Tour de France 2016 Favourites stage 2: Power to the punchers!

Stage 2 in the 2016 Tour de France is a 180 kilometres lead-up to a 3.1 kilometres closing climb in Cherbourg-Octeville. The steepest ramps are 14%, which is something a puncheur like Dan Martin must be thrilled about. (Slideshow route/profile)

As a bonus the winner is more than likely to take the yellow jersey. A few seconds at the top plus a times bonus at 10 seconds should be enough to dethrone the sprinter who powered to victory in stage 1.

Actually, the closing climb comes in three parts. First Côte de La Glacerie – 1.9 kilometres at 6.5% and a steepest section at 14% -, after which a slight 500 metres descent takes the riders to the last 700 metres at 5.7%.

Last year, La Grande Boucle brought two finishes on a short and steep ramp not unlike today’s. Stage 8 to the Mûr-de-Bretagne saw Alexis Vuillermoz outperform Dan Martin, Alejandro Valverde en Peter Sagan. In stage 3, finishing at the super-steep Wall of Huy, Joaquim Rodríguez climbed to victory ahead of Froome, Vuillermoz and Dan Martin.

Talking about the Wall of Huy. Obviously, the Ardennes hill has been the finish for the Fleche Wallone for years. It’s more or less Valverde-territory, as the Spaniard was the king of last three editions. This year he bested Julian Alaphilippe, Dan Martin and Wout Poels.

Favourites 2nd stage Tour de France 2016:

*** Alejandro Valverde, Julian Alaphilippe, Dan Martin, Joaquim Rodríguez
** Tony Gallopin, Alexis Vuillermoz, Michael Matthews, Peter Sagan
* Greg Van Avermaet, Wout Poels, Tom-Jelte Slager, Jan Bakelants

Tour de France 2016 stage 2: Route maps, height profiles, etc.

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