The fighting spirit and determination to put in the hard yards from Fabio Jakobsen (Quick-Step Alpha Vinyl) on Stage 17 of the Tour de France has drawn a comparison to Usain Bolt.
Jakobsen showed unbelievable drive and resolve to just about survive the time cut by just 17 seconds on the brutal climb to end the stage on Wednesday and he was surrounded by his team-mates and staff members in moving scenes at the finish.
The 25-year-old Dutchman needs to survive one more day in the Pyrenees in order to be able to take on the sprint on Friday before Sunday’s famous final stage on the Champs-Elysees.
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The Breakaway team made an interesting comparison between Jakobsen and athletics legend Bolt, making the point that what the cyclist had to endure would be like the Jamaican sprinter having to get through "days of marathons" before his 100m final.
“We often forget about those riders having to fight through inside the time limit,” said Dan Lloyd.
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Watch as exhausted Jakobsen gets special support from team in emotional finish
“I can only compare it to Usain Bolt in his heyday – and in order to get to the Olympic 100m final, he needs to do all these days of marathons, and finish within a certain time of the winner of all those marathons, to even have a chance of sprinting in the 100m final.
“It’s very easy to forget how much turmoil and pain those guys are going through just for these final two opportunities on Friday and Sunday.”
Robbie McEwen added: “We saw Jakobsen collapse at the finish. That final 200 metres took him 1’15” compared to his normal 200m in a sprint takes him 10 seconds. It’s never-ending for him.”
Thankfully for Jakobsen, he just made it and was able to celebrate with his team after the heroic charge to the line with fans also very appreciative of his efforts.
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