Dutchman Fabio Jakobsen (Quick-Step) won the 2nd stage of the Tour de France in the sprint, Saturday July 2 in Nyborg, after crossing the large bridge which connects two of the islands of Denmark. The Belgian Wout Van Aert (Jumbo), second at the finish, put on the leader’s yellow jersey at the end of this stage slowed down by the headwind on the Great Belt strait.

“I’ve come from very, very far,” admitted Jakobsen (Quick-Step), who started in the Tour de France at the age of 25. He won less than two years after his very serious accident in August 2020 at the Tour of Poland and signed the 36th victory of his career, his eleventh of the year. Behind him, Van Aert finished second again, like on Friday in the inaugural time trial in Copenhagen.

The Belgian, one of the Tour’s most prominent riders since his first participation in 2019, is wearing yellow for the first time. He dispossessed Belgian Yves Lampaert (Quick-Step) of the leader’s jersey, delayed by a fall at the start of the last twenty kilometers but then quickly returned to the peloton.

Another collective crash occurred in the last three kilometres, with no chronometric consequences. The outgoing winner of the Tour, the Slovenian Tadej Pogacar, crossed the line late without a gap being charged according to the regulations. For the stage victory, Jakobsen edged Van Aert by one wheel, the day after his teammate Lampaert’s victory. Dane Mads Pedersen took third place.

In this 202.2 km stage, the Danish public, who came in large numbers but wisely lined up on both sides of the road, celebrated the passage of the Tour peloton until the approach of the suspenseful final on the Grand Belt linking two of the country’s large islands, Seeland and Funen. Without knowing the series of falls often frequent at the start of the event, the race was summed up in its first half in a procession preceded by a breakaway of four runners, the Dane Magnus Cort Nielsen, who secured the first best climber’s polka dot jersey, the Norwegian Sven Erik Byström, as well as the French Cyril Barthe and Pierre Rolland, left behind along the way.

Byström, who remained alone in the lead, was caught before the last thirty kilometers by the increasingly nervous peloton due to the changes of direction. On the very wide carriageway of the double bridge, entirely occupied by the riders, the pace was slowed by the headwind which deterred the attackers. But Colombian Rigoberto Uran (second in the 2017 Tour), delayed before entering the bridge, was forced into a long chase to get into the peloton before the last eight kilometers.

On Sunday, the Tour spends its last day in Denmark in the 182 kilometer long third stage between Vejle and Sönderborg, before the evening transfer to France.