France’s Anthony Turgis won the ninth stage of the Tour de France as Britain’s Tom Pidcock was pipped on the line

Pogacar, of UAE-Team Emirates, leads Remco Evenepoel of Soudal-Quick Step by 33 seconds overall, with defending champion Jonas Vingegaard of Visma-Lease a Bike in third, one minute 15 seconds further back.

While Pogacar and Evenepoel sought to get up the road at various times prior to Monday’s rest day, the Dane was less adventurous and content to neutralise their moves having had to swap bikes with Jan Tratnik after an early mechanical issue.

On the one occasion he was caught out, with about 20km remaining, his American team-mate Matteo Jorgenson superbly dragged him back onto the wheel of Pogacar as all the general classification riders came back together at the end.

“I ride with my heart and today was a day to do it,” said Pogacar, who appeared bemused by Visma-Lease a Bike’s strategy.

“They only look at me and they underestimate the others. It could backfire,” added the 25-year-old, who is attempting to complete the first Giro d’Italia-Tour de France double since 1998.

While there was little movement towards the top of the overall standings, Canada’s Derek Gee – who was also in the breakaway with Pidcock and Turgis – was rewarded by moving inside the top 10 by finishing third.