Girmay sprints to Tour stage win but day overshadowed by Drege’s death in Austria

Biniam Girmay of the Intermarche Wanty team took his second stage win in the Tour de France, in Charles de Gaulle’s home village of Colombey-les-Deux-Églises, after a day-long breakaway by Jonas Abrahamsen, riding for Uno-X Mobil, was reeled in with 14km left to race.

On the approach to the long straight ramp to the finish line, overlooked by the giant Cross of Lorraine, symbol of Free France, the jostling for position was intense. But as the road climbed into the final 300 metres, Girmay held off rival sprinter Jasper Philipsen, of Alpecin Deceuninck, to claim the win.

A view of the sprinters powering up the final ramp to the line. Photograph: Tim de Waele/Getty Images

But events at the Tour were overshadowed by the death of 25-year-old Norwegian Andre Drege, who crashed on the descent of the Grossglockner pass, during stage four of the Tour of Austria.

Although the stage continued, and was won by Filippo Ganna of Ineos Grenadiers, podium protocols were cancelled and it was unclear if Sunday’s final fifth stage would take place.

Drege, winner of seven races this year, was riding for Team Coop-Repsol, but was expected to move up to World Tour level with the Jayco-AlUla team in 2025.

His fate mirrors that of Gino Mäder, who was killed on a fast descent during last year’s Tour of Switzerland, prompting the inclusion of greater safety measures within the sport.

The Guardian