The loss of some of its biggest stars certainly has not dampened the drama and excitement of the Tour de France – as stage 15 proved in incredible style.
Jack Bauer (Garmin-Sharp) and Martin Elmiger (IAM Cycling) never looked a threat in the two-man break but their grit and determination made for a stunning finale.
They had still not been reeled in as they passed under the flamme rouge, and Bauer remained the last man standing as the finishing line drew agonisingly closer.
Ultimately, the New Zealand rider did not have the legs and Alexander Kristoff sprinted to his second stage victory of this year’s Tour.
But as the riders enjoy the second and final rest day, where does it leave us? Read our five observations over the following pages.