• Australian and team Trek-Segafredo rider Richie Porte. (Velo)Source: Velo
Trek-Segafredo's Richie Porte will be looking to add another strong climbing performance to his Tour de France campaign in Stage 17, in what looms as the queen stage of this year's race.
By
SBS Cycling Central

16 Sep 2020 - 7:26 AM 

Finishing Stage 16 still in sixth place and firmly in the hunt for the yellow jersey two minutes and thirteen seconds behind leader Primož Roglič, Porte was relieved to bounce back after the second rest day and praised the strong showing from the rest of his team.

"It’s always tricky the day after the rest day to see how the legs respond," Porte said. " I think as a team we did a super job today; we were always up in the front. The big guys, Mads, Eddie, and Jasper, were absolutely brilliant in fighting for position."

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"It was a day that really could have been super hard or gone the way it did. In the final you saw it wasn’t super easy, but I felt pretty good."

After getting through the first of the week's climbs in the Villard-de-Lans relatively easily, Porte will need to work extremely hard to overcome the mountains that await him in Stage 17, set to be vital for the GC hopefuls as the Paris conclusion of the Tour draws nearer. 

This year's queen stage, referring to the most testing stage of the race with the highest altitude point, the riders will ascend familiar foe the Col de La Madeleine, but face a new challenge as it is combined with the Col de La Loze, with a recently laid path taking the peloton a dizzying 2,304 metres to the summit and back down again.

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Brutally steep, inconsistent and sure to be a gruelling day out in the sun, the stage will surely separate contenders from pretenders and Porte is prepared to attack and be in the leading group at the finish.

"Tomorrow is really one of the most crucial stages," Porte said. "So I hope to have good legs."

"I’m motivated and looking forward to it."

The 2020 Tour de France continues with the brutal 170km stage from Grenoble to Méribel (Col de La Loze) - the highest point of this year's Tour is on the menu. Stage 17 begins via SBS On Demand and the SBS ŠKODA Tour Tracker from 8:05pm (AEST) on Wednesday, with the television broadcast set to start at 9:35pm on SBS.