On Saturday, Quebecers Guillaume Boivin and Hugo Houle (Israel – Premier Tech) saw their New Zealand teammate Corbin Strong take ninth place in the eighth stage of the Tour de France. This is also the first top 10 of Strong’s career in a Grand Tour.

About forty riders fought for victory in the final sprint where Dane Mads Pedersen (Lidl – Trek) won ahead of Belgian Jasper Philipsen (Alpecin-Decenunick) who was trying to win a fourth stage since the start of the Tour.

“The final was very difficult with several climbs, but it was perfect for Corbin. Unfortunately, I lost him a bit at the very end, but he was very strong in the last 500 meters to get back into the top 10. You can see that we have the legs to fight for a victory in this kind of race. stage,” commented Guillaume Boivin.

Boivin finished 46th, just behind the leading group 22 seconds behind the winner. For his part, Houle took 102nd place of the day (4 minutes 49 seconds).

The provisional general classification has not changed with the presence of the yellow jersey Jonas Vingegaard (Jumbo-Visma) and his closest pursuer, the Slovenian Tadej Pogacar (UAE Emirates) in the leading group. The Dane is still 25 seconds ahead of Pogacar.

What also caught the eye during this eighth stage was the abandonment of Briton Mark Cavendish (Astana Qazaqstan), second Friday, after a heavy fall. The one who won 34 stages in the Tour de France during his career had announced that it would be his last participation in the Grande Boucle.

“Nobody wanted to see that. We never wish that on anyone, but it’s particularly sad because it’s his last Tour and we could see that he still had the aggressiveness for the competition. I wish him a speedy recovery,” Boivin added.

The ninth stage of the Tour will take place on Sunday in the mountains, in particular with the ascent of the Puy de Dôme. Cyclists will then enjoy a first day off on Monday.