Cycling’s most illustrious race, the Tour de France, was completed on the renowned Champs-Elysees, with Danish rider Jonas Vingegaard winning for a second consecutive year.
Before the last, primarily ceremonial stage of the 110th edition of the Tour on Sunday, Vingegaard knew the title was basically his again. He had built up a sizable advantage over his major challenger Tadej Pogacar, the winner in 2020 and 2021.
On the journey to Paris, Vingegaard sipped champagne with his Jumbo-Visma teammates as they lined up and posed for pictures.
It took three weeks to complete the 3,405 km (2,116 mi) race, which had eight mountain stages spread out over five mountain ranges. Over the course of two Alps stages, Vingegaard took command of the race.
The Yellow King! 💛
— Tour de France™ (@LeTour) July 23, 2023
Little had separated the two competitors until Vingegaard won a time trial on Tuesday, finishing one minute, 38 seconds ahead of Pogacar. The following day, he repeated the feat by winning the race’s most difficult mountain stage, finishing nearly six minutes ahead of his worn-out rival.
“I’m gone, I’m dead,” Pogacar declared.
The Slovenian rider answered by taking the penultimate stage on Saturday, but Vingegaard still held a commanding advantage of seven minutes, 29 seconds heading into the final stage, which is largely ceremonial and is won by the sprinters at the finish.
Vingegaard cautioned on Saturday, “We have to be careful not to do anything silly, but certainly, it’s great to capture my second victory in the Tour de France.
— Margrethe Vestager (@vestager) July 23, 2023
Cycling competitor Jordi Meeus from Belgium took first place in the decisive stage ahead of competitors Jasper Philipsen, Dylan Groenewegen, and Mads Pedersen in a photo finish.
My first Tour, I said. It has been an extremely pleasant experience thus far, and winning today is an amazing feeling,” Meeus remarked.