Tour de France 2023 – Stage 9

It will all come down to the Puy de Dôme.


It is not completely flat before the climb, as the whole stage still has 3250 climbing meters.

The start is a up and down with a sprint at the top of what could have easily have been a KOM sprint. It is 5 km at 4%. I think there is a chance the breakaway goes here.

Moving on, nothing really happens until the Puy de Dôme. It goes like a staircase.

First 5.4 km at 7.3%.
Small plateau.
Last 4.2 km at 11.8%.

Last time used in 1988.

Comparison to Marie Blanque

The two of the are almost identitical.

Climbing times on Marie Blanque

  • Remember Hindley was in the breakaway, hence why he likely was so slow.
  • Note, this is tracker data – a big shoutout to @velofacts on twitter.


A warm day on the bike. Wind from the W/SW meaning a crosstailwind/tailwind for most of the stage but a headwind on Puy de Dôme. As Puy de Dôme is going in a circle, they will eventually get a tailwind. It is a climb with plenty of trees so either it can create a slipstream of headwind or the trees cover.

How will the stage unfold?

We will see a GC battle but it will start very late. It can only start on Puy de Dôme and even on the first part due to the headwind. It is a very iconic climb, a place where both Vingegaard and Pogacar would like to win.

Still, we should see a big breakaway get up the road. As we don’t have any mountains during the stage, getting a skinny climber up the road can be difficult. We are also on stage 9 after a tough opening and that will play a major role too.

On stage 5, the breakaway lost approximately two minutes on the Marie Blanque, with Gall and Hindley being the only ones who was still in front. If you want to win from the breakaway, you need an engine to get away on the flat and a good set of legs on the day.

Personally, I think we will see a breakaway take the stage. It will very much be up to UAE to keep the breakaway on a tight leash and they did not look very comfortable at that the other day.


Vingegaard – one day he had won the Tour de France, the next day he seemed human. I don’t want to talk about stage 6 too much, they should in hindsight have called it off. In hindsight, they should not have said they put Pogacar under pressure because looking at the body language he was not. It was a great tactic that just didn’t work. Back to tomorrow, he has shown he is better now on shorter and steep mountains. He should be up there.

Pogacar – welcome back. One must assume he only gets better the more he races. I think UAE may try and control the stage and set up Pogacar. I’m pondering now but why could he not follow Jonas on stage 5? Has it anything to do with the wrist and steep gradients? I’m not sure. I think he starts as the favorite among the GC contenders tomorrow.

Hindley – he perhaps spend a bit too much energy taking the jersey in order to defend it. Or, he should simply not try to follow Kuss, Vingegaard and Pogacar. He will be fighting to stay on the podium.

Rodriguez – currently, he is looking very strong right now. He is often one of the last men to get dropped, he should be fighting to keep his top-5.

S. Yates – as it is the only climb of the day, S. Yates will likely perform very well.

Meintjes – breakaway hope #1. If the break goes on the short climb, I do think he can win from the breakaway. Think back to La Vuelta a Espana 2022, Stage 9. Perhaps a few teams don’t want him taking their top-10 spot just yet.

Gall – breakaway hope #2 climbing very well. He will be happy they finish at the summit.

Ciccone – breakaway hope #3 he was not far off Gall the other day. That means the legs are working just fine.

Johannesen – breakaway hope #4 best from the breakaway the other day. He is a good shout for another top result.

Woods – breakaway hope #5. Can they get him in the breakaway? If they do, he will be very tough to beat.


⭐⭐⭐⭐ Gall
⭐⭐⭐ Pogacar, Vingegaard
⭐⭐ Hindley, Woods, Meintjes
⭐ S. Yates, Johannsen, Ciccone, Rodriguez

Who will win?

I will take a breakaway win for Felix Gall.

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