TDF 2021:- Stage 3, Lorient > Pontivy 182.9 km **Spoilers**

Stage 3: Lorient > Pontivy 182.9 km

28-6-21
Start 12-10pm


After two days that catered for the puncheurs the sprinters of this year’s Tour de France will get their first opportunity. The stage departs Lorient, the hometown of former King of the Mountains winner Warren Barguil. Lorient hosted the start of the 5th stage of the 2018 Tour de France. The race went to Quimper, where Peter Sagan took the spoils.
The riders travel from Lorient with the race hugging the coastline before heading inland, through the department of Morbihan, to Pontivy, where the finish lies near the enchanting Château des Rohan.



While the route is not completely flat and does contain two, fourth category climbs, it is nowhere near as demanding as the weekend stages. So too is the finish, where a 3.5 kilometers downhill flies down to a flat finale, near the 15th century, Château des Rohan in Pontivy.





The first of two consecutive days penciled in by the sprinters, so expect a small breakaway to comprise of the French wildcard teams. Only sprinters who have arrived with poor condition may struggle, but the peloton should arrive en masse.
The finishing sprint takes place along Pontivy's high street, with the line below the castle walls.

Favourites stage 3 Tour de France 2021

***** Caleb Ewan, Tim Merlier
**** Arnaud Démare, Wout van Aert
*** Mark Cavendish, Cees Bol, Mathieu van der Poel, Mads Pedersen
** Christophe Laporte, Nacer Bouhanni, Danny van Poppel, Peter Sagan
* André Greipel, Niccolò Bonifazio, Max Walscheid, Michael Matthews, Sonny Colbrelli


Lorient

Stage town for the 12th time
Population: 57,149

Lorient's history began with the creation of the Le Faouëdic shipyards. The construction of the ship the Soleil d'Orient, better known as the Orient, gave its name to the town, which enjoyed an era of great prosperity until 1769. In 1791, Lorient turned its back on colonial trade to become a military port. Between 1880 and 1930, the growth of trade and fishing led to the creation of major port infrastructures.
The Second World War then turned its destiny upside down. After the fall of France in June 1940 the head of Germany’s U-boat Arm, Konteradmiral Karl Dönitz, was keen to use the French Atlantic ports as forward bases for his U-boat force. Lorient was selected and the base built was capable of sheltering thirty submarines under cover. Although Lorient was heavily damaged by Allied bombing raids, this naval base survived through to the end of the war.



Langoustines
Lorient is the most important port in mainland France for langoustines, as well as Loctudy and Lesconil.



On the road

Km 30
Carnac (Pop: 4,300)
Carnac is one of the two sites in Brittany where the first human traces were found.
The alignments of Carnac
The megalithic alignments were erected around 4500 BC. The site has the highest concentration of megaliths in the world. Over nearly 4 km, there is an alignment of nearly 4,000 standing stones: menhirs, dolmens and covered walkways.



Pontivy

Stage town for the first time
Population: 14,600

Pontivy owes its origin to St Ivy, a Scottish monk who came to evangelise Brittany. According to legend, he had a bridge built over the Blavet river, which gave its name to the town: "Pont-Ivy". Land of the Rohans, Pontivy built its reputation around its 15th century medieval castle.
Even if the Tour de France has never stopped here, Pontivy is a major cycling centre in Brittany as the birthplace of several personalities in this sport in the region, starting with David Lappartient, the current President of the International Cycling Union...... ;)

It is also the birthplace of the Le Drogo brothers: Ferdinand, French champion in 1927 and 1928, and Paul, winner of a stage in the 1929 Tour before becoming the sports director for Louison Bobet and the Groussard brothers. Another local cycling figure, Fernand Picot, twice winner of the Grand Prix de Plouay, took part in eight consecutive Tours de France between 1955 and 1962, finishing 13th in 1957. In recent years, Pontivy has been the birthplace of the French road champion Audrey Cordon-Ragot.

Galettes with mashed potatoes
The recipe is from Pontivy, this mashed potato pancake is a speciality of central Morbihan.
It is a pancake like any other, which once cooked can be decorated to taste with sausage, bacon, andouille, or salmon, with the difference that the classic cake dough (flour, salt and water) is mixed with mashed potatoes. This obviously makes the dough more compact, more nourishing and less light, but that's what makes it so charming.




"Science is a tool for cheaters". An anonymous French PE teacher.
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Comments

  • Pross
    Pross Posts: 39,893
    I know it's always subjective and you prepare these in advance (I was going to make the comment when you originally posted the thread this afternoon) but was wondering what the thinking is in WVA being ranked higher than Cav or MVDP?

    I did think the stage might be a bit lumpy and take its toll on Cavendish but I haven't seen anything recently to suggest WVA would beat him or MVDP in a straight sprint. Also, I would have thought Colbrelli's recent form warrants more than one star.

    What it does do is show what seems like a very large field of potential sprint stage winners.
  • blazing_saddles
    blazing_saddles Posts: 21,642
    Pross said:

    I know it's always subjective and you prepare these in advance (I was going to make the comment when you originally posted the thread this afternoon) but was wondering what the thinking is in WVA being ranked higher than Cav or MVDP?

    I did think the stage might be a bit lumpy and take its toll on Cavendish but I haven't seen anything recently to suggest WVA would beat him or MVDP in a straight sprint. Also, I would have thought Colbrelli's recent form warrants more than one star.

    What it does do is show what seems like a very large field of potential sprint stage winners.

    I was actually trying to be objective.
    Obviously, tomorrow should be the first bunch sprint, when things will likely become clearer. I may have to revise stage 4 as a result.

    However to explain my reasoning.
    MVDP: Were Tim Merlier not in his team as the pure sprinter, I would rank him the same as WVA. In flat sprints this season, MVDP has looked after Merlier.
    Cav: I know Pontivy well and I have a feeling he may struggle to maintain position. Hope I am wrong.
    Colbrelli has great for but does he have the pace of pure sprinter?
    "Science is a tool for cheaters". An anonymous French PE teacher.
  • rick_chasey
    rick_chasey Posts: 71,671
    Anyone else notice “Mateo” van de Poel on the call?
  • orraloon
    orraloon Posts: 12,536

    Anyone else notice “Mateo” van de Poel on the call?

    JB Hager on TheMove podcast with Johann Bruyneel kept using the 'Mateo'. USAnians can't pronounce nuffink correctly innit.
  • blazing_saddles
    blazing_saddles Posts: 21,642
    Having said that I now read that WVA reckons he won't contest the sprints until after the ITT.
    Saving himself the try and grab the leader's jersey against the clock.
    Minus any time bonuses? Good luck with that.
    "Science is a tool for cheaters". An anonymous French PE teacher.
  • ddraver
    ddraver Posts: 26,322
    edited June 2021
    Mathieu is quite difficult to get right I think.

    Matt-you isn't really right, but neither is Math-you. It's sort of in between with a touch of Matt(th)-ee-you.

    It's a little bit like 'Clarkes' being able to tell when someone pronounces the 'e' ;)
    We're in danger of confusing passion with incompetence
    - @ddraver
  • Lanterne_Rogue
    Lanterne_Rogue Posts: 4,091
    Think a lot will depend on how fast tomorrow is raced, given how much it rolls up and down. Ewan has to be favourite though, surely.

    FWIW, after today I don't rank Démare above Cavendish - I don't think he's climbing any better and I don't think he's got any edge in raw speed. It looked like everyone at least accelerated hard in the intermediate today, regardless of whether they held their speed, and Démare couldn't match Ewan or Cavendish.

    With Merlier his team have split priorities now with defending the yellow jersey which I think might count against him (DQS, on the other hand...). I don't think Merlier has shown for the intermediates either, which is interesting - has he been saving energy, avoiding showing his hand, or just been working for MVDP?
  • Pross
    Pross Posts: 39,893
    ddraver said:

    Mathieu is quite difficult to get right I think.

    Matt-you isn't really right, but neither is Math-you. It's sort of in between with a touch of Matt(th)-ee-you.

    It's a little bit like 'Clarkes' being able to tell when someone pronounces the 'e' ;)

    I assume it's a bit like my SA mate who used to moan about Charlize Theron's name getting pronounced with with the soft, Anglo th sound to the point where she started using it herself. His pronunciation was more or less Teron but with that throaty sound after the T.
  • RichN95.
    RichN95. Posts: 27,129
    Pross said:



    I assume it's a bit like my SA mate who used to moan about Charlize Theron's name getting pronounced with with the soft, Anglo th sound to the point where she started using it herself. His pronunciation was more or less Teron but with that throaty sound after the T.


    The same happened for Martin Offiah,
    Twitter: @RichN95
  • blazing_saddles
    blazing_saddles Posts: 21,642
    I am glad somebody else managed to load this from the race roadbook.
    The forecast means it may well be wetl. The run to the line could be.............tricky.







    The descent into town is quite narrow, this is top, inside the final 4 kilometers. There are buildings and street furniture, too, where the slope is at it's steepest:



    Plus there's a 180 degree change of direction over a bridge and another 180 degree turn with a narrow (roundabout) entrance and exit, which brings them back through town.
    "Science is a tool for cheaters". An anonymous French PE teacher.
  • No_Ta_Doctor
    No_Ta_Doctor Posts: 13,096
    Hmmmm.... Advantage any seasoned sprint train with years of experience and attention to detail then. C'mon Cav!
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  • blazing_saddles
    blazing_saddles Posts: 21,642
    Pross said:
    Excuses for the flowery Google translate, but I noticed a weather warning symbol on there:

    A pluvio-stormy zone extends this morning from the north of the Massif Central to the North-East then evacuates during the morning. Rainy weather wins the west facade. Thunderstorms develop in the morning from the Gironde estuary to Brittany. In the afternoon, the rains can be sustained from New Aquitaine to Brittany, west Normandy and to the Center. The west wind is quite strong on the Aquitaine coast with gusts up to 80 km / h. Instability also increases further east in the second part of the day.
    "Science is a tool for cheaters". An anonymous French PE teacher.
  • Lanterne_Rogue
    Lanterne_Rogue Posts: 4,091
    That roundabout marked with about 1km to go is only a mini one, but it's raised and could be slippery in the wet, to judge by streetview. More importantly it's offset to the right, so the left hand side of the road gets a straight run to the line.
  • No_Ta_Doctor
    No_Ta_Doctor Posts: 13,096
    The windiness got me excited there for a moment, but the Aquitaine coast is much further south, wind for the course is light and from N. Rain though. Go Mads P!
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  • rick_chasey
    rick_chasey Posts: 71,671

    Go Mads P!

    How's he doing? Had a rough year.
  • Lanterne_Rogue
    Lanterne_Rogue Posts: 4,091
    Inrng suggests Merlier had banged both knees up in a crash on day one, btw. Explains why he hadn't shown in the intermediate yesterday, perhaps. Will be interesting to see if they work for him today or he's still recovering.
  • No_Ta_Doctor
    No_Ta_Doctor Posts: 13,096

    Go Mads P!

    How's he doing? Had a rough year.
    Bit banged up from stage 1, but he's Trek's main man for the sprints. Difficult to know about form really
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  • rick_chasey
    rick_chasey Posts: 71,671

    Go Mads P!

    How's he doing? Had a rough year.
    Bit banged up from stage 1, but he's Trek's main man for the sprints. Difficult to know about form really
    Let's see. I don't want him to be the next Matti Breschel.
  • DeVlaeminck
    DeVlaeminck Posts: 8,707
    Wonder if Cavs late inclusion will have compromised him in terms of being able to recce key finishes.

    I'm guessing possibly not too much of an issue as most town centres aren't amenable to riding through at 35mph ignoring lights, one way systems etc before the day itself.
    [Castle Donington Ladies FC - going up in '22]
  • rick_chasey
    rick_chasey Posts: 71,671

    Wonder if Cavs late inclusion will have compromised him in terms of being able to recce key finishes.

    I'm guessing possibly not too much of an issue as most town centres aren't amenable to riding through at 35mph ignoring lights, one way systems etc before the day itself.

    Of all the riders I would guess Cav would be least affected by this, not least as he has a decent pilot in Morkov.
  • andyp
    andyp Posts: 10,048
    He needs to trust Morkov though, which isn't something he always does.
  • rick_chasey
    rick_chasey Posts: 71,671
    Hmm interesting hadn’t considered that
  • Lanterne_Rogue
    Lanterne_Rogue Posts: 4,091
    Counter-argument to that: Cavendish properly went for the intermediate yesterday, which is something he rarely bothers with if he's not chasing a jersey. He placed lower down in the one on Saturday too, though I didn't watch it to see what happened. Certainly yesterday though feels like it was being used as a practice with Mørkøv. They also got a lot better together through Belgium, so I think that relationship might be coming along okay.

    Perhaps more concerning for Cavendish is the work they made him do on the front yesterday. Mørkøv's repeated "nah, you got this, I'll just sit here a little longer" was rather amusing - I'm not honestly sure if all the looking around was because Cavendish wanted to knock it off or was just being ultra-paranoid about where everyone was behind him as he jostled with UAE though.
  • kingstongraham
    kingstongraham Posts: 25,986
    WvA says he's not getting involved in sprints till after the TT.
  • Dorset_Boy
    Dorset_Boy Posts: 6,747
    New bike day for Mathieu

  • blazing_saddles
    blazing_saddles Posts: 21,642
    Jasper Philipsen seems to be the forgotten sprinter of Alpecin Fenix.
    Just sayin'.
    "Science is a tool for cheaters". An anonymous French PE teacher.
  • rick_chasey
    rick_chasey Posts: 71,671

    Jasper Philipsen seems to be the forgotten sprinter of Alpecin Fenix.
    Just sayin'.

    Not Merlier?
  • blazing_saddles
    blazing_saddles Posts: 21,642

    Jasper Philipsen seems to be the forgotten sprinter of Alpecin Fenix.
    Just sayin'.

    Not Merlier?
    Well, Merlier's not been forgotten, so yeah.

    At least the start of today's stage is dry.
    "Science is a tool for cheaters". An anonymous French PE teacher.
  • No_Ta_Doctor
    No_Ta_Doctor Posts: 13,096

    Jasper Philipsen seems to be the forgotten sprinter of Alpecin Fenix.
    Just sayin'.

    Not Merlier?
    Well, Merlier's not been forgotten, so yeah.
    .
    Except by me, in my fantasy team. Had MvdP to cover sprints... Doh.

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