Julian Alaphilippe Takes Tour de France Lead After Stage 3
- Julian Alaphilippe took the lead in the Tour de France after winning Stage 3 by 26 seconds over the chase group.
- Alaphilippe, who earned the climber’s polka dot jersey last year, made a powerful solo breakaway with 15K to go and held a significant gap to the finish.
- The Frenchman now takes the yellow jersey from underdog Mike Teunissen, who kept it for two days.
- A powerful solo breakaway paid off for Julian Alaphilippe as the Frenchman won both Stage 3 and took the overall lead at the 2019 Tour de France on Monday.
He now wears the race leader’s yellow jersey after it spent two days on the back of Mike Teunissen, who took a surprise win on Stage 1 and managed to hold his lead after his Jumbo–Visma team rode a commanding time trial to win Stage 2.
But Teunissen fell to 72nd in the overall rankings after an exciting stage with three categorised climbs that brought the race from Belgium into France. The 26-year-old Dutchman rode well but was dropped on the final climb of the day.
Meanwhile Alaphilippe, who won the climber’s polka dot jersey in the 2018 Tour, attacked on the penultimate climb with 15K to go and then extended his lead to more than 40 seconds over the peloton. He lost some time on the final climb but gained enough back on the technical descent to end the stage well ahead of the chase group, taking the uphill sprint to the finish unopposed.
Despite a desperate effort from the pack to reel him in, the 27-year-old Deceuninck–1Quick Step rider won France its first Tour victory this year. And thanks to a 15-second time bonus, he also moved up to first in the General Classification.
Michael Matthews crossed the line 26 seconds later to place second, with Jasper Stuyven quickly took third. Finishing within one second of Matthews was a group that also included Greg Van Avermaet, in fourth, and Peter Sagan, in fifth.
As for the General Classification, Teunissen’s teammate Wout Van Aert held on to second place, sitting 20 seconds behind Alaphilippe. Steven Kruijswijk, another Jumbo–Visma rider, remains in third at 25 seconds behind.
Van Aert also kept his white jersey in the Best Young Rider competition. Sagan is winning the Points Classification by 17 points over Matthews and could be on his way to securing a record-setting seventh green jersey. Tim Wellens took polka dots from fellow Belgian Van Avermaet.