The rides travel 208km from Tienen to Geraardsbergen.
1.Muur van Geraardsbergen – 1.1km at 9.3%
2.Bosberg – 1.35km at 5%
3.Denderoordberg – 0.7km at 8%
4.Hurdumont/La Houppe – 0.6km at 9.5%
5.Tenbosse – 0.45km at 6.9%
6.Eikenmolen – 0.61km at 5.9%
7.Onkerzelestraat – no exact figures but steep!
The finishing climb is brutal,it’s steep,narrow and cobbled!It was used near the end of the Tour of Flanders from 1988 until 2011.The route has now changed and it doesn’t feature in Flanders.
Philippe Gilbert has had to withdraw from the race due to his fall today,so the stage is wide open!
Looking at the form from stage 6,Stybar has to be a big favourite.He is riding for the GC and was extremely quick at the finish in stage 6.
The last stage in 2012 finished on the same climb and a 9 man break made it to the end with Ballan winning,Boom 2nd and Ventoso 3rd.It meant that Boom won the overall.
The stage isn’t as hard as stage 6 and I feel that tactics will play a massive part in shaping the race.Will OPQS send Chavanel up the road,so they won’t have to work?
Can Boom recover from a poor performance today to do as well as last year?
Will Iklinskiy be allowed to go for the stage,instead of protecting Grivko?
There are far too many questions and not enough answers,so I’m not betting just now.
Keep a look out for my tweets as I might go in-play.