Photo gallery: The Tour’s GC battle roars to life on the first mountain stage

by Matt de Neef

There was an air of excitement and anticipation ahead of the 2019 Tour’s first summit finish and stage 6 to La Planches des Belles Filles certainly delivered. On a day that finished with a brutally steep ramp — part of it unsealed — we had a group of plucky breakaway riders battling for stage honours (and one of them chasing the yellow jersey), we had the erstwhile leader throwing down a challenge to the GC contenders, and we had the first signs of how those GC contenders are faring.

Geraint Thomas defied expectations, Romain Bardet didn’t live up to his, and Movistar showed a promising willingness to go on the attack early. There’s still a long way to Paris, clearly, but stage 6 gave us an early indication of what we can expect in the weeks ahead. We hope you enjoy the terrific photos of stage 6 below, courtesy of Kristof Ramon, the Grubers and Cor Vos.

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