It is time for the first of three uphill sprints.
This is what you would call an irregular climb. The first 1500m will zap the legs, and the last 500m at 10.2% speak for itself. It is a day for the puncheurs.
Should stay dry and not too warm.
How will the stage unfold?
A breakaway will go up the road. Most likely local riders. From what I can see, everyone got the same time today after the crash. That means UAE and INEOS will control the day, trying to set it up.
How do you mess their plan up? Difficult, I’d say. The last 60 km are hilly, but it should not be a problem for the two teams. Attacking early on Sosnówka (5km 5%) may seem like a good idea but I’d argue a foolish one. It will all come down to the finale.
Here, you can attack. 1500m at 10.3% followed by a plateau – the plateau is where you attack. Then 1200m at 8.1% to the line. It is a tough one to stay away. I just think we will see a GC sprint.
Almeida – should have the team working for him all day. He is a funny type of rider. A diesel with a punch. You will see him excel at longer climbs at 6-7% and being one of the best at double digits as long as the climb is short. He is one of the favorites for tomorrow.
Higuita – he packs a good kick. The first part of the climb is good for him, thinning the group out. His positioning is like none other, it is absolutely horrible. Yet, his sprint uphill is fantastic.
Guerreiro – I think he packs a decent sprint uphill, enough for a top-10.
Van Wilder – it may be on the difficult side for him, but you never know. I doubt it is, I think we will see him challenging for the podium.
Vauquelin – he goes well on short climbs, and he does not mind if they are steep either. I think he will attack on the plateau, when the favorites are more or less isolated.
Onley – the kind of rider that could surprise here. A top-10.
Dunbar – not the quickest but not easy to drop. A top result for him tomorrow.
Sobrero – will he ride for Dunbar or get his own chance? He has proved in the past he goes well on double digits.
Kämna – you just watch out for the late attack and see who can follow.
Kwiatkowski – I think this suits him the most out of the INEOS boys.
⭐⭐⭐ Higuita, Onley
⭐⭐ Van Wilder, Kwiatkowski, Vauquelin
⭐ Dunbar, Kämna, Guerreiro, Sobrero
Who will win?
I will take a stage win for Almeida. He has the team to keep him near the front and keep him there until he attacks himself.