Thursday, July 11, 2013

Stage 13 Preview and Profile 2013 Tour De France

Stage 13 on the map
Stage 13 is another flat, southeasterly route, that will take the riders from Tours to Saint-Amand-Montrond over 173 kilometers. On the way they will top one category-four climb, but the more important hill will be the uncategorized one that comes just a few kms before the finish. A strong puncheur may try an attack there. The sprinters teams will again work to get their men into a bunch sprint.

Stage 13 Profile

Stage 13 continues southeast
Marcel Kittel now has three stage wins and is looking like the fastest man to beat in this year’s sprint stages. Peter Sagan has got a stranglehold on the green jersey, but would surely like another stage win. 

André Greipel’s team was blown to pieces in the late stage-11 crash, and Mark Cavendish has not had enough good lead-outs to show his best stuff.

I can’t find specs on that little hill at the end, but its descent looks like it could be steep and maybe technical, though it can’t be more than a kilometer long or so. 

The last 5k are pancake flat to the finish line. I think the sprinters’ teams will arrive there in charge, up front, and prevent others from coming around.

That hill could possibly spoil some sprinters’ hopes at the end, but we will have to see what kind of effect it really has when they get there. 

I would think it is a good launch pad for Peter Sagan, or maybe Juan Antonio Flecha or Sylvain Chavanel will have another go. But an attack on a small slope like that will not have much opportunity to build a big lead for the flat run in to the finish.

MY PICK: Peter Sagan

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