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Lefevere almost screwing up Alaphilippe’s feed is comedy gold

Loulou taking a bottle from his boss during the breakaway was a helluva scene

Parick Lefevere almost screwing up Allaphillipe's feed is comedy gold

Sure, Julian Alaphilippe lost Stage 6 to Pelayo Sánchez, but he also almost lost his bidon. We cycling fans, however, have won a meme that will last forever.

Sánchez triumphed in Thursday’s stage of the Giro d’Italia, which saw riders tackling the iconic white gravel roads of Tuscany reminiscent of the Strade Bianche. The Movistar rider took a huge upset over Alaphilippe to claim the top spot on the podium.

Attacks galore

The initial stretch of the route was characterized by frenzied action, with Alaphilippe forming part of an escape trio that reached the summit of the first categorized climb just ahead of the peloton, which was being led by UAE-Emirates. Meanwhile, the sprinters were falling behind. A larger group bridged the gap to Alaphilippe’s trio with 95 km remaining. Although this group was eventually reeled back in, Alaphilippe quickly surged ahead again, this time with a group of seven riders, and they were granted more freedom by the peloton.

Lefevere on bidon duty

Ultimately it come down to the trio of Sánchez, Alaphilippe and Lucas Plapp that stayed away. In a very tight sprint, the Spaniard took a huge win. But a hilarious moment unfolded earlier, when none other than Soudal Quick-Step big boss was seen almost botching a feed to Alaphilippe.

It’s more and more common to see all members of pro cycling team staff members out on the feed zones. With more emphasis on increased nutrition, especially on courses that can be trickier, it’s all hands on deck to ensure the riders are well fed and fuelled. Gone are the days that was solely in the purview of soigneurs.

The Lefevere/Alaphilippe drama

Of course, the hilarity of seeing the big boss feed was heightened given his and the Frenchman’s strained relationship. Back in February, Lefevere wasin the news quite a bit recently–and not for good reasons. He had harsh words for Alaphilippe, as well his wife, former pro Marion Rousse.
In an interview with the Flemish media Humo on, Lefevere criticized the French rider. “I think there have been too many parties and too much alcohol at home,” the Belgian said. “Julian is under the control of Marion Rousse. I spoke to him in November. We were with Marion and his manager Dries Smets. I said, ‘It can’t go on like this. If you still do something wrong, I’ll fire you right away.”

Rousse clapped back. “Whatever Mr. Lefevere’s feelings towards me, it is unacceptable to attack our private lives as he is doing. So no, I don’t drink alcohol, ever,” she tweeted n French. “We also didn’t during the holidays because with a three-year-old, we prefer to feel good in the morning. The work that I do continues to fascinate me, and I am busy with plenty of projects. From now on, please stop speaking wrongly and show respect and class.”

That wasn’t the first time the Belgian found himself in hot water. In fact, in March the UCI issued him an ultimatum for two instances of disparaging remarks towards women. If he didn’t apologize (he did, sort of) he would have to pay 20,000 Swiss Francs.

Lefevere has been quite public in his feelings about Alaphilippe’s performances over the past few years, even saying that he cost too much for what he’s worth. Which makes it sort of a bummer that the French rider couldn’t win today. Had Alaphilippe won today, he would have had the honour of winning stages in all three Grand Tours. Plus, it would be nice to see a rider who was so dominant for several years show some of his old self. Hey, there’s still a few weeks to go. Maybe Pat can go practise his bottle handoffs for the next time he’s working ravitaillement.

Check out the near bidon botch below.

Bonus video for additional, and related, lols: check out Youri Keulen drop five watter bottles at the Singapore T100 triathlon.