Tour de France 2014 Favourites Stage 7: 2 short climbs mean advantage Sagan?
Thursday, July 11th, 2014- The first uphill finish awaits the riders tomorrow but today should be another chance for the sprinters. However, with 2 category 4 climbs in the finale, can the Kittel keep in touch so that he can sprint for the victory at the finish? (Slideshow route/profile)
The stage is relatively short at 121 kilometres. The first of the two climbs is 17 kilometres from the finish while the second is just 5.5 kilometres out. The latter is the Côte de Boufflers, a 1.3 kilometre drag at almost 8%.
The Giant-Shimano team will look to control the race, but at that gradient it may be difficult. One man who will look to take advantage is Peter Sagan, who is powerful on short climbs and probably the fastest non-sprinter in the peloton.
If Cannondale are winding things up for Sagan, it’s possible Giant could turn to Degenkolb instead of Kittel. The former is a better climber while still capable of beating Sagan in a sprint. That said, he seems to have an injury since the ‘Roubaix’-stage.
Don’t rule out Greipel either, he will certainly fancy his chances over Kittel on the hills.
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