2022 Tour de Romandie Prologue Preview

2022 Tour de Romandie Prologue Previewcyclingmole

Lausanne 5.2km ITT

A nice prologue to get the race started, one where the gaps should be very small.

Weather

The forecast suggests it will rain in the morning, but clear for the race starting in the afternoon.

Route

There are a couple of drags, but nothing that will worry a professional cyclist. More important than the gradients are the number of corners the riders must deal with, those with the best cornering skills will have a significant advantage over the rest.

The distance is also important, just 5.2km, which is perfect for those with track experience. The distance and technicality of the route has me leaning towards those who are good on the track.

Contenders

Ethan Hayter – he’s had a funny season so far, a crash in Provence seemed to knock his confidence and we’ve seen him hanging about the back of the bunch ever since. He did seem to recover a bit in Coppi Bartali, winning one stage and the points classification. Hayter is a brilliant on the track, he won silver in the recent Tokyo games in the omnium. If he’s going to win this stage, he needs to be confident going into the corners.

Luke Plapp – another very good track rider from Ineos. The young Aussie has enjoyed a fine start to his professional career, excelling in various terrain. He was part of the Aussie track program, winning bronze in the team pursuit in Tokyo. This is a route that looks good for him, you can forget about his result in the UAE TT, as that day he crashed during recon and had to use his road bike. 

Ethan Vernon – another excellent track rider, he’ll love the technical nature of the route. Sprinters often challenge in short TTs, Vernon has a decent chance of finishing in the top 5.

Geraint Thomas – he might have lost a little of his track grunt, but Thomas will still be up there challenging for the win. The number of corners probably goes against him, but I expect a fast time. 

Rohan Dennis – he starts as the bookies favourite to win the stage, but I’m not so sure. Of course, he’ll be up there challenging for the win, but much of his recent training has focused on preparing for the mountains. I think he could find himself a little off the top spot.

Remi Cavagna – he’s got a good chance of taking the win, but he needs to corner well. He doesn’t win many TTs, but he’ll start this stage with confidence.

Josef Černy – another who’s a strong contender for the top 10, top 5 on a good day. 

Prediction Time

I think we’ll see one of the Ineos track boys taking the win, but which one to choose? I’ll go with Luke Plapp.

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