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Tour de France stage 1 Leeds-Harrogate *Spoiler*

FJSFJS Posts: 4,820
edited July 2014 in Pro race
A bit early still for a spoiler thread, but then, no ordinary stages, and plenty to discuss, if only on geology and cheese.

What do people think? A Cavendish win seems already a given, but I for one think he'll have to work incredibly hard for it, and the route is more suited to someone like Sagan or Degenkolb. All three of the categorised climbs are lengthy and have sections of 15+%. The roads are narrow and twisty; the steep stretches on the climbs more suitable to drop sprinters than the long drags of Corsica, and the 60 km flat towards the finish are undulating and twisting, not easy to roganise a chase. Plus, the last 5 km has a coouple of short climbs, including a short 10% or so rise in the last 500m. Anywhere else you'd say Sagan. But then, this is Cav's goal of the season.

What I'm interested in getting views on is:
1. to what degree will the fact that it's been heavily sold as a sprinters' stage influence team tactics? Does Cannondale know it's a chance for Sagan to get yellow?
2. Does Cannondale have any allies to split it up and hold off the pure sprinters for a pretty long distance? Giant-Shimano will sit on the fence. Orica maybe?

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Posts

  • inseineinseine Posts: 5,785
    I have no idea, but I'm going to be there so that's all that matters! Can't wait.
  • too soon :D
  • takethehighroadtakethehighroad Posts: 5,989
    I'm not sure about all the others, but Sky and Giant have both recce'd the course. I would imagine OPQS have as well
  • TheBigBeanTheBigBean Posts: 14,014
    I imagine Sagan / Cannondale will try to take yellow and a significant lead in the green jersey on stage 2, so will probably not do much other than follow on stage 1. Greipel is often quite good at the short and steep hills, so he might try something.
  • FJSFJS Posts: 4,820
    too soon :D
    Too excited! :D . I'm sure there's two weeks worth of talk about these stages
  • deejaydeejay Posts: 3,138
    FJS wrote:
    too soon :D
    Too excited! :D . I'm sure there's two weeks worth of talk about these stages
    Sorry, Yawn.
    Let's go to Wales first. :arrow:
    Organiser, National Championship 50 mile Time Trial 1972
  • Yellow PerilYellow Peril Posts: 4,466
    So many will be there to spoil the party for Cav. I'm really hoping the whole spectacle will enthuse people to support the domestic calendar and, who knows, give some impetus to a top level one day race .
    @JaunePeril

    Winner of the Bike Radar Pro Race Wiggins Hour Prediction Competition
  • john1967john1967 Posts: 366
    deejay wrote:
    FJS wrote:
    too soon :D
    Too excited! :D . I'm sure there's two weeks worth of talk about these stages
    Sorry, Yawn.
    Let's go to Wales first. :arrow:


    yep you go to Wales and stay there.Me, im off to buttertubs now. :D

    This has Cav written all over it.Like the OP says it has been his season goal all year.
  • joelsimjoelsim Posts: 7,552
    I think it's got Kittel written all over it.
  • john1967john1967 Posts: 366
    Joelsim wrote:
    I think it's got Kittel written all over it.

    if it was in Germany I would probably agree with you but this is home turf for Cav and playing at home is allways an advantage in any sport.Dont forget the home crowd effect,i dont think hell be getting any nasty stuff thrown at him on this stage :lol:
  • philwintphilwint Posts: 763
    I rode all three categorised climbs today - we went from kettlewell to the bottom of the last big climb for tea with a mate :).

    The third felt a lot easier than the first, and both are nothing on buttertubs. There is a bit of kick near the bottom, but the steep bit is short, then it rolls up for a bit, but even I was in the big ring for lots of it.

    So i'm thinking even if the sprinters do get gapped on Buttertubs (which has a horrible ramp about 2/3 up!), they have 90km of not to hard stuff to get back on.
  • rick_chaseyrick_chasey Posts: 57,313 Lives Here
    Sounds fairly like a 3rd cat climb.

    Main thing will be the crashes, as per usual.

    If OPQS can't set this up for a sprint they're not worthy of being Belgium's #1 team.
  • takethehighroadtakethehighroad Posts: 5,989
    PROFIL.png

    It reminds me a litte like the stage into Marseille last year, which was a huge bunch sprint
  • ProssPross Posts: 29,585
    This has made my mind up for Stage 1, Buttertubs it is. It's further into the race than I realised and could see some real racing.
  • mulletmastermulletmaster Posts: 502
    Kittel has this.
  • Give me moreGive me more Posts: 487
    Kittel for me too. Can't see the sprint teams not getting it back together on stage 1, even if things do break up a little halfway.
  • philwintphilwint Posts: 763
    Sounds fairly like a 3rd cat climb.

    Main thing will be the crashes, as per usual.

    That occurred to me too. Couple of really tight hairpins on the descent from Buttertubs they will have to watch for, and the run from their to the last climb has some very tight and narrow turns. And a couple of places where the road narrows suddenly that could cause major issues. If the peloton blinks at the wrong moment they could be catastrophic!

    On the plus side though - it is a really enjoyable route to ride. The roads are in very good nick; every little village is decked out in yellow, with bunting, banners and bright and colourful new gardens; and the scenery is amazing. The top loop with the climbs is just a bit outside where I usually ride - about 20 miles too far north. But after yesterday I shall be sure to go there more often. Even if it does mean driving to the ride instead of starting from home.

    If anyone has the chance to come ride, even just a loop round the last two hills, I can't recommend it enough. Especially in the next few weeks.

    There were more bikes than cars. And I didn't see any idiots cycling like they were racing, and the car drivers were all patient and courteous.

    [edit] - some nice cafe's too. The one in Hawes we stopped at was handing out free bottled water to cyclists as well :)
  • RideOnTimeRideOnTime Posts: 4,712
    Think you may have gone off a bit early...
    Anyway...
    which is better to battle into Leeds or go straight for Harewood?
  • Mad_MalxMad_Malx Posts: 4,369
    What happened to

    The wine:
    real-ale-shutterstock-web-minerva-668x341.jpg

    The cheese:
    money-graphics-2006_972164a.jpg

    The girls:
    images?q=tbn:ANd9GcQWUaAJrLtQL3NyIdGr7HI5QFgxP07rhBCROJi8bqQNOamzLTZD

    The geology:
    malhamcovepaulheaton.jpg
  • MattMTBMattMTB Posts: 95
    Rode stage 1 today, I can't see Cav doing it tbh, it's very lumpy, not just the categorised climbs but all the little kicks out of villages and there's some other long drags. I think it will be a breakaway victory
  • joelsimjoelsim Posts: 7,552
    MattMTB wrote:
    Rode stage 1 today, I can't see Cav doing it tbh, it's very lumpy, not just the categorised climbs but all the little kicks out of villages and there's some other long drags. I think it will be a breakaway victory

    I guess we'll see whether Cav is a better climber than you :lol:
  • FJSFJS Posts: 4,820
    Joelsim wrote:
    MattMTB wrote:
    Rode stage 1 today, I can't see Cav doing it tbh, it's very lumpy, not just the categorised climbs but all the little kicks out of villages and there's some other long drags. I think it will be a breakaway victory

    I guess we'll see whether Cav is a better climber than you :lol:
    Don't think that's the point, is it?

    The combination of narrow roads and a couple of steep climbs will make it hard for the sprinters' teams. I reckon Cav can do it, but by the skin if his teeth. In any case it'll be a chaotic sprint with that run in
  • joelsimjoelsim Posts: 7,552
    FJS wrote:
    Joelsim wrote:
    MattMTB wrote:
    Rode stage 1 today, I can't see Cav doing it tbh, it's very lumpy, not just the categorised climbs but all the little kicks out of villages and there's some other long drags. I think it will be a breakaway victory

    I guess we'll see whether Cav is a better climber than you :lol:
    Don't think that's the point, is it?

    The combination of narrow roads and a couple of steep climbs will make it hard for the sprinters' teams. I reckon Cav can do it, but by the skin if his teeth. In any case it'll be a chaotic sprint with that run in

    For sure. The sprinters seem confident though, whereas stage 2 is a definite no for most although Sagan and Kristoff will need to perform for the green jersey.
  • MattMTBMattMTB Posts: 95
    First 40 miles, easy, after that lumpy until the run in from Ripon, I'm sure Cav is a hundred time better climber than me, but I just can't see it being for him- happy to be proved wrong though! :D
  • tailwindhometailwindhome Posts: 16,670
    Sophie Smith ‏@SophieSmith86 · 4m View translation
    Omega Pharma - Quick Step for @letour: Cavendish, Renshaw, Petacchi, Kwiatkowski, Martin, Gołaś, Bakelants, Trentin and Terpstra.
    Believe that a farther shore
    Is reachable from here.
    Believe in miracles
    And cures and healing wells
  • ProssPross Posts: 29,585


    Stage 1 preview from GCN

    Good point made about the chance of crosswinds on the moors, that would add an extra element. Not knowing that part of the world it was good to get an insight into what I'll be watching :)
  • joelsimjoelsim Posts: 7,552
    Cav ill. Not doing the Nationals and perhaps getting his excuses in early. Think I'll leave him out of my road.cc team.
  • r0bhr0bh Posts: 1,595
    Joelsim wrote:
    Think I'll leave him out of my road.cc team.

    I'm sure he will be devastated.
  • TMRTMR Posts: 3,986
    Joelsim wrote:
    I think it's got Kittel written all over it.

    Me too. As much as I hate to admit it, it's difficult to see past Marcel.
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