Leeds' Tom Pidcock wins Tour de France stage on Alpe D'Huez

Leeds' Tom Pidcock is celebrating one of cycling's greatest achievements after winning a stage in his first Tour de France.
Tom Pidcock approaches the finish line on Alpe D'Huez. Picture by Vincent Kalut/PN/Cor Vos/SWpix.com.Tom Pidcock approaches the finish line on Alpe D'Huez. Picture by Vincent Kalut/PN/Cor Vos/SWpix.com.
Tom Pidcock approaches the finish line on Alpe D'Huez. Picture by Vincent Kalut/PN/Cor Vos/SWpix.com.

The 22-year-old was first across the line at the summit on Alpe D'Huez, arguably the Tour's most famous climb.

The Ineos Grenadiers rider is the reigning men's mountain biking Olympic champion and cyclo-cross world champion, but today’s (Thursday's) victory is the greatest achievement of his career so far.

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He won by 48 seconds from Louis Meintjes, becoming the youngest rider to win on Alpe D'Huez and only the second Briton after Geraint Thomas.

Joy for Tom Pidcock as he makes history on Alpe D'Huez. Picture by Vincent Kalut/PN/Cor Vos/SWpix.com.Joy for Tom Pidcock as he makes history on Alpe D'Huez. Picture by Vincent Kalut/PN/Cor Vos/SWpix.com.
Joy for Tom Pidcock as he makes history on Alpe D'Huez. Picture by Vincent Kalut/PN/Cor Vos/SWpix.com.

Four-time Tour winner Chris Froome came in third on the stage as Thomas, one of Pidcock's teammates, moved up to third in the general classification.

Froome joined Pidcock in an attack on the Galibier climb at the start of the 165km stage from Briancon to join what became a nine-man break,

Pidcock made the first attack on the famous Alp, around 10km from the summit and had time to celebrate as he crossed the line.

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An emotional Pidcock - who reached 100 kilometres an hour on a descent earlier in the stage - said he realised he would win with 800 metres to go.

"Not bad that, is it," Pidcock said in his post-race interview.

"I guess it has made my Tour de France. Even if nothing else happens and I get dropped every day now I don't care - a stage win in my first Tour.”

He added: "That was certainly one of my best experiences in cycling.

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"It's unreal when you're literally slaloming through people's flags, fists and God knows what else.

"You can't experience that anywhere else other than the Alpe d'Huez in the Tour de France."

Asked about riding over to the break with Froome, he added: "It was pretty nice getting across there with him.

"We worked well together, he's a legend and I just beat him up the Alpe d'Huez.

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"Maybe he's not as fast as he once was, but he's still good, isn't he?"

Otley's Lizzie Deignan, a former world champion, was part of the ITV 4 commentary team and hailed Pidcock as "one of the most skilful riders in the peloton".

She said: "The world is his oyster, he has no limitations at the moment."