Cycling: Downhill master Pantano wins Tour stage 15, Froome leads

Sun Jul 17, 2016 12:33pm EDT
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By Julien Pretot

CULOZ, France (Reuters) - Colombian Jarlinson Pantano showed he is a master of the descent as he claimed his maiden Tour de France win in Sunday's 15th stage, while overall leader Chris Froome enjoyed a relatively quiet day in the saddle.

Pantano outsprinted breakaway companion Rafal Majka (Tinkoff) of Poland at the end of a 160-km trek in the Jura mountains to give his IAM Cycling team, who will be folding at the end of the season, a first victory on the Tour.

"I dreamt of this all my life, I'm so happy," said Pantano.

"Majka had won several Tour stages (three) and I was wary of him in the finale but I had good sensations. I knew that if I was catching him in the descent I'd have a good chance to win."

Briton Froome retained the overall lead after his Team Sky easily controlled feeble attacks from top-10 riders Fabio Aru, Alejandro Valverde and Romain Bardet.

Frenchman Bardet's attack, however, hurt American Tejay van Garderen, who lost 1:28 to the leading riders and slipped from sixth to eighth overall as his hopes of a podium finish in Paris took a serious knock.

Froome leads Dutchman Bauke Mollema (Trek-Segafredo) by 1:47 and third-placed Briton Adam Yates (Orica-Bike Exchange) by 2:45.

A 30-man group broke away on the first of the six ascents of the day, up to the Col du Berthiand.   Continued...

IAM team rider Jarlinson Pantano of Colombia wins on the finish line ahead of Tinkoff rider Rafal Majka of Poland.  REUTERS/Jean-Paul Pelissier