Paris – Nice 2024 – Stage 1 Preview

A last-minute post but maybe the weather forecast will be correct.


In many ways a day that should end in a sprint. However, the climbs may decide otherwise.

Côte de Bazemont starts the finale. It more or less the same gradients from start to finish. There are 38 km to the line from the top. If you ask me, to far out.

Then we get to the bonus-seconds climb (6-4-2 seconds). Either the breakaway takes them or the GC men will. I think the last outcome has the biggest probability to happen. Here there is 18 km left.

Not long after they ride the Côte d’Herbeville for the second time. Irregular and is better described in two parts. The early, dark-red “Mur d’Herbeville” is 650m at 10.1% and the orange section is just 1 km at 5.5%.

Then the ride home, 12.5 km.

You have the finale here. Very quick until the last 1500m. Then a roundabout (only the right way around it), right turn in a roundabout with 1250m left, another bend under the flamme rouge and the last turn is a sharp left turn 650m out. The road starts to rise here but not a whole lot.


4 m/s from the NW which is more of a cross-headwind in the finale. Dry and just around 10 degrees C.

How will the stage unfold?

It is all about the last climbs. Who wants what. I think you can make an argument for Jayco-AlUla riding it a tough stage for Matthews yet than means sacrificing Groenewegen. Then you have Lidl-Trek for Mads Pedersen, even Skjelmose would help I’m fairly certain. Plus, you have the GC men making it tougher than necessary when they are going to sprint for bonus seconds. Will the just take the stage win from there with a chasing peloton?

I can’t read and understand the things going on in the team bus, but I think my conclusion is this: We will not see a regular bunch sprint. Something will happen in the bonus-seconds sprint and the Mur d’Herbeville. My gut is telling me Evenepoel likely will try something.


Danny van Poppel – I think we can see a scenario where the fastest sprinters are dropped and it opens up a small chance for him to get a good result for himself.

Laurence Pithie – he falls into the same category.

OIav Kooij – a win in the UAE Tour is just what he needed. Once more, not a lot of help for him. He can handle a bit of climbing and hold his own in the sprint. He is very good in a hectic sprint.

Mads Pedersen – a good stage for him. The toughness near the finale makes it easier for him to contest the pure sprinters. Plus, the run is is slightly uphill, something he enjoys. A good contender for the stage.

Michael Matthews – will they put the hammer down to try and set it up for Matthews? It would be foolish, as they will drop De Lie or Pedersen. Yet, I think he is a safer option than Jakobsen.

Bryan Coquard – Le Coq will surely fight for a top-10 spot today.

Arnaud Démare – I think it is a good looking stage for him but he has not been very consistent this season.

Arnaud de Lie – he will be happy to start at a “real race”. I’m just kidding but his crash in Le Samyn wasn’t pretty and he gave up. He will try to bounce back today and he is one of the big favorites.

Kaden Groves – always climbs well but has little support again which didn’t leave him with a positive UAE Tour.

De Klejn – can he climb? I don’t know. He can sprint.

Who will win?

I think Mads Pedersen will take the stage win in a reduced bunch sprint.

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