Nairo Quintana: "Bring the Polka jersey back to Paris”
Nairo Quintana took the best climber jersey of the Tour this evening in Tignes. Anthony Delaplace crossed the finish line with courage, but unfortunately out of time.
ON THE LINE…
“It’s a great emotion to have taken the best climber jersey, we have chosen not to play with the general classification in this Tour. I went in the breakaway in order to take points for the mountain classification. I did it for the Arkéa-Samsic team, for my Colombian and French supporters, and all the people who support my team. This jersey has a great impact in my country but also in France, I know that. I went to get it for all these people, and I will defend it tooth and nail. It wasn’t easy, this jersey is not obtained by snapping your fingers, it was a great fight at the beginning of the stage between my opponents and me. It is an important distinctive jersey for our partners. I will continue to go forward, fight with positive energy to bring it back to Paris, on the Champs-Élysées, while keeping the team’s objective which is also to win a stage. “
It was a great day of cycling with fantastic conditions. The objective was for Nairo to get the jersey today, which wasn’t easy, and now to take it back to Paris. He was very active on the côte de Domancy, then in Les Saisies and took the lead in the Col des Près and Cormet de Roselend. He got all the polka dots! That was the objective. Our second objective is to win a stage with Nairo and Nacer who had a terrible day in the cold. We have another opportunity to win a stage the day after tomorrow with Nacer. We remain focused on our initial objectives with others to come. Warren had a difficult day yesterday and it’s great to see him in the breakaway and helping out in the Saisies in Nairo. Cycling is like that of the Russian mountains. He is getting better, but he can get even better. It’s good for the next two weeks. The disappointment of the day is Anthony. He doesn’t deserve to leave the Tour de France like that. He had a bad day, he was stunned by the cold, and I congratulate him because he wanted to finish, but he finished out of time. But out of respect for the race, he still crossed the line. That’s just like “Antho”…”