Wednesday, 20 July 2011

Stage 18 Preview

Tomorrow comes the Queen stage; the beginning of a two-part climax that will see determination and passion pushed to their limits as the GC rivals face off for an epic show down on the slopes of the Galibier. As the gruppetto struggle to simply survive, the battles will be fought and won over the next two days. Spirits and egos will be broken as much as bodies as the men are separated from the boys.

Starting in the Italian d├ębut town of Pinerolo, the peloton will travel 200.5km as they make their way over the Col Agnel and the Col d'Izoard before ascending the Galibier for the summit finish at the Hautes-Alpes resort of Serre-Chevalier.

With Alberto Contador appearing to have the psychological upper hand, all eyes will be on Andy Schleck to make the next move in their GC game of chess. But with Evans and Basso in the wings, there may be more to this battle than meets the eye. Fireworks are sure to come on the Galibier but if the fuse isn't lit at the right time, Voeckler may just steal the show all together.

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