Will Clarke was the surprise winner of the Champs-Élysées stage of the virtual Tour de France, which Team NTT dominated, winning all five classifications.
A fantastic final sprint in Paris was opened up by (B&B Hotels – Vital Concept P/B K&M), who had chased down two of his fellow countrymen from FDJ, before NTT’s Edvald Boasson Hagen took over.
Without a power-up to use, the Norwegian was soon caught by team-mate Ryan Gibbons, but it was Clarke who powered through to cross the line first.
Ineos’ Filippo Ganna finished second, while the yellow jersey of Gibbons came third.
How it happened
Emils Liepins (Trek-Segafredo) and Jimmy Janssens (Alpecin-Fenix) took the early intermediate sprints, with NTT just monitoring proceedings at the front of the group having already sewn up both the overall and points classification, Ryan Gibbons wearing the yellow jersey for the South African squad.
The bunch was still all together heading into the final 15km, having averaged nearly 50km/h over the first half-hour of racing.
Gijs Van Hoecke (CCC) went long for the next intermediate sprint, opting for a no jersey set-up at home on his turbo.
Bruno Armirail (FDJ) briefly hit out on the penultimate lap, Ineos’ Filippo Ganna bringing him back in before the bell for the final jaunt around the Champs-Élysées.
Edvald Boasson Hagen (NTT) was churning out 450w on the final lap as the front group rounded the Arc de Triomphe for the final time.
Janssens won the final intermediate sprint as riders took quick swigs from their bottles in preparation for the finish.
FDJ’s Benjamin Thomas went long just before the flamme rouge, his team-mate Armirail behind and initially looking like he was going to block the bunch before riding onto Thomas’ wheel, the pair beginning to gap the peloton.
Bryan Coquard (B&B Hotels – Vital Concept P/B K&M) then came past the FDJ pair as the bunch sprint ensued, Edvald Boasson Hagen on his wheel and then starting to go clear.
But the Norwegian didn’t have a power-up as his team-mate Ryan Gibbons came soaring past. Team NTT wouldn’t have it all their way, though, as Trek-Segafredo’s Will Clarke came past to take the victory for the American team.
Virtual Tour de France, stage six: Champs-Élysées (42.8km)
1. Will Clarke (Aus) Trek-Segafredo, in 51-44
2. Filippo Ganna (Ineos), all at same time
3. Ryan Gibbons (RSA)
4. R Tiller (Nor) NTT
5. Matteo Dal-Cin (Can) Rally
6. M Walscheid (Ger) NTT
7. Simon Clarke (Aus) EF Pro Cycling
8. N Zukowsky (Can) Rally
9. Edvald Boasson Hagen (Nor) NTT, all at same time
10. Gijs Van Hoecke (Bel) CCC, at one second
Final general classification
1. NTT (RSA) – 500 points
2. Rally (USA) – 267 pts
3. Trek-Segafredo (USA) – 232 pts
4. EF Pro Cycling (USA) – 211 pts
5. Ineos (GBr) Ineos – 175 pts
6. Israel Start-Up Nation (Isr) – 161 pts
7. Mitchelton-Scott (Aus) – 139 pts
8. Alpecin-Fenix (Bel) – 138 pts
9. Groupama-FDJ (Fra) – 112 pts
10. Ag2r La Mondiale (Fra) – 105 pts
Final green jersey classification
1. NTT (RSA) – 293 pts
2. Alpecin – Fenix (Bel) – 143 pts
3. Mitchelton-Scott (Aus) – 140 pts
Final polka dot jersey classification
1. NTT (RSA) – 62 pts
2. EF Pro Cycling (USA) – 30 pts
3. Israel Start-Up Nation (Isr) – 28 pts
Final white jersey classification
1. NTT (RSA) – 51 pts
2. Ineos (GBr) – 47 pts
3. Groupama-FDJ (Fra) – 38 pts
Final team classification
1. NTT (RSA) – 923 pts
2. Rally (USA) – 398 pts
3. Trek-Segafredo (USA) – 360 pts