Stephen Farrand paints a vivid picture of post-stage life at the Tour de France for Rigoberto Uran. A surprise general contender for many, Uran was allowed a relatively quiet start to the Tour but interest in the Colombian has risen along with his general classification position. Amid the frenzy, Uran is steadfastly nonplussed.
Rigoberto Uran (Cannondale-Drapac) confirmed the prediction of Chris Froome that he is the Sky rider’s most dangerous rival for overall victory in the Tour de France, putting in another faultless and confident ride over the Col du Galibier to Serre Chevalier.
Uran was consistently able to respond to the attacks and accelerations by Romain Bardet (AG2R La Mondiale) and Froome on the Col du Galibier and then sprinted smartly to take second place on the stage and so sweep up the six-second-time bonus. With Fabio Aru (Astana) distanced on the Col du Galibier and losing 31 seconds at the finish, Uran did enough to move up from fourth to second place overall, 27 seconds behind Chris Froome.
Bardet is also at 27 seconds and seemed irritated by Uran sprinting for the time bonus after refusing to give his all on the descent, as the leading quartet gained time on Aru.
Uran was selected for anti-doping and rode straight into the protected area just past the finish line, managing to give the Colombian television and radio journalists the slip to be first in line for the anti-doping control. The Colombian media focused on grabbing Darwin Atapuma and Nairo Quintana but soon returned to the anti-doping area. When Uran emerged they submerged him with microphones and questions. With Quintana totally out of contention and finishing minutes off the pace yet again, Uran is the Colombian hero of this year’s Tour de France. Asking Uran a question was a matter of life or death. It seemed that whole nation wanted to hear his words.
As ever, Uran seemed amused by it all. Despite huge expectations for him to finish on the final podium in Paris and even topple Froome to become the first Colombian to ever win the Tour de France, Uran remains ‘tranquilo’.