Tour de France 2020 | Stage 2 (Nice Haut Pays - Nice, 186 km)

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Really hard stage on paper but I think there will be a big peloton arriving at the foot of the final climb.
Anyway, the first two climbs are still gonna be cool to watch as there'll be that constant threat of a gc rider just having a bad day or suffering from yesterday, plus there is already gonna be a lot of fighting for mountain points. If the stage doesn't go to a break, which I hope, the finale could also be quite exciting. Alaphilippe is probably the favorite here but it's actually one of those weird cases where I think, if the pure climbers actually went for it and tried to drop the puncheurs, they could absolutely do it. I just don't think any gc contender will be confident enough to actually try.
 
Really hard stage on paper but I think there will be a big peloton arriving at the foot of the final climb.
Anyway, the first two climbs are still gonna be cool to watch as there'll be that constant threat of a gc rider just having a bad day or suffering from yesterday, plus there is already gonna be a lot of fighting for mountain points. If the stage doesn't go to a break, which I hope, the finale could also be quite exciting. Alaphilippe is probably the favorite here but it's actually one of those weird cases where I think, if the pure climbers actually went for it and tried to drop the puncheurs, they could absolutely do it. I just don't think any gc contender will be confident enough to actually try.
You need some pace to push GC riders on bad days to make them bonk though. Ultimately I think there's an upper limit to how slow they'll do the climbs cause otherwise the breakaway will get too much leeway.

I can see the first hour being crazy.
 
You need some pace to push GC riders on bad days to make them bonk though. Ultimately I think there's an upper limit to how slow they'll do the climbs cause otherwise the breakaway will get too much leeway.

I can see the first hour being crazy.
I already made a similar point in todays stage thread so I'll make it again. In the Tour the teams don't usually do that sort of stuff based on whether there is an actual chance of a gc rider bonking, they just don't do it at all.

I can still remember Froome crashing on the penultimate mountain stage in 2016, him then suffering on the final climb and losing time for the first time in that race. There was a really hard mountain stage to come on the next day and there was serious speculation that Froome might lose the race last minute if he's hurt. So that final mountain stage came and every single team just watched Ian f*cking Stannard lead the peloton over the first two climbs and in the end not a single attack by a rider from the top 10. Most likely it wouldn't have mattered anyway but I still find it absurd that to this day we don't know whether Froome was affected by that crash because nobody even tried to find out.

I agree that the pace probably won't be so low that there will be a 150 men peloton on the Turini but I can totally see a group of, say, over 50 guys there. Now if someones condition is absolutely horrendous he could therefore still drop but if you are hurt from a crash or that sort of stuff you can usually just bite on your teeth go closer to your limit than you would usually like to and still remain in the peloton. It will take a proper effort to genuinely expose weaknesses and I'm unsure whether a team will make that.
 
I already made a similar point in todays stage thread so I'll make it again. In the Tour the teams don't usually do that sort of stuff based on whether there is an actual chance of a gc rider bonking, they just don't do it at all.

I can still remember Froome crashing on the penultimate mountain stage in 2016, him then suffering on the final climb and losing time for the first time in that race. There was a really hard mountain stage to come on the next day and there was serious speculation that Froome might lose the race last minute if he's hurt. So that final mountain stage came and every single team just watched Ian f*cking Stannard lead the peloton over the first two climbs and in the end not a single attack by a rider from the top 10. Most likely it wouldn't have mattered anyway but I still find it absurd that to this day we don't know whether Froome was affected by that crash because nobody even tried to find out.

I agree that the pace probably won't be so low that there will be a 150 men peloton on the Turini but I can totally see a group of, say, over 50 guys there. Now if someones condition is absolutely horrendous he could therefore still drop but if you are hurt from a crash or that sort of stuff you can usually just bite on your teeth go closer to your limit than you would usually like to and still remain in the peloton. It will take a proper effort to genuinely expose weaknesses and I'm unsure whether a team will make that.
It's a fun way to phrase, and I agree.

With the Turini, I think it's more about keeping breaks on a short leash cause there will be lots of guys they're not happy to give a few minutes to, so I think the break will indirectly drive the peloton climbing speed. Sometiems you see a first climb being like 7 minutes slower by the peloton early in a stage, that's simply not gonna happen.
 
How is Quatre Chemins not even categoriezed? Turini should be HC, but than final climb is a cat 2 every year
Different categorization standards for these climbs which are located (very) early in the race and for these which happen later on.

In normal circumstances, Turini would be most likely a HC climb, and Quatre Chemins should be categorized as GPM3 at least (Paris-Nice climb categorization is something clearly different).
 
Different categorization standards for these climbs which are located (very) early in the race and for these which happen later on.

In normal circumstances, Turini would be most likely a HC climb, and Quatre Chemins should be categorized as GPM3 at least (Paris-Nice climb categorization is something clearly different).
Yeah, I'm actually positively surprised how selective they've been with some categorizations. Hourcere and Frementelle or however you spell them would very likely get HC in previous Tours, and Glieres is the only really light one.
 
It's a fun way to phrase, and I agree.

With the Turini, I think it's more about keeping breaks on a short leash cause there will be lots of guys they're not happy to give a few minutes to, so I think the break will indirectly drive the peloton climbing speed. Sometiems you see a first climb being like 7 minutes slower by the peloton early in a stage, that's simply not gonna happen.
What riders are gonna be allowed to go into the break is generally super interesting. Will guys like Yates even try to go or will they think it's a lost cause so why even bother. Frankly I cannot really think of any guy I'd usually think of as a potential winner for tomorrow who I wouldn't be worried about if he gets a few minutes.
 
Reactions: Red Rick
Too many guys want to wear yellow. The final begins with the second to last climb, when it will be about distancing the sprinters. The last climb has that flattish end that may ruin an attack on the lower slopes. Alaf' scouted that one...he'll make his move. Mark my words :cool:.
 
Yeah, I'm actually positively surprised how selective they've been with some categorizations. Hourcere and Frementelle or however you spell them would very likely get HC in previous Tours, and Glieres is the only really light one.
I think stuff like the Pas de Peyrol or the Col des Aravis shouldn't be 1st but 2nd category but yeah, it's going both ways this tour. The categorizations are really all over the place
 
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I think stuff like the Pas de Peyrol or the Col des Aravis shouldn't be 1st but 2nd category but yeah, it's going both ways this tour. The categorizations are really all over the place
There's no Arcalis HC so my expectations are met.

Last year basically didn't have any borderline cases, except some really easy cat 1s in the Vosges. 2018 had Aubisuqe getting HC under 5% average.

2017 had triple HC on that Mont du Chat stage.
 
What's worse about Aravis being a cat. 1, is that Saisies directly before it is only a cat. 2.

I'd expect we start Quatre Chemins with the break reeled in and 50-80 riders still in the peloton, it's the kind of profile where the Sagans and Trentins drop on the first half of the final climb I think. There will be attacks, but I agree it's unlikely that the favourites race it properly, so sprint-of-the-elites it is as it will be hard for anyone who gets dropped to make it back.
 
I think Astana and Lopez tipped their hand today. I think that their plan is to be aggressive often, and will not be at all surprised if Lopez tries to attack on Turini, with an Astana rider or two having gotten into the break. Watching the Colmiane stage from Paris-Nice makes me think that it will not take much aggression to see serious gaps in the peloton by the time they get to the top of Turini. If Lopez has someone like Lutsenko in the break, he could hope to keep some gaps on riders who may harbor GC ambitions.

This has a low chance of succeeding, which is why the only team and rider I can see trying it is the Astana/Lopez combination. But they reinforce each other’s tendencies toward low-probability tactics and strategy, so I think there is a reasonable chance it happens.
 
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Given the buildup and stage 1, this would have been the perfect day to test people on the first 2 climbs, but apart from JV probably no team is strong enough to do that and control the finish.

My guess would be snail pace on the Colmiane and something half-hearted on the Turini. Probably from Astana indeed
 

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