Photo gallery: 2017 Tour de France, Stage 5

A solitary Aru danced his way through a tunnel of sound as he approached the summit of La Planche des Belles Filles.

by Evan Hartig


Italian national champion Fabio Aru (Astana) took the summit finish at La Planche des Belles Filles on Stage 5 of the Tour de France Wednesday, attacking out of a select group of 15 on the upper slopes of the six-kilometer ascent.
Irishman Dan Martin (Quick-Step Floors) was second across the line, with defending champion Chris Froome (Team Sky) 20 seconds back from Aru in third, vaulting the three-time winner into yellow.

The day’s breakaway rolled early as per usual, within the first five kilometers of the race, consisting of eight riders: Jan Bakelants (Ag2r La Mondiale), Mickael Delage (FDJ), Edvald Boasson Hagen (Dimension Data), Dylan van Baarle (Cannonale-Drapac), Pierre-Luc Perichon (Fortuneo-Oscaro), Thomas Voeckler (Direct Energie), Philippe Gilbert (Quick-Step Floors) and Thomas De Gendt (Lotto Soudal).

On the lower slopes of La Planche des Belles Filles, Sky lieutenants Michal Kwiatkowski, Mikel Nieve, and Sergio Henao set a vicious pace that quickly reeled in the remainder of the breakaway, and with four kilometers remaining, the race was one for the GC men. The pace quickly created a select group.

At 2.5 kilometers out, Aru challenged the composed steadiness of the Sky train with a vicious solo attempt. Aru rose from the saddle and seemed to perpetually accelerate up the climb, even as the gradient rose over 20%. Arms aloft, he crossed the line with 16 seconds over Martin, who put in an impressive final dig to overcome Froome, four seconds back.