The 1st cat climb is 8.5km at 7.7%.It looks very difficult and will thin out the field considerably.We should see a very small peloton reach the top of this climb and having teammates will be crucial.We then have an 11km descent before immediately hitting the final climb.
I wouldn’t expect any serious action until the final 7km.The start of the climb is fairly easy and then we have the downhill section.
The final 7km has an average gradient of around 9%,with sections of 18%.This will create some serious time gaps and expect some big names to suffer.
Daniel Moreno is now in the red jersey and Katusha have to defend.It’s not an easy stage to do so and I fully expect a big break to be allowed away and take the stage.
I’m unsure how the other teams will approach the stage tactically.Both Movistar and Astana have looked strong and have many riders capable of helping their team leader.Will they try and launch an attack on the cat 1 climb?Probably not,I would think that the main action will happen in the last 7km.
Who will Katusha be riding for?
Looking at their team,I think they’ll just have Moreno and Rodriguez left when we hit the final 7km.If an attack goes who will bring it back?I think that Moreno looks their better option for the GC,but we’ll have to wait and see.
Kreuziger – 1 point e/w at 125/1
Mate – 1 point e/w at 150/1
Txurruka – 0.5 points e/w at 50/1
Anton – 1 point at 22/1
Kreuziger had said that he would focus on a stage win and he finished stage 9 2nd from last,at over 17 minutes down.It seems to me that he lost time so he will be allowed in the morning break,this stage looks perfect for him.
Mate is a local rider and he promised to attack in stage 8,9 or 10.He didn’t attack in stages 8 or 9,so I hope he’s good on his word and gets in the break.
I have Txurruka for the KOTM jersey.I would hope he gets in the break to claim the cat 1 points and then continues on till the finish.
Anton has spoken about the last climb and he likes it.If the race comes back together look for him to try and steal the stage.