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Porte (+350), Quintana (+400), Bardet (+750): Who’s Good Value to Finish on the Podium at 2019 Tour De France?

Nairo Quintana pushing it to the limit on a climb.
Nairo Quintana isn't considered a favorite to win the 2019 Tour de France, but he has intriguing odds to finish on the podium, something he's already done three times in his career. Photo by Joseba Alberdi (flickr) CC License.
  • The 2019 Tour de France starts on Saturday, July 6th, in Brussels
  • BetOnline has posted odds to finish on the podium
  • Team Ineos’ two big guns are the favorites, but there is value on a few proven riders lower down the list

In three days’ time, 176 of the world’s best road cyclists will start one of the most gruelling competitions on Earth. This Saturday (Jul. 6), the 2019 Tour de France starts with Le Grand Depart, a 192 km flat stage from Brussels to Charleroi in Belgium. Nearly 3,500 km later, it will culminate, as always, on the Champs-Elysees in Paris (Sunday, Jul. 28).

Even though four-time champion Chris Froome is out of the race due to injury, the favorites to win the Yellow Jersey are still from Team Ineos (formerly Team Sky): up-and-coming Egan Bernal (+175) and defending champion Geraint Thomas (+225).

Ineos/Sky has won four straight Tours and six of the last seven, so betting on a non-Ineos rider to win Yellow is treacherous territory, even in what’s considered a relatively wide-open year. Luckily, BetOnline has posted odds on finishing top three, which turns a wide-open competition into a gaping chasm.

Odds to Finish Top 3 at the 2019 Tour de France

Rider Age Best TDF Finish (# of Podiums) 2019 Tour de France Podium Odds at BetOnline
Egan Bernal 22 15th in 2018 (0) -160
Geraint Thomas 33 1st in 2018 (1) +100
Jakob Fuglsang 34 7th in 2013 (0) +160
Adam Yates 26 4th in 2016 (0) +200
Richie Porte 34 5th in 2016 (0) +350
Nairo Quintana 29 2nd in 2013, 2015 (3) +400
Thibaut Pinot 29 3rd in 2014 (1) +400
Enric Mas Nicolau 24 N/A +550
Mikel Landa 29 4th in 2017 (0) +550
Rigoberto Uran 32 2nd in 2017 (1) +550
Steven Kruijswijk 32 5th in 2018 (0) +550
Vincenzo Nibali 34 1st in 2014 (2) +550
Romain Bardet 28 2nd in 2016 (2) +750
Alejandro Valverde 39 3rd in 2015 (1) +1200
Dan Martin 32 6th in 2017 (0) +1200
Emanuel Buchmann 26 15th in 2017 (0) +1400
Rohan Dennis 29 101st in 2015 (0) +1400

*Odds as of Jul. 3, 2019.

The GC favorites, Bernal and Thomas, sensibly head this list, as well. My colleague has already covered Bernal and Thomas’ 2019 TDF outlook. I’m going to focus on finding value lower on the list.

Here are my two favorite bets, and biggest fade, for a top-three finish.

Nairo Quintana is Having a Quiet but Solid Season

The diminutive Colombian never lived up to the lofty expectations cycling pundits had for him early in his career. He’s still posted three podium finishes at this race, though, and should enter 2019 with confidence.

At Paris-Nice, he basically rode stroke for stroke with Bernal on the mountainous stages. He wound up second and might have won if he’d had more help from his team.

Movistar will field a strong team at the Tour, as they always do. They are -180 favorites to win the Team Classification as proof of that point.

Quintana likely realizes that, with Froome and Tom Dumoulin out of the race due to crashes, this may be his best chance to ever win the Yellow Jersey. Getting +400 on Nairo to merely crack the top three looks like nice value from where I’m sitting.

Romain Bardet Shows Up at His Home Country

No Frenchman has won the Tour since Bernard Hinault in 1985. The closest any have come was Romain Bardet’s second-place finish in 2016. It was a distant second (over four minutes behind Froome), but it proved Bardet’s chops in the highest of mountains, as he routinely bested the likes of Quintana, Adam Yates, Richie Porte, and Alejandro Valverde when the race reached its crucible.

Another podium finish in 2017 faded to a 6th-place last year and it would be misleading to say that the 28-year-old has been in peak form of late. But he was solid enough at the Criterium du Dauphine (10th place), the major TDF prep race,

His AG2R team, while not the strongest in terms of support riders, is far from the worst, and there will be no question who the team leader is, unlike with Ineos (Bernal, Thomas), UAE Team Emirates (Dan Martin, Fabio Aru), and even potentially Movistar (Quintana, Valverde, Mikel Landa).

Last Five TDF Podiums

Year 1st 2nd 3rd
2018 Geraint Thomas Tom Dumoulin Chris Froome
2017 Chris Froome Rigoberto Uran Romain Bardet
2016 Chris Froome Romain Bardet Nairo Quintana
2015 Chris Froome Nairo Quintana Alejandro Valverde
2014 Vincenzo Nibali Jean-Christophe Peraud Thibaut Pinot

*Italics indicate riders not participating in 2019.

Richie Porte’s Tour History Is a Disaster

No one doubts that Richie Porte has the physiology to win the Tour de France. Back in his Sky days, there were often reports of Porte distancing Froome during training.

But the Tasmanian has never been able to put together three consistent, disaster-free weeks of racing at a Grand Tour. His best finish at the TDF was a 5th-place back in 2016, and his last two attempts resulted in a pair of DNFs.

I won’t be laying any  money on Porte to do something he has never done in his now ten-year career.

Who are you wagering on in the 2019 Tour de France. Let me know in the comments below or @SBD_Sascha on Twitter

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