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Also running: Italian Grand Prix Part II
Predict who is going to win each stage of the Tour.
This table/chart is RaChart™ compatible and was created with Giveaways Table/Chart Creator
Postponed because of Covid-19; things are still iffy, obviously. Important new rules; any rider testing positively will be removed from the race immediately. If two of a team's personnel (riders or otherwise) test positive for the disease then the entire team is removed from the competition. This could obviously be huge; having the Yellow Jersey and then being sent home because a mechanic and a cook have Covid-19 will sting.
The teams are unhappy with this rule and have complained to the ASO. Edit: the UCI (and not the ASO) has changed the rule: now a team is only ejected if two riders test positive within 7 days of each other. Personnel testing positive is no longer relevant (though those people obviously still need to leave). Edit 2: The French government has put their foot down and the original rule is back in effect.
Today, the 27th of August, Covid cases are rising sharply in France, 21 departments are now at code red. The chances of the Tour being changed, shortened, or cancelled are unfortunately increasing. Journalists are even speculating that teams might want to fight harder the first week to gain the yellow jersey should the Tour be stopped before the three weeks are up.
Another tour designed for the climbers; 29 ascents of the top three categories in total (only five uphill finishes but more climbing kilometres than ever in recent history). There's not even a flat time trial this year, and no team time trial at all; we have to go way back in time for a Tour more suited to time trialists. All done for Romain Bardet again? Unfortunately for the French, he isn't going to win this year either.
This year the organisation has been looking for some new ascents so there will be some mountains included that the riders are less familiar with. One example is the Col de la Loze, the 'roof; of this year's Tour (2,304 metres); only last year was the trail there turned into a proper road, making it possible to go there. It also means we'll be spending more time in nice places like the Jura, Corrèze, and Vosges.
Back from 2018 is Plateau des Glières; part of the descent is a dirt road where Froome got a puncture last time.
Also see the PEZ Preview.
The Tour Touristique bits are mostly from the Tour site (recognizable by the appalling command of the English language) and Wikipedia.
Official Site (Also available in German now, I noticed. Their English is still as bad as ever.)
A better list of riders than the official site, with thanks to bartwu
General Classification (abbreviated as GC)
This is the one it's all about, who will bring the maillot jaune (yellow jersey) to Paris?
Well, this Tour will be all about the Team Ineos vs Team Jumbo-Visma battle. I can't see the winner coming from any but one of these teams.
King of the Mountain (often abbreviated as KoM)
The maillot a pois (polka dot jersey) goes to the best climber; who will it be this year? Obviously the GC riders will all feature in this classification but there are some others...
It's definitely not a Tour for a lot of sprint victories and many teams have not even brought one. Not all flat stages will be contested by them but there's still a number of stage that should end in a bunch sprint.
Feel free to leave your predictions for jersey winners and other speculations in the comments below.
Normally I'd be saying Peter Sagan (as I do every year) but we have a really weird Tour this year. I'd love to hear your predictions for this category.
The longest stage this year, Chauvigny to Sarran (218 km), is the shortest ever longest stage in Tour history.
The North of France is ignored completely this year; see the map.
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Third time's the charm! Marc Hirschi has been so impressive this Tour and he finally gets what he deserves. Amazing, he's only just 22 and takes his first professional win of his career in nothing less than the biggest race in cycling. We're gonna see a lot more of him, I'm sure. I wouldn't even be surprised if he won another stage this Tour.
Incredibly tough stage tomorrow; I'm prediciting loads of riders won't make it within the time limit (so the jury will extend it).
Really, the other day he was amazing, despite failing to win, and now a similar performance. It's so impressive to see him gain tme and defend it against quality chasers, today I was calling him "the new Evenepoel" :))
It's amazing how many young talents are in cycling these days; on the one hand it's sad for them cause with so many great riders no one is probably going to gain a large number victories. I wonder if we'll ever get another rider to win all five monuments. Mathieu and Wout have the talent for it but you need some luck as well.
Hirschi has already won the U23 Wold Championship and the U23 European Championship (both in 2018), so he was known as a talented rider :)
Yeah absolutely, he's not coming out of nowhere, but currently there are so many very young, very talented riders emerging that it's easy to lose track of them. I can say that 2 weeks ago I was barely aware of Hirschi, now I definitely am ;)
Max Schachmann looked good for the victory for a long time and I would have been happy for him to win it. Bora must be mad that they couldn't grab it with two guys there at the final km. But Daniel Martínez was cleary the strongest at the end; Colombian mountain power. The first win for EF in ages.
The GC guys finally got going at the end and we have some major shakeups with French hopes Martin and Bardet dropping out of the top 10. Bernal looked completely powerless at the end, is it a temporary setback? For now it looks like it will be Pogačar who will attack the yellow jersey. With Colombians at places 3, 4, 5, and 6 behind him.
I am so bummed that Bauke Mollema is out with possibly a broken wrist. He was doing good in the GC and he's always best in the third week of the grand tours. This could have been such a good year for him.
So far Primo Rigoz and Ted Poga, are um level ahead others contenders (or maybe two) Ineos are no longer the boogeyman team
Søren Kragh Andersen got so much distance on everyone else that last one and a half kilometre, amazing!
They said the final stretch today was like Milan-Sanremo and they were right. I expected someone to really go for it on the second to last col but it didn't materialise. Team Sunweb really was the team of the day, starting with the weird stuff at the start of the stage, which they explained was a mistake. But at the end, lauching one rider after the other, as soon as the previous one was caught; that's some strategy.
Tomorrow we finish on top of the Grand Colombier!
Thomas De Gendt has put his legs up for sale
What a day! I did not expect losses this big...
Tadej Pogačar shows once again he is the only other contender for yellow this year. A lot can happen in the final week though and the time differences aren't super big.
Not a good day for two of the Colombians. It's really suprising how far Bernal and Quintana dropped in a stage that should be better suited for them then any we've had so far.
Rest day tomorrow and then a pretty nasty stage!
Can't help but mention that Mathieu finally got a victory today as well. :)
Poor Bernal, his Tour is OVER!! Now is GO Pogačar GO!!!
Poor Higuita. I'm not sure if Jungels should be punished for that crash...
Yeah, Jungels really should have paid attention, I do think there should be a penalty for that.
I thought Bernal was going to improve drastically in the 2nd and 3rd week, instead he cracked big time. Totally unexpected !!
A few days ago he got close and today Lennard Kämna takes a beautiful and deserved victory, showcasing his time trial skills. He left Carapaz in the dust and was ahead in no time. I wonder if Team Sunweb regrets him going to Bora, who will be very happy with some real success after all their earlier attempts.
Among the GC contenders Miguel Angel Lopez tried it at the very end after Pogačar couldn't get away but to no avail. Bernal definitely fell through; I wonder what's going on, at this point it seems less likely he'll make it to Paris.
Tomorrow we'll see then entire top 14 of the GC battle it out on two HC mountains!
Kamna was really impressive, I remember him as junior world champ but I thought it was much further in the past, instead he's only 24, another guy for this golden generation!
RE Bernal, I don't understand if he is ill (he doesn't look well) or if he decided to save as much energy as possible to try something in the coming days.
When Kämna managed to seprerate from Carapaz, my mind flashed back to Hirschi and his win. Both having come so close before and then managing to win their next try.
W/r/t Bernal, this NBCsports article mentions him being injured. I read about it somewhere else too, but don't remember where exactly right now.
Though in my opionion he would be better served to just abandon the Tour, if he's injured badly enough to have such a hard time. Let the other guys in his team take their chances and get healthy, because his Tour is ruined regardless of him reaching Paris or not. I don't see him getting a stage win tomorrow or in the next few days, so why risk delaying the healing progress.
He will go probably in a breakaway for stage win
It's amazing what a last kilometre can do. :p
Miguel Ángel López surprisingly takes the win and gains back a few seconds on Primož but he, in turn, wins time on all the others.
Tomorrow another hefty stage but it should be even harder to make up time there. It seems likely that Saturday's time trial will be the only real way for big changes to happen.
Above 2,000 m and it's Colombian territory ;). We weren't the only ones who saw Pogacar slightly better than Roglic, looks like Primoz has the Tour in his hands instead.
This sure was one of the stranger stages in recent history.
Michal Kwiatkowski would definitely have beat Richard Carapaz in an actual sprint but was this finish a nice gesture or should it have been an actual battle?
I did think at least one GC guy would lose some time today but it turned out the Tour has been a few days too long for a number of them. Yates was the biggest surprise for me.
Tomorrow no mountains and then Saturday the final (and only) time trial!
Polkadot jersey for Carapaz, stage win for Kwiatkowski - a fair deal and a good day for Ineos :)
It was very strange indeed, I normally hate these kind of finishes, but for some reasons that I don't fully grasp , today I thought it was the good decision, Carapaz deserved it for his efforts , but Kwiato ha pulled a lot today and is a long time elite domestique for the team.
And we are talking about Sky/Ineos , a team that I've always disliked with a passion, what's gotten into me today :D??
Yeah, I know what you mean...
It's weird, they lost Bernal and celebrate today like they won the GC.
I only just got home but was able to (mostly) see the last 15 km or so. Another amazing win by Søren Kragh Andersen! The others just looked at each other and by then he was gone. Another powerful solo and it was three victories for Team Sunweb.
I cannot believe what I just saw!!
I'm now curious if tomorrow he tries to grab the green jersey too :D
I'm glad I could witness. SUPER TED
Unless you are poor Roglic, that was probably the most epic TT in ages! I was left standing in front of the TV amazed and speechless, the looks on Tom D and WvA 's faces when Pogacar was finishing said it all...
Bennet was without equal today and gave his green jersey some extra polish.
1st 🇸🇮 Slovenian to win @LeTour
1st rider to dominate the overall, KOM and Best Young Rider standings in the same edition
1st rookie to win overall since 1983
Youngest winner since 1904
wrote history on #TDF2020