Jasper Philipsen (Alpecin-Deceuninck) celebrates on stage 4 of the 2022 Tour de France, not realising Wout van Aert (Jumbo-Visma) had already won.

Jasper Philipsen: ‘For five seconds I thought I had won’

After seven podiums across two Tours de France, Philipsen thought he'd finally got his win on stage 4. Alas, Van Aert had already taken it.

Don’t miss out on the latest CyclingTips updates.

Jump To Comments

Stage 4 was a day of vindication for one Belgian, and one to forget for another. Eight seconds after Wout van Aert turned his trio of second places into stage glory, Jasper Philipsen powered across the line at the head of the sprint for second with a celebration worthy of victory.

“For five seconds I thought I had won,” Philipsen said after the stage. “It will have made nice images, but I would not have wanted it that way.”

Set up by a clearly planned surge from Jumbo-Visma, Van Aert had gone on the attack on the last climb of the day, a one-kilometre dig just inside the last 12 kilometres. The yellow jersey had just a few bike lengths over the top, but with GC riders littering the climb and a peloton fraying behind, it was all a bit chaotic. Some degree of order was restored in the group, but Van Aert, alone and undistracted, stayed away.

“I didn’t know he was in the front and didn’t hear it on the radio,” said Philipsen. “Too bad, because I thought I was riding for the win. The sprint was good, but unfortunately it was not for the win. Did Kristoff also think he was riding for the win? I was the one who crossed the finish line first after Wout and was celebrating, so I’m now embarrassed.”

Laporte: “Mate, it’s Wout’s…”

The climb was clearly a perfect launchpad, but only the Ineos Grenadiers seemed to anticipate what Jumbo-Visma was planning and were ready to react. Even Tadej Pogačar was caught out as a couple of his GC rivals went up the road.

“We thought it was going to be a sprint,” Philipsen added to Wielerflits. “I didn’t expect someone to ride off alone. The disappointment is great now. I’ve made a fool of myself, but that’s how it is.”

Like the man who won the day, Philipsen has become rather too familiar with the podium, and like Van Aert, the fire in his belly will be roaring as the Tour de France continues.

Philipsen will surely be smarting for a good few days, but he’s in good company. And he can learn something from Van Aert: “another day is always coming”.

Editors' Picks