Monster Stage and Champions

Monster ride: Ben O'Connor on to winning the monster stage Cluses- Tignes

"It was always the dream. Just to be here is the first dream. This is testament to everyone who's put faith in me over the years, my fiancee, my parents, my best mates back in Australia. It's been a wild ride, and it's mind-blowing. I mean, its' what you dream of. It's so much joy. I've managed to control myself now. I'm just loving every single moment. I'm so happy, Citroen have had so much faith in me, and it's clear how much happiness has brought the team, so it's special.

"I actually wasn't meant to be in the break I was just waiting, I didn't really know what to do, if I should play cool. I heard it was a great opportunity, to gain time on the GC, and I knew I could always win at the end. I was blowing pretty hard, but it was a mad stage, conditions were atrocious. I was concerned that Tadej was going to explode from behind and chase me down, but I knew I could win the stage. I had faith the whole time, and it was about making sure I didn't panic. As soon as you think, 'I'm going to win a stage on the Tour de France', all sorts of things happen to your mind."

-Ben O'Connor. Stage 9 winner and 2nd on GC.

Ben O'Connor's fanclub: Benoit Cosnefroy and Aurelien Paret Peintre

"The stage was very tough from the start with multiple attacks at the front of the peloton like every day in order to break away. It took a lot of effort to get the hang of it, and then I did the sprints to get some points in the top climber standings. I was also playing the stage, but it was difficult because there were many of us. I continue to move forward day by day, and the goal is always to win a stage in this 2021 Tour de France for the team."

-Nairo Quintana. KoMs leader

"We took the front from the start and rode all the way towards the first climb. The guys were really awesome today. At the end, going head-to-head with Quintana took its toll. The accumulated fatigue from yesterday's big effort and the cold weather today really started to impact me. I tried to play it the best way I could but following Quintana killed me and I blew up. The weather really affected me, and I could barely hold the handlebars on the descent. I was descending like a feather. 

"However, we are still very much in the game (for the KOM). It would have been nice to go for the stage win today but that wasn't in the cards. Still, the fact that I was able to attack and be in the break after riding so hard yesterday gives me a lot of confidence. Now, I have two days to recover and then I'll be good for the next stage."

-Michael Woods. 2nd in the KOMs Classification.

Steady does it: Rigoberto Uran moves up to 3rd overall

Outside the time limit: Anthony Delaplace was forced to leave the Tour. Also to miss out: Arnaud Demare, Bryan Coquard, Jacopo Guarnieri, Loic Vliegen, Stefan De Bod and Nic Dlamini, the first black South African to ride the Tour, was the last man to cross the line after crashing earlier in the day. He crossed the line 1hr 24mins after O'Connor. Honourable mention goes to...

Translation: South African Tour debutant Nic Dlamini had known for a long time that he would not finish within the time limit today. Yet he refused to give up. Almost an hour out of time, he still crosses the line.

Stage 9 Results