• 09-13-2020
    TdF '20 Stage 16 Sep 15 Discussn Tread. Spoiler Alerts!
    TdF '20 Stage 16 Sep 15 Discussn Tread. Spoiler Alerts!

    Following a rest day, the Tour reaches the Alps! These are the final six stages, with Pairs on Sunday, and the time Trial the day before. But first, some mountains...

    Here, we have a 100-miler with a lot of sawtooth, including a major climb, Col de Porte, after 30 miles. This climb is about 9 miles, gaining nearly a thousand feet.

    Then, two more worthy climbs, before a more gentle 12 mile finish. There is a short but steep climb, a bit less than 2 miles, for the finish. This finish route is a small country / mountain road with no turns of note except for two, in the final quarter mile. If some, or all, GC contenders pace each other the entire route, this offers a bit of course for possibly gaining a few seconds over a rival.

    The stage starts out relatively flat (no categorized climbs!) for 30 miles, with sprint points at 25 miles. Green jersey competition has gotten pretty hot, so there will be handful fighting for these - mainly Sagan trying to dig himself out of the hole he dug for himself.

    We may likely see a breakaway allowed to get away, composed of riders who are not threatening the GC. We may have a solo stage winner attempt off the front. We may also likely see two, or three, groups after the breakaway group. After a breakaway group, there might be a GC contender group marking each other lest any bridge over to the breakaway, then a group of most riders, and then a group dedicated to taking it easy, recovering, pining away for sprint stages, resting up for the Time Trial, taking in the scenery, etc.

    For GC competition, Stage 15 produced time gaps, and defending 2019 winner Bernal has not yet quite had his best of days. Quintana lost some time - he has looked pretty steady but did not seem too sprightly on Stage 15. Pogacar has not shown much weakness. But he is not a sure thing; climbers seem ot either have a good day or not, and you just gotta watch for that day when they feel it. [Comments about doping go in doper thread.]

    So, we are getting what we often cry for: a tour where there is a great competition for GC going into the final week. We will see more GC time separation on this Stage! Lots could happen! Skip work!
  • 09-14-2020
    I also think we should get a break for the stage win. Now this is the day after a rest day and it's likely that someone in the GC will have a bad day as many times that happens right after a rest day.

    One other note, from what Quintana said, it does sound like the last crash has had some effects on him with issues sleeping and the injuries bothering him.
  • 09-15-2020
    yes, attacks plenty, off the front...
    yes, attacks plenty, off the front...

    and beyond that also seems to be going how i thought it might look.

    sad to see bernal having trouble. quintana is hanging in there.