In theory, those four are the fastest men in the Tour de France-peloton. Kittel seems to be best armed. In the Giro he outsprinted Greipel on the first two occasions (Cav and Kristoff were not in the mix)). In a later stage Greipel outperformed him once, yet this was on a route unlike today’s. Kittel is fastest when it comes to pure speed. In the course of his season he won nine stages, plus the overall in the unsurpassed sprinter’s race, Dubai Tour.
For comparison: André Greipel took seven races, Mark Cavendish three, and Alexander Kristoff. Until La Grande Boucle the big names rarely went head-to-head, except Kittel and Greipel in the Giro (2-1 for Kittel) and the German National Road race Championships (1-0 for Greipel), while Kristoff and Cav did get head-to-head in Qatar and California (5-2 for Kristoff).
Peter Sagan has six victories under his belt in 2016, yet he is a different type of rider. He is so much more than a sprinter, just remember the way he won the Tour of Flanders after a brilliant solo.
Favourites 1st stage Tour de France 2016:
*** Marcel Kittel, Mark Cavendish, André Greipel
** Alexander Kristoff, Peter Sagan, John Degenkolb
* Michael Matthews, Dylan Groenewegen, Bryan Coquard, Davide Cimolai
Tour de France 2016 stage 1: Route maps, height profiles, etc.
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