Tour de France Tour de France 2021, Stage 9: Cluses – Tignes, 144.9 km

The GC battle is obviously over, so it doesn't really matter that this stage wasn't the best suited to it to begin with. Hopefully a breakaway day, if not, a Pogacar domination borefest seems inevitable.
Stage 9 (Cluses – Tignes, 144.9 km)
Like in 2007, the first two Alpine stages are Grand-Bornand and Tignes. This makes for a second short(ish) mountain stage in a row, keeping the weekend below 300 kilometers total. As a compensation for the heartbreak that was the 2019 stage cancellation, Tignes gets to return with this stage from the wrong side. It’s a shame that the race doesn’t end in the Alps this year, as it probably would have meant Iséran-Tignes and a better-positioned Grand Bornand stage, but it is what it is.

Map and profile

Route details
The first 17 kilometers are flat, then it’s time for Côte de Domancy, a good excuse for the French to pay hommage to Hinault and a key point for the breakaway.

The road continues to rise into Megève, taking in the final 8.1 kilometers of the profile below.

A descending false flat takes us through the intermediate sprint…

…then backs into the first cat. 1 of the day, Col des Saisies. It consists of 1.1 kilometer at 8.3% followed by the final 13.7 kilometer of the profile below.

Next up is the first HC climb of this year’s edition. Col du Pré is somewhat borderline, but a good climb nonetheless.

To get into the Tarantaise valley, there’s still the final third of Cormet de Roselend to go, from Col de Méraillet at 8 kilometer on the profile below onwards.

Unlike 2007, the ascent to Tignes goes via Les Brévières instead of the dam. This makes for a slightly harder ascent, but it’s still very much train-friendly (edit: yeah, I totally didn't write this pre-Tour). The profile below ends 200 flat meters before the finish line.

Final kilometers
Tunnel city.

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Look at the result of stage 9 in all the other GCs Pogacar has done in his career. The result should be obvious.

Yes. yes... math-inclined people would probably say you can't do statistics based on such a small amount of data. I'm not math-inclined.
Shut, this one is easy. Pogacar attacks on the Col de Pre and takes 10 minutes to the second rider. Grupetto arrives outside time limit taking half of the Tour out of the race. UCI and ASO are embarrassed and don't know what to do and later decide to reinstate the whole Grupetto to the race again. Pello Bilbao keeps practicing the Zubeldia method and keeps climbing up the ladder!!!
Reactions: bigcog
Pogacar on the defence tomorrow. For the first time he actually looked tired today. That being said, excluding Pog's terrible day, I don't expect any big attacks from his opposition - they were crushed physically and mentally today. Breakaway win is on the cards and some GC fight for podium places is possible in last kilometers on Tignes.
Carapaz doesn't mind trying, but he already tried 2 times and wasn't strong enough
This should go to the break, as Pogacar said he'll ride defensively. The Pre/Roselend combo is hard, but the descent is really long and a good chance to recover. A good descender can also take time there. I'd love to see Nibali win.
And here I was thinking this was the stage Ineos could gang up on Pogacar. Now its a lost cause. No doubt Pogi will extend his lead further and continue to demoralize everyone. Because that's what happens when you are on a different planet. I am utterly astonished to read the stage 8 result.
Reactions: gregrowlerson