Tour de France 2024 Favourites stage 4: GC clash on the Galibier

Tadej Pogacar - Tour de France 2024 Favourites stage 4: Downhill from the Galibierfoto: Cor VosClassics or climbers? Given how eagerly the current generation of cycling super stars races, especially Tadej Pogacar, you'd expect them to go all out in the race over the Galibier with a downhill finish to Valloire. So yes, we anticipate a clash among GC riders. (Slideshow route/profile)

For Pogacar, it’s also tactically wise to put his GC rivals under pressure this early in the race. He did it on the San Luca climb in stage 2, and Vingegaard followed him like a shadow, while Carapaz and Evenepoel caught up with them just before the finish line. So, no time earned, but then again, why not do the same in the high mountains!?

Pogacar is on fire this season. He emerged as the big winner in the Giro (six stage wins and the overall victory). Moreover, he’s known to be the most eager of the bunch, so why not set the Tour de France on fire early on? Undoubtedly, there are team directors who want to temper him with the line: “Paris is still far away, conserve your energy, lad,” to which Pogacar would likely counter: “We finish in Nice this year, boss. Can I just race now?”

That being said, the climbs in the 4th stage aren’t excessively tough. They are extremely long, though. Right from the start, the road slopes gently upwards and climbs for 39.9 kilometres to Sestrière (average gradient of 3.7%). Immediately after the descent, the riders tackle the Col de Montgenèvre, an 8.3 kilometres climb at 5.9%. The race is halfway at the top.

After descending to Briançon, the road climbs again for several kilometres before continuing onto the Col du Galibier. That’s a 23 kilometres toil with an average gradient of 5.1%. From the top, riders descend for 18.9 kilometres to Valloire.

Sure, it’s also a great route for a successful attack… But we would love Pogacar to raise hell on the Galibier… Go for it, Tadej, there are extra time bonuses up for grabs at the summit… Perhaps the wish is the father of our thought…

In short, it’s difficult to predict how the race will unfold. Nevertheless, we’re betting on a battle among the GC riders, with Pogacar as the main instigator. And yes, all those other contenders for the yellow jersey will have to go along, whether they like it or not.

Favourites 4th stage 2024 Tour de France

*** Tadej Pogacar, Primoz Roglic, Remco Evenepoel
** Richard Carapaz, Pello Bilbao, Jonas Vingegaard, João Almeida
* Matej Mohoric, Wout Poels, Jesús Herrada, Derek Gee, David Gaudu, Lenny Martinez

Another interesting read: route 4th stage 2024 Tour de France.

Tour de France 2024 stage 4: route, profiles, video

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