was injured slightly.

As the stage drew to a close, the peloton accelerated again and the catch to the breakaway was made with around 13 kms to go.

The sprinters teams upped the pace again for the final sprint, this time Lotto Soudal managed a perfect lead out for Ewan who went head to head with Groenewegen all the way to the line with a massive bike through that got him the stage win.

Tomorrow's stage starts going uphill with a vengance with the Col de Peyresourde and La Hourquette d’Ancizan in the final 70 kilometres, with a 20 km descent down into Bagnères-de-Bigorre after 220 kms. 

A day for a breakaway but also a test for the GC favortites who will have to fight to stay in contention on the two 1st category climbs nearer the end of stage.

No change in the CG, Alaphillppe is still in Yellow, but that could all change tomorrow as hit the Pyrenees and the climbing specialists take control.

Caleb Ewan said to the media after his stage win "When I started cycling at 10-years-old, I used to pretend that I was racing in the Tour de France, and winning it," he said.

"Winning this stage almost makes it worthwhile leaving Australia with my wife with our newborn baby daughter, Lee, back home!"

"My wife is so strong and I could never have done this without her. She's the one I really have to thank for realising my dream."

VIDEO: 2019 Tour de France Stage 11 Highlights

2019 Tour de France Stage 11 Top 10

1 Caleb Ewan (Aus) Lotto Soudal 3:51:26
2 Dylan Groenewegen (Ned) Team Jumbo-Visma
3 Elia Viviani (Ita) Deceuninck-QuickStep
4 Peter Sagan (Svk) Bora-Hansgrohe
5 Jens Debusschere (Bel) Katusha-Alpecin
6 Sonny Colbrelli (Ita) Bahrain-Merida
7 Jasper Philipsen (Bel) UAE Team Emirates
8 Cees Bol (Ned) Team Sunweb
9 Alexander Kristoff (Nor) UAE Team Emirates
10 Warren Barguil (Fra) Arkéa Samsic

2019 Tour de France GC after Stage 11

1 Julian Alaphilippe (Fra) Deceuninck-QuickStep 47:18:41
2 Geraint Thomas (GBr) Team Ineos 0:01:12
3 Egan Bernal (Col) Team Ineos 0:01:16
4 Steven Kruijswijk (Ned) Team Jumbo-Visma 0:01:27
5 Emanuel Buchmann (Ger) Bora-Hansgrohe 0:01:45
6 Enric Mas (Spa) Deceuninck-QuickStep 0:01:46
7 Adam Yates (GBr) Mitchelton-Scott 0:01:47
8 Nairo Quintana (Col) Movistar Team 0:02:04
9 Daniel Martin (Irl) UAE Team Emirates 0:02:09
10 Thibaut Pinot (Fra) Groupama-FDJ 0:02:33

 
Tag: tourdefrance
 
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