The Australian attacked from a group of GC contenders and rode Nairo Quintana (Movistar) and several other potential Tour de France riders off his wheel. Although the stage win escaped him, Porte is in a strong position to win his first stage race of 2018 and take a morale-boosting victory with the Tour de France just weeks away.
Two key stages remain in the Tour de Suisse, however, and after last year’s finale at the Critérium du Dauphiné in which he lost the lead in dramatic fashion, Porte is not taking any chances or writing off any of his rivals.
“It’s nice to take a little bit more time. Guys like Kelderman and Oomen are good time triallists, so it’s good to put a bit more time into them,” Porte said in his post-stage press conference.
Stage 7 sees the race tackle its second and final summit finish at Arosa, the location where Jan Ullrich cracked and lost almost two minutes in 2005, where Michael Albasini broke away to win in 2012, and where in 2002 Francesco Secchiari led home a Saeco-Valli&Valli one-two with Salvatore Commesso taking second.
Friday will be the 12th time that the climb will feature as a stage finish in Suisse, with the first dating back to 1946. Porte is well aware of the dangers that lie ahead, and that this race is far from over.
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