The Tour de France arrives on the Champs-Élysées for the most prestigious sprint stage in cycling. Sir Brad and Graham Willgoss were hoping for a bit of history from Mark Cavendish, but instead saw a thrilling finish in the heart of Paris and a third stage victory of the race for Wout van Aert.
“I don’t think anyone would deny Van Aert,” says Brad. “What he’s done this race is truly exceptional. He’s won a mountain stage over the Ventoux, he’s won a time trial and he’s won a Champs-Élysées sprint stage. The kid is on another level in terms of his all-round ability.”
And what about the resurgence of Mark Cavendish, who finished third on the day, the comeback story of the Tour?
“I was disappointed for Cav,” says Brad. “I know he’s an absolute winner and he’ll be gutted with today. That was the one he wanted to win the most. But let’s look at what he’s come away with: equalling the record of Eddy Merckx, four stage wins and he’s taken the Green Jersey 10 years after he last won it.
“It’s nice that he’s up there with Eddy Merckx… Sometimes things are best left as they are.”
It’s Tokyo next for Van Aert. Can he carry his form into the Olympics?
“Wout is the best rider in the world at the moment,” says Brad. “And the most versatile. The guy is phenomenal. I have huge respect for him. He’s now the favourite for the road race – he has to be. And I’d love to see him win it.”
Brad, too, will be aboard the next flight to Japan with Podcast Pete. Catch him there for our next episode.
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