Tour de France 2012: Live Stage 15 updates, blog
105 Have your say
Tour de France 2012 (Poster by Chungkong)
Stage fifteen of the 2012 Tour de France between Samatan and Pau will be one of the last stages to feature the sprinters. Please join us for live blogging from 9:00 pm AEST with full coverage starting at 10:00pm.
Rolling hills with three small categorised climbs are the features of this rather short Tour stage. The climbs come towards the end of the 158.5 kilometre route with the longest being the 2.1 kilometre Cote de Lahitte-Toupiere. With an average gradient of 5.3 per cent, it shouldn’t cause the peloton too much trouble. The other two climbs are of similar length and gradient.
Time is running out for Goss and Farrar to claim stage victories for their teams, while Cavendish will also be looking to add to his solitary victory. I expect the Sky sprinter to continue onto Paris, but should he decide to pull out in preparation for the Olympics, then it will be after this stage.
The chance is there for another breakaway, but success may not be as easy as it was for last night’s group which stormed home over 18 minutes ahead of the peloton. While the main group was on a go-slow for most of the day and then faced the added inconvenience of tacks being spread across the roads in front of them, the pace will be a lot more frantic today with the sprinters’ teams keen to record further victories. With the green jersey all but wrapped up by Peter Sagan, it is stage victories that the likes of Greipel and company are after now.
With that in mind expect to see Lotto Belisol and Orica-GreenEdge doing most of the grunt work today at the head of the peloton. Sky and Liquigas-Cannondale will be there-abouts, but I wonder if we’ll see Wiggins lead out Cavendish as he did Edvald Boasson Hagen two days ago?
The 600 metre finishing straight will provide the perfect opportunity for the sprinters to go shoulder to shoulder in what should be a high speed conclusion to the day’s racing.
Join us tonight from 9:00 pm AEST to see how it all unfolds.