Etoile de Bessèges 2023 – Stage 5 (ITT).

A time trial in Ales to find the winner of the race. This time trial has been used the last couple of editions. Usually, it suits the time trialists more than the puncheurs, but at the same time, it is a mix of GC riders and time trialists and GC riders that fill-out the top-10.

The riders start and head south, doing a switchback to move their way back into town before the last climb.


Once more the wind will blow from N. It will blow 5-6 m/s. Dry conditions.


Skjelmose – as more or less expected, he is now wearing the leader’s jersey. He got a gap large enough to Latour and Powless that will make him “ride it a bit more safe”. I do not think he will go all out in every corner. It is about securing the GC. Nonetheless, he will be one of the contenders for the podium.

Powless – not enough good results against the clock. He will finish top-3 in the GC. It is all about defending second place overall. I think that will be difficult.

Latour – he has been riding well. He will go all out and hope to surprise. I expect him to deliver a very good result tomorrow.

Vauquelin – 5th today was a very good result. I expect him to challenge for the podium tomorrow. He is usually very good against the clock.

B. Thomas – 19th today. He was likely impacted by the late crash on stage 3. I think he will be in contention for the podium tomorrow.

Ben Tullet – Usually, he does well against the clock. A top-10.

Mads Pedersen – he is in great shape just now. He was second here last year behind Ganna. He will be one of the best tomorrow.

Steffan Bissegger – the best pure TT-rider here. Is he in form? I doubt it. I haven’t really seen him. Nonetheless, he will likely be in the hotseat for some time.

De Lie – 8th today. What a rider. He will likely be in the mix tomorrow. I think he can top-10.

Who will win?

I will go for a surprise winner. Kevin Vauquelin.

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