The Australian finished in the same group as the overall contenders to re-establish himself in the race for the yellow jersey, jumping up the standings to sit 13th overall at the end of a grueling first stage in the Pyrenees.
"It's not too bad," Porte said of the finish. "I didn't have the best of legs but obviously now in the GC, I've got a little bit of breathing space so it's nice to at least do something."
Porte dropped off the pace when Tadej Pogačar (UAE Team Emirates) launched his initial attack with 14 kilometres remaining in the race, but was able to rally to return to the main group of contenders. He immediately went past the group upon returning, combining forces with Mikel Landa (Bahrain McLaren).
The pair didn't gain too much ground before being reabsorbed into the main bunch of favourites.
Porte's teammate Toms Skujiņš had a stellar day, finishing second behind stage winner Nans Peters (AG2R La Mondiale) and the Aussie was delighted for him.
"It's great to see" Porte said. "He's one of the guys that really gets in and helps all the time."
Porte also reflected on the tough climbs in the stage that caused him to struggle to remain with the leaders.
"We didn't go so hard on the first climb, but it's a hard day no matter how hard you ride."
The Tour de France continues in the Pyrenees tomorrow, with another mountainous stage from Pau to Laurens set to test the peloton with steep climbs on the agenda. Watch the action from 8.05pm AEST on the SBS ŠKODA Tour Tracker and from 8.30pm on SBS HD and SBS On Demand.