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TdF official thread: Stage 3 Marseille-Grand Motte (196.0km)

Jun 22, 2009
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Two small climbs and three sprints - the breakaway will, no doubt, be caught in the last 10 kms. All sorts of 'sprinters' will then unsuccessfully attempt to prevent Cav from winning again.
 
May 14, 2009
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No, it will depend of the weather. It can be windy so a lot of bordures could happen. The forecast gives a 20-25 NW wind.
 
Jun 16, 2009
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Guess for second in Sprints?

We already know who is going to win into L a Grrande Motte... CAV. We should guess for second place. Bert Grabsch and Eisel did great work chasing and reduced the gap quickly. Tylar Farrar looked pretty good. Even if Cavendish doesnt try for green intentionally he will still win it as he will win lots of stages unintentionally. I was actually hoping for a more grand sprint. I was hoping to see Boonen, Friere, Steegmans, Napoilitano, Haussler, etc. iT wasn't a great sprint to watch as nearly all the riders got caught behind or went off course and 2 columbia boys lead out Cav with Farrar on his wheel. It was a bit unfortunate because i wanted to see Boonen and Ciolek have a real crack at it:(. Hopefully today's stage is better. It will definetly be a sprint but will Columbia be so willing to do all the chasing? My tip yesterday was Ciolek but i will have to go for Cav for today's stage.
 
Mar 16, 2009
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Its just appetizers, even if they are good tasty, and yummy, these stages are just setting the table...

My prediction, there is almost always a crash in the first week that takes someone out of the running for GC...

Cav looks strong. Farrar had a nice ride, bot enough octane in the fuel there, but nice to see that if a mistake is made by Cav, farrar can be right there.

I love this route. South to North. Even though I love Brettany I hate watching the racing there.
 
Mar 10, 2009
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Koldo could be hurting the next couple of days. He was the Euskadi-Euskatel rider who crashed inside the 1k:

Declaraciones de Koldo Fernández de Larrea:
"La verdad es que no he tenido mucha suerte en la primera etapa del Tour de Francia que disputo en mi vida. Las sensaciones durante el día han sido buenas y estaba motivado para entrar al sprint. Soy consciente de que coger la rueda de Cavendish es practicamente imposible, por lo que he optado por seguir la estela de Hushovd. Es rápido y tiene una escuadra que trabaja bien las llegadas. Cuando iba a su rueda e íbamos ganando posiciones, a unos 900 metros de la línea de llegada ha debido de haber un frenazo y he hecho el afilador con el noruego. No sé cuantos nos hemos caido, en ese momento no pensaba en nada. Tengo heridas en muslo, cadera, hombro y biceps izquierdos, además de un golpe en la parte superior del costillar izquierdo. Ahora solo quiero estar tranquilo y ver como evoluciona el golpe".
 
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auscyclefan94 said:
We already know who is going to win into L a Grrande Motte... CAV. We should guess for second place. Bert Grabsch and Eisel did great work chasing and reduced the gap quickly. Tylar Farrar looked pretty good. Even if Cavendish doesnt try for green intentionally he will still win it as he will win lots of stages unintentionally. I was actually hoping for a more grand sprint. I was hoping to see Boonen, Friere, Steegmans, Napoilitano, Haussler, etc. iT wasn't a great sprint to watch as nearly all the riders got caught behind or went off course and 2 columbia boys lead out Cav with Farrar on his wheel. It was a bit unfortunate because i wanted to see Boonen and Ciolek have a real crack at it:(. Hopefully today's stage is better. It will definetly be a sprint but will Columbia be so willing to do all the chasing? My tip yesterday was Ciolek but i will have to go for Cav for today's stage.

Seeing that you are a Cadel Evans fan also, I have to say that Ciolek's chances have improved significantly because of your switch.
 
Jul 4, 2009
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Weather today should be in high 20s, sunny, low humidity with a pretty stiff 30-40kph cross head wind. Good conditions for a break.
 
BroDeal said:
The big teams with GC contenders or a shot at winning the TTT will want an easy day, so it is ideal for a break.

Except that Garmin want to put Wiggins in yellow after the TTT.

I don't think any of the GC teams, or the sprinter teams will let a break go the distance today.
 
Apr 3, 2009
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Timmy-loves-Rabo said:
If not then Boonen is my guy for tonight.
Maybe Van Avermaet can get amongst it too...
It wouldn't surprise me if Quickstep and Silence decide to tear apart the peloton with this headwind, for Boonen to drop Cavendish and for Evans to eliminate a few GC contenders that are not used to this kind of Classics style racing (isn't it Menchov? :D). But on the other hand, I doubt Columbia will drop their guard today.
 
May 26, 2009
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Jasper said:
It wouldn't surprise me if Quickstep and Silence decide to tear apart the peloton with this headwind, for Boonen to drop Cavendish and for Evans to eliminate a few GC contenders that are not used to this kind of Classics style racing (isn't it Menchov? :D). But on the other hand, I doubt Columbia will drop their guard today.

Except that SL doesn't really have the firepower to tear the peloton apart. Saxo+Astana could do it to eliminate a few contenders but I don't think Bruyneel is able to do something like that. Maybe Saxo + a few other teams will try to eliminate one or two Astana's if they see one of them hanging near the back of the pack. I would however think that all teams are prepared for something like that but you never know.
 
Four out front with a lead already of 11:15. The constituents of the break are Maxime Bouet (FdJ), Samuel Demoulin (Cofidis), Ruben Perez Moreno (Euskaltel) and Koen de Koert (Skil-Shimano). Sometimes the first hour is fast as there is a big battle to get into the break. Not today though with the bunch maybe averaging less than 20mph in the Mediterranean heat.
 
Animal said:
Except that Garmin want to put Wiggins in yellow after the TTT.

I don't think any of the GC teams, or the sprinter teams will let a break go the distance today.

The teams will play chicken with each other, trying to get others to chase. Ultimately the break will probably be caught, but the GC teams would rather have a team like QS do a lot of the work.

Columbia is in a bad position. They have a good shot at the TTT but Cav has a great chance if it comes down to a sprint. If I were them I think I would bet on Cav because his chances of winning today's sprint is likely higher than the team's chance of winning the TTT.
 
Jun 22, 2009
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Maarten Ducrot just said on Dutch tv that Milram are 'hoping' to beat Cav (much mirth behind the microphones) while Quickstep have 'a plan' for dealing with Cav. :D

They wouldn't tell him what, though. Aww. He speculated that they would try to disrupt the Renshaw-Hincapie train before the actual sprint starts. A sub-plot to look forward to today.
 
Amsterhammer said:
Maarten Ducrot just said on Dutch tv that Milram are 'hoping' to beat Cav (much mirth behind the microphones) while Quickstep have 'a plan' for dealing with Cav. :D

They wouldn't tell him what, though. Aww. He speculated that they would try to disrupt the Renshaw-Hincapie train before the actual sprint starts. A sub-plot to look forward to today.

There are only two ways to defeat Cavendish in a normal sprint: a) a long, powerful sprint which surprises Mark, like Haussler at MSR or Petacchi at Giro; b) taking advantage of crazy final meters and a short stretch final.

If Milram tries to win with Ciolek in the Cav's way... well. 2% options, Cavendish is too strong.
 
Jun 9, 2009
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still at 11+ min with 110 km to go the bunch still doesn't look interested if they are gonna chase we will start to see something soon