San Benedetto del Tronto > San Benedetto del Tronto 155.9km
The final stage is normally one for the sprinters, but the organisers have made the opening half harder this year, which will give some hope for the breakaway riders. The problem is the 80km of flat to finish the day, you’ll need some big engines in the break to hold off a charging peloton.
A sunny end to the week and not too much wind.
It’s a tricky start, one with plenty of chances for a strong break to form, but will this happen with so many teams wanting a sprint?
Same as last year with things getting complicated inside the final 2km. There’s a narrowing in the road for the roundabout which comes just before the flamme rouge, which is quickly followed by a double turn, before a finishing straight of 800m. Last year’s finish was chaos, I expect something similar this year.
Who wants to test themselves in the morning break? With so many teams wanting a sprint, a lot of attackers will be put off from even trying, but the start is good for those who are brave enough to go for it. What catches my eye is the final climb of 8.5km at 4.4%, there Is a chance a team lifts the pace to try and drop some of the fast men.
The organisers have done a good job with this stage. The break has a chance, the climbing sprinters have a chance, and the sprinters have a chance. The size and composition of the break will determine if it’s got a chance or not, it will need to be relatively big with so many sprint teams at the race. The fact this stage can go one of three ways makes it a good one to watch.
Jasper Philipsen – it’s a perfect stage for Philipsen. He’s sprinting well, and he climbs better than most sprinters, so the opening shouldn’t worry him. With van der Poel in the train, he’s bound to start the sprint from a good position, which makes him hard to beat.
Fabio Jakobsen – has one win to his name, but he’ll want another. He could be vulnerable if someone lifts the pace on the final climb, he’ll be hoping it doesn’t happen and it’s an easy day in the saddle. His sprint train is excellent, if it’s a big sprint, he’ll be confident of winning.
Dylan Groenewegen – doesn’t have a win yet this week, that’s something he’ll be determined to put right in this stage. The sprint train hasn’t fired properly yet, Jayco will be hoping to nail it in this stage. Just like Jakobsen, he’s vulnerable if someone decides to race the final climb.
Biniam Girmay – I hope Intermarché hit the climb hard, it will significantly increase Girmay’s chances of taking a win. The problem will be Philipsen, but if Teunissen can deliver a perfect lead out, Girmay does have a chance of beating him, especially after a tough week of racing.
Edward Theuns – the double corner at the finish reminds me of the old Ardooie finish in the Eneco Tour, it screams late attack. If a brave rider can attack through this point, it’s possible to get a gap and disappoint those who want a sprint. Eddie is the type of rider who can pull this off.
Wout Van Aert – he got a good ride in the legs today; I don’t see why he won’t give it a go in this stage. His team won’t want a big sprint, they are one who’ll have an interest in making the first half of the stage as hard as possible. Since joining the team in 2019, he’s won a stage in every stage race he’s done, and he’s not won yet this week…
Quinn Simmons – breakaway hopeful number 1.
Mads Würtz Schmidt – breakaway hopeful number 2.
Alessandro Covi – breakaway hopeful number 3.
With the race for the blue jersey now over, and with three stage wins in the bag, it’s time for Jumbo-Visma to show off.
They’ll make it a hard race and Wout Van Aert will take the win.
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