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Tour De France Stage 3 Preview: Sprinters Take Center Stage

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Tour De France Stage 3 Preview: Sprinters Take Center Stage

Monday, July 3 – Amorebieta-Etxano to Bayonne (193.5km)

(CTN News) – In this year’s edition, the Tour de France will cross from the Basque Country into France for the first time for the first time in its history.

The stage profile is jagged, with a gradual easing as the day progresses. It is expected that American Neilson Powless (EF Education-EasyPost) will be going out on the attack (again) on the Category 3 Côte de Trabakua in Amorebieta-Etxano on Sunday in order to defend and possibly extend his lead in the Tour De France King of the Mountains contest.

The climb begins in Amorebieta-Etxano with the climbing beginning right away.

There are also seven points to be gained from the four categorized climbs spread throughout the first half of the stage, which makes it well worth the gamble.

This year’s Tour De France of Flanders will see the riders summit the final categorized climb, the Category 3 Côte d’Orioko Benta, with about 90km left to race, which is why we anticipate that this stage will be the first in the race to end in a sprint finish this year.

Although it is likely to be a close race: there is an uncategorized hill about 20km from the finish line in Bayonne, where an attack could be launched from.

It is possible that teams that wish to eliminate the Tour’s pure sprinters might try and do so here. A number of roundabouts will be located between about 5km- and 2km-to-go before the finish in Bayonne, making the run-in to the finish a bit tight.

Two kilometres from the finish line, the riders take a right-hand turn 180 degrees as they loop under and then up onto the avenue that will take them to the finish line, where they will finish.

It will be a fast run-in for the race, as the road descends towards the 1 km to go banner before rising in the final 500 meters as it approaches the finish line.

I think the weather will be perfect: mostly sunny with highs in the upper 70’s, as well as a slight headwind to assist the sprinters’ teams to stay together during the last 20 kilometers of the race.

There are some riders to watch out for

The sprinters should have a front and center place at the end of Stage 3 in Bayonne after two days of intense racing in which the Tour De France overall contenders had to compete at their best.

If no one gets dropped, Mark Cavendish (Astana) should have his first chance of breaking the record for the most stage wins in Tour De France history.

The Netherlands’ Fabio Jakobsen (Soudal-Quick Step) and Dylan Groenewegen (Team Jayco AlUla) as well as the Australians Caleb Ewan (Destny Lotto) and the Belgian Jasper Philipsen (Alpecin-Deceuninck) are all attempting to stop him from making history.

Nevertheless, if this riders have a hard time in the finale, one of the Tour De France more versatile sprinters will be the one to win the stage.

There are a number of contenders for the stage in Bayonne, including Belgian Wout van Aert (Jumbo-Visma), Eritrea’s Biniam Girmay (Intermarché-Circus-Wanty), Denmark’s Mad Pedersen (Lidl-Trek), and Norway’s Alexander Kristoff (Uno-X).

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