Volta ao Algarve em Bicicleta 2024 – Stage 2 Preview

Alto da Fóia.

Route

They change the run-in almost every year and it is still the same outcome, the long drag before the sprint.

The finale. 1st segment; 3km at 7.1%, 2nd segment; 3.8km at 7.9% and 3rd segment; 7.5 km at 5.9%.

Alto da Fóia. Mostly with a headwind tomorrow until 1500m left. The late turn with 150m left gives them a headwind. Open your sprint early.

Weather

Windy again and with rain. A cross-headwind for most of the finale. As mentioned, the headwind becomes a crosswind with 1500m – 150m left before a tailwind over the line. Don’t wait to late.

Contenders

Battisstella – An Astana rider! The results have not been very good and it mainly comes down to a crash in Australia. We will see if he bounces back tomorrow, he has the ability to challenge for a top-10.

Costa – a very good stage for him if he is in shape. I looked at his history for this finish and it is very good. A top-10, potentially a top-5.

Healy – I think EF will hope to keep both in the front group. Healy is still an uncut diamond who I can’t fully predict. I think he stays in the front group.

Madouas – 4th here in 2023. He did well in Vuelta Ciclista a la Region de Murcia, so the form should be good enough to challenge for a top-10.

Pidcock – a climb that suits him, no? The headwind makes it easier for him to stay in contention but this is also about being smart. You wait to late and you are boxed in for the sprint. He has to hope the team can position him well and he has the punch to win. I think a top-10 is doable but he is very inconsistent.

Tao G – he has a good punch to him and will hope to fight for the win here. He is better at these finishes than you think. A podium shout.

Evenepoel – he has improved a lot when it comes to uphill finishes. I think the team will have a few helpers left for the end, it is all about stretching it out and make sure Remco does not get boxed in. He won the stage back in 2020.

Wout van Aert – not contesting the sprint today. He races for stage wins, I assume that is tomorrow? The headwind makes it easier to hold on but I’m not sure how the climbing legs are in February. With the opening weekend 14 days away, I guess he will be able to hold on.

Hirschi – a top-10.

Cort – winner here in 2023. Rumors are that he is back to normal, more or less, after illness.

Who will win?

I have my doubts about Wout van Aert just now. He started 2023 off slow too. I will take a win for Evenepoel, he is smart enough to launch early and use it to his advantage.

Leave a Reply