Richie Porte chose the day his cycling future was announced to make his loudest statement yet at the sport's biggest race.
Cycling observers heaped praise on the Tasmanian as he made time on most of his general classification rivals to climb into the top 10 at the Tour de France.
On what he called "a bitter-sweet day" when teammate Bauke Mollema crashed out with a fractured wrist, Porte confirmed he is leaving Trek-Segafredo at the end of the year.
He is likely to be rejoining INEOS - the outfit where he enjoyed some of his greatest successes when called Team Sky.
On an explosive 191-kilometre 13th stage to the summit of the extinct volcano Le Puy Mary in France's Massif Central, the 35-year-old Launceston rider finished 14th.
Despite losing a few seconds to race leader Primoz Roglic (Jumbo Visma) and fellow Slovenian Tadej Pogacar (UAE Team Emirates), Porte was the best of the rest overall contenders, leapfrogging Frenchmen Guillaume Martin (Cofidis) and Romain Bardet (AG2R La Mondiale) and making time on Colombian trio Nairo Quintana, Rigoberto Uran and last year's winner Egan Bernal.
"It was an absolute grovel to the line," Porte said.
"The two Slovenians are the strongest guys in the race so to finish just behind them is a good result and to put some time into some of the other guys in the top 10 felt good.
"It is very bitter-sweet but hopefully the next two days are hard stages, so I hope that we can keep chipping away at the GC game.
Colliding with a stopping TV motorbike while enjoying a potentially podium-delivering breakaway could be dismissed as a freak occurrence ... if it was a one-off.@LeTour owes @richie_porte a break - preferably not of the bone variety, again.https://t.co/0GDNEMtzVk— Rob Shaw (@TheShawThing) August 24, 2020
"Sunday on the Grand Colombier - that's where the time gaps are going to be big, so hopefully I get through Saturday and fuel up tonight because today was a hard day.
"The guys were really good and put me in a good position, and I had good legs today."
On a day when cyclingnews said Porte "rolled back the years", he also announced: "Obviously I won't be at Trek-Segafredo next year. I think that's pretty well known. I've signed elsewhere, but we have to wait because nothing has been officially released."
SBS presenter Mike Tomalaris subsequently confirmed Porte - who now sits 2:06 off the race lead - will be signing with INEOS.
The station's coverage team was glowing in its assessment of the father-of-two's ride up the brutal final climb.
Commentator Matthew Keenan said: "Lawn-ceston stand up because Richie is! He's up on the pedals, he's up on the charge, he's climbing the general classification."
Robbie McEwen added: "Richie Porte is doing a magnificent job. What a performance by the Tasmanian. Great to see him in the top 10."