This Tuesday, July 6, 2021, the 10th stage of the Tour de France took the peloton from Albertville to Valence. The roads of the Drôme are well known to Pierre Latour, still a member of the Vélo Sprint Romanais. But the most prominent regional of the stage is perhaps not the one we expected.
This Tuesday, July 6, 2021, it’s the excitement in the local Sprint Bike Romanais-Peageois. The arrival of the 10th stage of the Tour de France will be played a few kilometers away. In Valence. Every day, it is the same ritual for the supporters, to bring out the whole panoply to encourage and hope to see the regional of the stage win. Today, it’s Pierre Latour. His father, Claude, is in the starting blocks. “I called him this morning. It will surely be a sprint finish. He was informed that there was a strong southerly wind, so he should beware of the edges.“The weather is stormy. The rain, the wind, the conditions are not going to be ideal for the runners. But with the Latours, there is hope.
What would be good is if there is an escape and he is in it. Last time around, he tried 15 times to go in the breakaway. The 16th was not there when it was the right one.
Claude, father of Pierre Latour of the Total Direct Energie team
All behind the native of Drôme
Pierre Latour was born on October 12, 1993 in Romans-sur-Isère, in the Drôme department. Having turned professional in 2015, the cyclist is part of the TotalEnergies team. “The advantage is that he knows the roads really well in the last 80 kilometers of the course. Since he was a junior, every week we go there“, says Pierre’s dad.”There are a lot of false rising and falling dishes, he knows all of this by heart. Yes, it’s a small advantage but there are still customers“.
The time has come to stand by the side of the road. A large poster of Pierre is deployed. And Claude proudly wears the boy’s jersey, hoping that he will be able to say hello to him in passing. And then, there is a question of a fall. Claude tries to find out more. Little rise in stress? A suspicion certainly, especially after having confided to us a little earlier, that there was always a risk of falling.
No complaints, he avoided all the falls in the first week, which was not the case the other years. It was rather the opposite, he took them all …
Everything is going well for Pierre. And his father’s prognosis is being verified. The peloton took over the two breakaways of the day about thirty kilometers from the finish line. It smells of a group arrival. “I think he will work for Turgis who is the team sprinter with Boasson Hagen“.
Hugo Houle, the other regional of the stage
Two kilometers after the start of Albertville, two runners took to the skies. They are the Belgian Tosh van der Sande and the Canadian Hugo Houle. One of the two also knows the Drôme very well. The Tour team tells us that it is the Canadian. When he ran under the colors of AG2R-La Mondiale, between 2013 and 2017, Hugo Houle lived in Saint-Paul-Trois-Châteaux, then in Saint-Restitut in the south of the Drôme department.
Admittedly, he was finally taken over by the peloton, but will have been at the head of the race for more than 150 kilometers. The most prominent regional of the stage was therefore not the one everyone was thinking of.
Pierre Latour’s father told us so. It smacked of the finish in the sprint on this tenth 190.7km long stage. Claude remembers that in 2018, the turn arrived in Valence. And the son “had made room for the sprint. He had done in the 15 I believes “. On July 6, 2021, it was Mark Cavendish, the Briton from the Deceuninck team who won.
And Pierre Latour? He finished in 40th place in the stage classification. Better than the second regional of the stage, Hugo Houle, who points him to 123rd place. Tadej Pogacar (UAE) keeps the yellow jersey on the eve of the double ascent of Mont Ventoux. This July 7, 2021, the 11th stage of the Tour de France will take the runners from Sorgues (Vaucluse) to Malaucène, at the bottom of a 22-kilometer descent.