Rosskopf, who is almost two weeks into his debut Tour de France, quickly settled into a good rhythm on the punchy 27.2-kilometer course and set the provisional fastest time at the second intermediate checkpoint after 15.5 kilometers.
Rosskopf powered on and was one second behind the then-fastest time from Kasper Asgreen (Deceuninck-Quick Step) at the third check point after 21.9 kilometers before eventually crossing the line, after the steep kick in the final kilometer, to stop the clock in 36:31, nine seconds down.
The former United States Time Trial champion’s time stood well against the rest of the peloton, with only Thomas De Gendt (Lotto Soudal) setting a faster time to bump Rosskopf into third place, where he remained as the next 50 riders crossed the finish line.
The main threat to Rosskopf’s standing came from the General Classification contenders and despite a few riders going faster than Rosskopf, his time well and truly exceeded his personal expectations.
With race leader Julian Alaphilippe (Deceuninck-Quick Step) the last rider to cross the line and clock the fastest time of the day, Rosskopf’s tenth place was confirmed, his best result in a time trial this season.
Quotes from the Finish Line
“I’m really happy with my top ten. You wouldn’t believe how bad I was feeling this morning so to know that I can produce an effort like that gives me a lot of confidence. I definitely faded towards the end but I am happy with the result. Every day, we are fighting for the breakaway and sometimes I think do I actually want to be in the breakaway if I feel this bad, so it’s nice to know that I can flip the switch and dig deep. It gives me a lot of confidence for the rest of the race.”
“It was a really hard time trial. The first half feels like the entire thing is uphill and then you come down and I don’t know if it was just me, or not, but it felt like a headwind so even on the part when you are hoping to go 60 kilometers per hour, you’re still kind of flailing a bit not going as fast as you hope for so it was really tough, the whole thing. I was just one second down at the third time check and you have to hope that you can overcome that but Asgreen is a bigger guy and has been on of the strongest guys in the race so far. I like to focus on the TT so I just had to do what I could today and we will see how it affects me over the days to come.”
“You couldn’t hide anything out there. The start was good. I did a pace at the start that would be good if I had had a really good day but I slowed down in the second half. I think you have to try though. If I was conservative at the start, I would be nowhere close but, by starting fast, I gave myself a chance. It’s always a mystery to me to see how the legs are going to react at this point in a Grand Tour.”
Marco Pinotti, Head of Performance:
“The goal of today’s stage was to try and get a top ten with Joey Rosskopf and we just managed to achieve that goal. I’m happy with the way he raced because this morning he felt tired. I think he rode a very good time trial. He started a little conservatively because the first hilly part is not his forte but I think he rode a consistent pace. Overall, a top ten at his first Tour de France and with this field is a great result for Joey.”
Tour de France
Stage 13 Pau > Pau (27.2km)
Top 3: 1. Julian Alaphilippe (Deceuninck-Quick Step), 2. Geraint Thomas (Team INEOS), 3. Thomas De Gendt (Lotto Soudal)
CCC Team top 3: 10. Joey Rosskopf, 42. Łukasz Wiśniowski, 52. Michael Schär