ProTeam Maxim Van Gils impresses with 2nd place on Grand Colombier

Tour debutant shows climbing legs on stage 13 of the Tour.
Race 14 July 2023

Tour debutant Maxim Van Gils has conquered a second place atop the Grand Colombier today. The young Belgian was part of an early breakaway which detached itself from the peloton after a furious start. On the brutal 17 kilometres long climb to the finish, only two riders could stay ahead of the GC riders. Kwiatkowski soloed to the stage win, Van Gils finished at 47” from the Polish rider and could just hold off Pogaçar and Vingegaard.

“When I eventually got away in that sizeable front group, I tried to save as much energy as possible for the ascent of the Grand Colombier. Once on the climb, it was an ‘all out’ effort until the top. Soon, only the strong climbers remained at the front and when Kwiatkowski accelerated, I was forced to ride my own pace. When I heard that the GC guys were nearing, I realised it would be a difficult task. Luckily I had some energy left and could hold on to second place.”

With a crash on stage two, Van Gils did not get off to a great start of the Tour. Now, the youngster impresses. “That crash was a pity but today and yesterday I proved that I’m riding a solid first Tour. Is this stage a missed opportunity? Maybe but I need to be honest that one guy was better today. But with these legs there might be some more chances because I really love the Alps”, concludes Maxim Van Gils.

For Lotto Dstny, it was a day of mixed feelings as Caleb Ewan was forced to abandon the Tour. After struggling with fatigue for several days, the Australian fought hard but eventually had to give up during stage thirteen of the Tour. “Leaving the Tour is a real shame. I want to express my gratitude to the team for their big support and I hope they can still show some nice things in the stages to come”, concludes Caleb Ewan.

Images: Photo News.

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