A former winner of the occasion mentioned the day may very well be vital in deciding the race’s final result.
Thomas shaved off 27 seconds, pulling away from the much less skilled Alaphilippe with round 1.5 kilometers (zero.93 miles) remaining within the 185-kilometer (115-mile) part between Limoux to Foix Prat d’Albis. He now trails Alaphilippe by one minute, 35 seconds.
“Geraint will now begin to suppose he can win this race once more,” mentioned 2012 champion Bradley Wiggins, analyzing the race for British Eurosport.
Wiggins mentioned Alaphilippe’s failure to tempo himself price him within the stage and will damage his general possibilities as he bids to change into the primary Frenchman to win biking’s most well-known race since Bernard Hinault in 1985.
“That is what’s going to lose him the Tour de France, that incapacity to gauge his effort over the three weeks,” mentioned Wiggins. “He is full-on on a regular basis. He is a puncher, he rides on morale, he rides on the gang supporting him.
Wiggins urged Alaphilippe ought to “have simply stayed with Geraint the entire method up the climb,” including that the Welsh bicycle owner “is definitely the one man he ought to maintain his eye on in the intervening time.
“If he wins this Tour, he’ll must get lots smarter.”
‘Hardest but to return’
Alaphilippe mentioned he was merely pleased to maintain the chief’s yellow jersey for one more day.
“We knew it might be a tough day,” he was quoted as saying on the Tour’s web site. “I paid for my efforts within the finale. I anticipated to lose a little bit of time right this moment.
“I am delighted that I am nonetheless within the yellow jersey. I gave my greatest to battle and retain the lead. The dream goes on. I used to be by no means a favourite and the toughest is but to return.”
Thomas mentioned his legs “are responding slightly bit higher,” however he admitted he is nonetheless excited about final yr’s race, which produced a fourth straight winner from the UK.
In Saturday’s grueling 14th stage between Tarbes and Tourmalet, Thomas misplaced 30 seconds on Alaphilippe.
“It is simply such a psychological sport,” the Welshman instructed reporters. “Everybody is sweet. Everyone seems to be drained, and also you type of simply want to dam that out.
“It is simply simple to consider final yr and consider all the nice occasions … however I used to be struggling at occasions then as effectively, so I simply must chunk the bullet and dig in.”
Maybe the largest winner of the final two levels was one other Frenchman, Thibaut Pinot.
He shone Saturday to shut inside three minutes, 12 seconds of Alaphilippe. After breaking away to complete second Sunday behind Britain’s Simon Yates, Pinot now sits fourth, just one minute, 50 seconds behind the chief.
Yates completed forward of Pinot by 33 seconds on Sunday. It was his second victory in lower than every week after triumphing in stage 12.
The riders have a much-needed break day Monday earlier than a respite from the mountains: A 177-kilometer (110-mile) stretch that begins and ends in Nimes.