The 18th stage of the Tour de France would be a stern test for the riders, a test that Romain Bardet (AG2R La Mondiale) would pass with flying colours, as he soloed to victory. Serge Pauwels was absolutely fantastic once again, finishing in 6th place for Team MTN-Qhubeka p/b Samsung. As has been the order of proceedings over the last few stages, a big breakaway went clear in the opening kilometers of the stage. Serge made sure that he was part of the 29 riders that went clear. Team Giant-Alpecin and Trek Factory Racing made it tough for the break to get much of a.

The Tour de France has reached the Alps. The 17th stage saw our MTN-Qhubeka p/b Samsung flag being waved proudly once again as Serge Pauwles, Daniel Teklehaimanot and Merhawi Kudus all made the big breakaway of the day. Gruber Images were our eye in the Alpine sky once again..

We are extremely sad to announce that our young South African climber, Louis Meintjes, will abandon the Tour de France today.  It was our team’s goal to finish our debut Le Tour with all 9 riders but rider health is our team’s first priority and Louis will be unable to take the start of today’s 18th stage. Louis is only 23 years of age and we see him as Tour de France GC contender of the future. His health and recovery is our main concern at this point in time. Louis fell ill yesterday morning, he battled through the 17th stage but finished in a lot.