The 7th stage adds up to 249 kilometres. The first 150 kilometres are played out on flat to undulating roads and then the profile changes dramatically. In fact, one could argue that the riders enter Liège-Bastogne-Liège in the last 100 kilometres.
Probably, the Signal d’Uchon will play a crucial role. The climb is 5.7 kilometres long and the average gradient sits at 5.7%.
The Signal d’Uchon is highly irregular and the last part in particular is very steep. Almost 2 kilometres before the summit the riders come down a short drop to enter the hardest bit. The average gradient goes up to 11% and the ultimate 700 metres rise at 13.1%.
The riders crest the decisive ascent with 18 kilometres to go before the Côte de la Gourloye presents the last obstacle of the day. The 2.4 kilometres at 5.3% climbs is fairly straighforward.
Pure sprinters crack on the steep slopes, but the likes of Van der Poel should be able to hold on. If so, a decimated peloton is likely to charge toward a sprint finish in Le Creusot.
Another option is a successful late attack in which the rider(s) manage(s) to keep the peloton at distance. More or less the Marc Hirschi approach in last year’s Sarran stage. Whatever the outcome, the 7th stage should see a thrilling finale.
If no team is interested in bringing back the breakaway, the attackers could also ride to glory. Which is a less likely scenario, because the Tour de France is still young and the yellow jersey could be at stake.
How the race unfolds depends on the GC. We’ll update this article during the Tour de france.
Favourites stage 7 Tour de France 2021
*** Mathieu van der Poel, Julian Alaphilippe, Matej Mohoric, Wout Van Aert
** Søren Kragh Andersen, Kasper Asgreen, Tiesj Benoot, Jakob Fuglsang, Sonny Colbrelli
* Michael Matthews, Marc Hirschi, Peter Sagan, Philippe Gilbert, Christophe Laporte
Another interesting read: route 7th stage 2021 Tour de France.
Tour de France 2021 stage 7: profiles & finish route
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