Friday, 22 July 2011

Stage 19 Preview

At 109 km, today's stage is compact but tough. There are just 30km of climbs but these include two of the biggest climbs in the Tour. First ascending the Col du Telegraph, the peloton will head to the much harder northern route across the Col du Galibier before a long descent to the sprint as they approach the Alpe-D'Huez.

After yesterdays mass gruppeto found themselves just outside the cut off time, they will want to ensure they dont risk the same happening today. With deductions of points in the sprinters Green Jersey competition, the lead of Mark Cavendish is now within reach once more for Rojas and Gilbert. With Gilbert being known for his courage, Cavendish will have to watch his back today to ensure he can rebuff any arrows that may come sailing from the Belgian rider towards his Maillot Vert lead.

Following the fireworks lit on the Col d'Izoard we can be sure that Evans and Contador will be on the look out to utilise any opportunity they can to take back time lost yesterday but with just 15 seconds now between A.Schleck and Maillot Jaune leader Thomas Voeckler, we can be sure that Andy will be ready to counter attack any move they make. Tonight the Maillot Jaune will be on new shoulders as Voeckler, exhausted from yesterdays brave defence, will relinquish the jersey, willingly, gladly, knowing he did his duty and defended it right to the end.

If all goes to the plan of Leopard Trek, Andy will wear the most hallowed of the Tour Jerseys tonight and will win the Tour on the slopes of the climbers mecca: Alpe D'Huez.

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