Following his win at the Tour of California back in May, Egan Bernal’s race programme took a turn in an unexpected direction.
That ride set Egan up for second overall and his first WorldTour podium, but he was caught up in an unfortunate crash on the final day. Left with nowhere to go after a crash in front of him, he suffered clavicular and scapular fractures, ruling him out for nearly a month of racing.
It all came down to the decisive sixth stage, where a faultless team performance and another titanic turn from Tao Geoghegan Hart set Egan up to attack 10 kilometres from home. What was left of the peloton never saw him again. He won by a huge one minute and 28 seconds ahead of nearest rival Adam Yates, roaring back into a race lead he wouldn’t relinquish.
Despite riding a true support role and suffering a tough crash on the cobbled stage nine - which saw him lose 16 minutes - Bernal still finished 15th overall in his maiden Grand Tour.
What a year.