The Queen Stage is unchanged from previous years. Starting in McLaren Vale it winds its way through enchanting seaside locales of Port Willunga and Aldinga. This section is part of the first of two circuits. The first one is raced three times and takes in a 8 kilometres section along the coast. There’s always a threat of teams blowing the race apart in the cross winds, although it never happened.
The second circuit is om the menu twice. It is centered around Willunga Hill, a 3 kilometres climb at 7%. The summit is crested for the first time with 22.4 kilometres left before it’s all systems go in the puncher’s dream of a finale. Title holder Richie Porte is imperious on this stage and has dominated Willunga Hill the last four years.
Two intermediate sprints – at kilometres 63.4 and at kilometre 103.4 – come with 3, 2 and 1 seconds each, while the first three riders on the line take time bonuses of 10, 6 and 4 seconds.
Tour Down Under 2018 stage 5: Route maps, height profiles, and more
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McLaren Vale and Willunga Hill at Google maps
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