Team Jumbo-Visma finishes second at the 2020 Tour de France
Primož Roglič controlled the yellow jersey for 11 days but came just short of fellow Slovenian Tadej Pogačar at the end.
Week 1: From slippery crashes to three stage wins
After a nearly two-month delay due to the coronavirus, the 2020 Tour de France began on August 29th in slick and rainy conditions. Expectations for Team Jumbo-Visma were high, with several riders eyeing a Tour victory, including team favorite Primož Roglič as well as Tom Dumoulin.
On the first day, a number of high-profile riders were involved in rain-related crashes around Nice in southern France. From Team Jumbo-Visma this included Wout van Aert, Amund Jansen, and George Bennett. Fortunately, none of the crashes were serious and the team finished the stage in the front half of the competition.
The next two stages went much the same way, with the team staying near the front but this time avoiding the dangerous last-minute sprints.
Stage 4 was the first breakthrough for the team, as Primož won the mountainous stage from Sisteron to Orcières-Merlette, placing him 3rd overall. The win was a huge team effort, as they fought back several charges from competing riders in the mountainous terrain.
At this point, Primož was just 7 seconds behind the leader, Frenchman Julian Alaphilippe.
The team’s strong effort continued the next three days, with Wout winning stages 5 and 7 thanks to his excellent placement and attack timing in the final sprints.
Teammate Tom Dumoulin had this to say after Wout’s second impressive win in Stage 7: “Wout rode to protect Primoz all day and to keep him out of danger. He also took a lot of wind. It is unbelievable that he can then still pull such a sprint. I have no words for that.”
Wout rode to protect Primoz all day and to keep him out of danger. He also took a lot of wind. It is unbelievable that he can then still pull such a sprint. I have no words for that.
Week 2: Seizing the yellow jersey and battling for control
Stage 8 was another solid performance for the team as Team Jumbo-Visma led the peloton on the first of a multi-day trip through the Pyrenees. Primož held onto second place overall, as the team began eyeing an opportunity to attack.
Stage 9 became that opportunity. Primož nearly won the stage, finishing second only to fellow Slovenian Tadej Pogačar. Primož seized the yellow jersey from Englishman Adam Yates and claimed an impressive 21-second lead overall.
“I feel very happy," he said. "Everyone dreams of having it in their hands. It also means appreciation to the whole team. We must continue to do our best. Hopefully I still have the jersey around my shoulders in Paris.”
I feel very happy. Everyone dreams of having it in their hands. It also means appreciation to the whole team. We must continue to do our best. Hopefully I still have the jersey around my shoulders in Paris.
Following a much needed rest day, Team Jumbo-Visma were able to maintain their position in the belly of the peloton despite a number of crashes during Stage 10. Over the next two days, Primož held onto the yellow jersey thanks to the strong teamwork of his team to protect their position.
Stage 13 was the breakthrough that really separated Team Jumbo-Visma from the rest. The team held an aggressive position, opening the door for Primož to attack in the final two kilometres. His strong finish gave him a 44-second lead over Pogačar and nearly one minute over Egan Bernal.
Stages 14 and 15 saw impressive efforts from Pogačar to challenge the leaders. Pogačar was able to take Stage 15, but Primož finished the final sprint right behind him, nearly taking the stage himself.
Afterwards, Primož was thankful for his teammates: “I would have liked to win to reward the guys for their work, but that didn't work out, unfortunately. I compliment my teammates. They were very, very strong. Impressive even.”
Teammate Sepp Kuss added, “We rode an almost perfect stage. It seemed like everyone was outperforming themselves."
I would have liked to win to reward the guys for their work, but that didn't work out, unfortunately. I compliment my teammates. They were very, very strong. Impressive even.
Week 3: Extending the lead and hanging on
Over the next two stages, Team Jumbo-Visma expertly held Primož’s lead, supported by Wout’s strong third-place finish in Stage 18. Heading into Stage 20, Primož still had a 57-second lead over the second-place Pogačar.
After an uneventful Stage 16, Primož extended his lead on the 17th racing day by finishing second in the stage. His attack on Col de la Loze was particularly impressive considering his leading position.
More importantly, he finished ahead of Pogačar by 17 seconds, extending his overall lead to 57 seconds.
But in Stage 20, for the first time in the 11 stages Team Jumbo-Visma had control of the yellow jersey, the day did not go as planned. Pogačar mounted a comeback for the ages. In the mountainous time trial to La Planche des Belles Filles, he won with a blistering time of 55’ 55”, over a minute faster than the closest competitors, including Tom Dumoulin (2nd) and Wout van Aert (4th) of Team Jumbo-Visma. Primož was unable to close the gap enough, finishing the stage in 5th, two minutes behind Pogačar (and nearly a minute behind him overall).
With the final Stage 21 being traditionally a sprint stage with little overall movement, there was little for Primož to do but congratulate Pogačar on a fantastic comeback. The 21-year-old Pogačar impressed the world with his performance—digging deep into his reserves at the exact time he needed it. Congratulations to him and to his team UAE Team Emirates for a fantastic Tour.
A monumental finish
On Sunday, Team Jumbo-Visma rode into Paris as winners. To finish second at the Tour de France is a monumental achievement—for the riders, their supporting staff, their fans, and for all of us at Visma. It is the result of years of hard work: from the tireless dedication of the teammates, to the expertise development of the Team Jumbo-Visma organisation, to the daily efforts of the staff working behind the scenes. This was even more impressive considering the special corona circumstances everyone has had to deal with.
Congratulations to Primož for a wonderful Tour, and to the rest of the team whose efforts were pivotal, day in and day out, to securing the second-place finish.
See what Visma’s CEO, Merete Hverven, had to say to the team:
One of the reasons we are a sponsor of Team Jumbo-Visma is our shared values. We believe that commitment, passion, and hard work lead to great things when we work together. For the last three weeks, these values have been mightily on display—we are so proud to be part of such a world-class team.
As we say, every victory takes a lot of steps. So does developing excellent cloud software. #winningtogether #samenwinnen #bettertogether