Wednesday, September 14, 2022
HomeCycling5 Questions On Tour Relaxation Day #2 (of three)

5 Questions On Tour Relaxation Day #2 (of three)


it’s been a slowly constructing Tour de France, approaching the midway level with no main climbs other than one gimmicky Planche, an nearly Giro-like method to delaying the gratification. After all, per week from now perhaps we’ll know all an excessive amount of about what is going to occur in Paris, and we’ll look longingly again on the time when it was all nonetheless left to win, however anyway. It’s been an entertaining race in small methods. Time for the large stuff to start.

Can Tadej Pogačar Stand the Warmth?

That is everybody’s favourite subject, however Pogs is pushing again at the moment on the concept he’s at an obstacle within the warmth. How do we all know he has an issue? Doesn’t everybody endure within the warmth? Is Vingegaard so nice on sizzling days? All completely cheap defenses.

Besides that this wonderful CyclingTips article from earlier than the Tour, earlier than all of us bought labored up about this topic, contained some good clues. First, sure, the one information level we’ve is final yr’s Ventoux stage, which everybody is aware of about as a result of Vingegaard put a while into Pogs. So there may be that.

However within the article Pogačar himself appears to confess what he’s denying at the moment. There, he stated he suffers a bit extra within the warmth and cracked a bit of bit final yr. Additionally he’s quoted on a number of events from previous years about how he has a bonus within the chilly climate. Is the corollary true? We are going to discover out.

I believe Pogs can be superb Tuesday and Wednesday, however by Thursday anybody who doesn’t like the warmth will certainly present it. That’s the Alpe d’Huez stage, vying with Wednesday for Queen Stage honors — see Will’s Mountains Preview — and would be the hottest day of this week (with even worse to come back subsequent week). The cumulative climbing and struggling within the warmth will crack anybody who doesn’t like that kind of factor, which is likely to be everybody, however the Tour can be loads completely different if it’s Pogs and never Jonas. So don’t bounce to conclusions about this one straight away.

Who Is Your Favourite Sleeper Choose?

We’re largely speaking in regards to the general competitors as a two-man race, however riders 3-10 are all fairly tightly ranked for a race that’s about to achieve the excessive mountains, and you may’t dismiss anybody’s possibilities simply but. I’ve bought three names, so as: Adam Yates, Primož Roglič, and David Gaudu. Fallacious Yates has seemed proper loads recently, precisely the place he must be, like a man biding his time. The INEOS flood the sector factor isn’t nothing, if they’ll ever put Pogs underneath any actual stress. I imagine in his climbing greater than Thomas, although test again Wednesday.

Rogs hardly wants dialogue; he was nearly a co-favorite to begin with and solely shipped two minutes due to horrible luck. The explanation to get excited is that you would be able to inform Pogs may be very targeted on Vingegaard, so there may be actual potential for some one-two motion that places Pogs on the defensive— if Rogs is feeling actually good. Gaudu is the man on the ascent, career-wise, solely 25 and nonetheless on the lookout for his first top-10 end. So the potential seems to be very attractive… and that’s all it’s till we see it. Good group round him too. Anyway, buckle up, right here we go (effectively, Wednesday a minimum of).

Who Will Have the KOM Jersey a Week From Right now?

Getting deep into hypothesis now… however I’ll say that Thibaut Pinot. He’s coming into some kind, and he has in all probability the best incentive of anybody. Clearly it begins with being a house nation favourite, and being an emotional man who would like to reciprocate the assist. That’s the kind of emotional component that may energy a rider on a breakaway over HC climbs. He’s mendacity third now — with hardly any factors given thus far — and the opposite apparent favourite, final yr’s winner Pogačar, can be underneath an excessive amount of stress to consider KOM factors. Possibly Pinot can’t take it to Paris however I can be shocked to see him wherever however on the unfastened Wednesday.

Some others… Simon Geschke has it now, and gained’t be eager to provide it up, though I don’t assume he can stick with Pinot over the foremost HC climbs, however he’ll in all probability spend Tuesday padding his lead. Nairo Quintana? He seems to be typically strong however can also be not in a really favorable spot at +2.13, so if he goes, it’s not clear UAE will monitor him down.

Who Has Let You Down the Most?

Dani Martinez got here in as a possible winner of the Tour — longshot, in fact, however nonetheless. Now he’s punted away 17 minutes. Is he the most important disappointment of the Tour? On the GC facet, in all probability sure. However you even have Peter Sagan by no means moving into the inexperienced jersey competitors, which begs the query what TotalEnergies has in thoughts for this Tour. In case you’re BikeExchange, Michael Matthews’ two close to misses on stage victories has to stay within the group’s craw. Anybody else letting you down? Or are you largely simply upset with your self for not placing Pogačar in your FSA DS group? I is likely to be projecting right here.

What Will Wout Do Subsequent?

The bucket checklist objects are getting ticked off quickly, having gained from the break. Final yr he gained a time trial, a mountain stage, and a closing dash. This yr he was effectively on his method to racking up an equally spectacular set of close to misses, till he stopped lacking. Anyway, Wout has the Inexperienced Jersey in his clutches now and might afford to give attention to his subsequent goal… serving to Jumbo Visma win the Tour! So my guess is that he utterly modifications the result of a essential mountain stage on behalf of his group. Is that sticking my neck out? Probably not. Bought anything to request that Wout do to maintain us entertained? Ship your concepts in by way of feedback and I’ll be sure that Jumbo administration makes them their highest precedence. Thanks!

Ought to be a implausible, fascinating week. Take pleasure in!

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