2018 Tour de France: Stage 5 live race updates, blog

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    It'll be lumpy on Stage 5 at the Tour de France, which is going to put the sprinters under extreme pressure to hold on. (Photo by Jeff PACHOUD / AFP) (Photo credit should read JEFF PACHOUD/AFP/Getty Images)

    After a nervy start to the Tour de France, Stage 5 presents an opportunity to attack, a danger for the general classification riders, and a tough day out for the sprinters all in one. Join The Roar for live coverage from 10:30pm (AEST).

    The 204.5-kilometre journey, starting in Lorient and finishing in Quimper, takes the peloton further across the challenging Brittany-region roads.

    While the first 50 kilometres are more or less flat, it’s anything but easy from there. The race lumps its way to the intermediate sprint at the 92-kilometre mark, in Roudouallec, before there are five categorised climbs – three of them Category 3.

    In many ways, it’s reminiscent of Stage 2 of the 2014 Tour, from York to Sheffield in the United Kingdom, when Vincenzo Nibali took the honours. This maybe isn’t quite as difficult, but outside of the categorised climbs, there is barely a metre of flat roads.

    It’s always either up or down and combined with the three Category 3 climbs over the final 60 kilometres, it’ll burn the legs and likely lead to splits in the peloton.

    If the sprinters are to hold on all the way to the finish line, it would seem like a minor miracle. Rather, it seems the most easily backable option is a small bunch sprint with the general classification riders joined by the likes of Peter Sagan and Michael Matthews.

    The final categorised climb is the 2.2 kilometre climb of the Cote de La Montagne De Lacronan, about 25 kilometres from the finish line at almost six per cent. However, there are three recognisable lumps in the road before from there, including an uphill dash to the line, which will likely rule out the pure sprinters.

    With many of the GC contenders already being affected by crashes, this is shaping up as a real opportunity for those riders out of position – Nairo Quintana springs to mind – to try and make up some crucial seconds ahead of the Mur de Bretagne tomorrow.

    The quick pace is going to make it tough for the sprinters. Peter Sagan and Michael Matthews should hang on, but whether they win the stage or not is up for debate.

    Alejandro Valverde is my pick for the day. He has a responsibility to hang up the front and will be there at the death to sprint for the stage. Expect him to beat Simon Gerrans, of BMC, who will be protecting Richie Porte.

    Be sure to join The Roar for live coverage of Stage 5 at the 2018 Tour de France from 10:30pm (AEST) and don’t forget to add a comment in the section below.

    One of the mainstays of The Roar, Scott Pryde has written over 2000 articles covering everything from rugby league to basketball, from tennis to cricket. You can follow him on Twitter @sk_pryde.

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    The Crowd Says (116)

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    • Roar Guru

      Scott Pryde said | 1:35am | ! Report

      Thanks for joining me this evening on The Roar for our live coverage of the 2018 Tour de France.

      Hopefully you enjoyed the call.

      One of my colleagues will be back for Stage 6 tomorrow and the Mur de Bretagne.

      Bye for now.

    • Roar Guru

      Scott Pryde said | 1:34am | ! Report

      1. Greg Van Avermaet (BMC) @ 18:22:00
      2. Tejay Van Garderern (BMC) + 0:02
      3. Philippe Gilbert (Quick-Step Floors) + 0:03
      4. Geraint Thomas (Sky) + 0:05
      5. Julian Alaphilippe (Quick-Step Floors) + 0:06
      6. Bob Jungels (Quick-Step Floors) + 0:09
      7. Tom Dumoulin (Sunweb) + 0:13
      8. Soren Kragh Andersen (Sunweb) + 0:13
      9. Rigoberto Uran (Drapac) + 0:37
      10. Rafal Majka (Bora-Hanggrohe) + 0:52

    • Roar Guru

      Scott Pryde said | 1:32am | ! Report

      TOP 10

      1. Peter Sagan (Bora-Hansgrohe) @ 4:48:06
      2. Sonny Colbrelli (Bahrain-Merida) + 0:00
      3. Philippe Gilbert (Quick-Step Floors) + 0:00
      4. Alejandro Valverde (Movistar)
      5. Julian Alaphilippie (Quick-Step Floors)
      6. Daniel Martin (UAE Team Emirates)
      7. Greg Van Avermaet (BMC)
      8. Soren Andersen (Norwary)
      9. Andrea Pasqualon (Wanty-Groupe Gobert)
      1o. Vincenzo Nibali (Bahrain-Merida)

    • Roar Guru

      Scott Pryde said | 1:29am | ! Report

      Thoughts on the stage Roarers?

    • Roar Guru

      Scott Pryde said | 1:29am | ! Report

      So then, Sagan wins the stage and Van Avermaet maintains his grip on the yellow jersey for now.

    • Roar Guru

      Scott Pryde said | 1:29am | ! Report

      Gilbert puts the hammer down! He has gone really, really early here about 600 metres from home. He opens up a little gap, but Van Avermaet gets into the wheels, dragging Sagan and Nibali among others across with him. Valverde and Dan Martin are also into this group.

      They come over the top of the crest and Van Avermaet is forced to the front, leading around the final bend. He will open up, Sagan is second wheel and come around. So does Colbrelli and it’s a drag race between Colbrelli and Sagan, but the man in green is too strong, too fast and he takes a second stage for the race!

      Looks like all the general classification contenders were there so there shouldn’t be time gaps against any of them.

    • Roar Guru

      Scott Pryde said | 1:27am | ! Report

      Now they go through the little downhill and onto the ramp up to the line. 1 kilometre to go and it’s still Bernal in control of the peloton, who are filed out in a single-line. Anyone back there is going to have to go.

    • Roar Guru

      Scott Pryde said | 1:26am | ! Report

      Just over 1 kilometre left now. Sky are setting a cracking pace through Kwiatkowski here, so it’s going to be hard to come around him.

      He pulls off though and this is Yohann Offredo having a crack for Wanty-Groupe Gobert before Bernal shuts it down.

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