Kruijswijk: 'Could not try to limit more than damage'

Steven Kruijswijk acknowledged that there was not much more to it in the fifteenth stage of the Tour de France on Sunday than trying to limit the damage. The leader of Jumbo-Visma was unable to compete on the final climb with competitors Thibaut Pinot and Egan Bernal, who did good business in the general classification.


Steven Kruijswijk acknowledged that there was not much more to it in the fifteenth stage of the Tour de France on Sunday than trying to limit the damage. The leader of Jumbo-Visma was unable to compete on the final climb with competitors Thibaut Pinot and Egan Bernal, who did good business in the general classification.

Kruijswijk, just like Team INEOS leader Geraint Thomas and others, had to release when Pinot accelerated. The Frenchman took a total of 55 seconds on the Dutchman and the Brit, who crossed the finish line together on the Prat d'Albis.

"I had to pick up myself and got bitten in the final phase by Thomas's wheel, which was still accelerating. It was to drive down to the line and try to keep the damage limited," Kruijswijk said in an initial reaction at the NOS .

The 32-year-old from Brabant, who lost half a minute at Bernal, is still third in the general classification despite his loss of time. Pinot is three seconds from Kruijswijk and Bernal has fifteen seconds to make up for the Dutchman.

"I was not bad", Kruijswijk emphasized. "You have to get through every day and one time you are better than the other. It is what it is. Pinot was no stopping and Bernal was fine too. We did what we could."

Julian Alaphilippe was able to join Pinot and Bernal on the final climb in the first instance, but the French jumper was later released. He finished 27 seconds from Kruijswijk and Thomas and is less strong at the top of the general classification.

ref: nunl