- Stage 14 of the TDF (Saturday, September 12) may favor any sprinter who can survive several serious climbs
- After the race shifted on Friday, does Primoz Roglic hold a commanding lead?
- How do we handicap an unpredictable Stage 14 that may result in a decent price?
The changing of the guard appears to have taken place.
Primoz Roglic was the pre-race favorite this year in the Tour de France, and he lived up to the billing on Friday, pulling away from defending champion Egan Bernal on the final climb of Stage 13.
Saturday’s Stage 14 profiles similarly to Friday, meaning GC contenders may not win the day, but attacks and shows of strength from the leaders are likely.
2020 Tour de France Stage 14 Odds
|Rider||Odds at DraftKings|
|Wout Van Aert||+500|
|Greg Van Avermaet||+1600|
|Soren Kragh Andersen||+2200|
|Thomas De Gendt||+2500|
|Edvald Boasson Hagen||+3300|
Odds as of Sep. 11th.
On Friday, Maximilian Schachmann led most of the way with several different riders at various stages, but he was caught and passed at the very end. Daniel Martinez took the stage with Lennard Kamna just behind, and Schachmann settled for third. The bigger story was Roglic pulling away from Bernal and extending his overall lead.
Ineos surprisingly dictated the tempo of the peloton for long periods of the day, but when the racing got serious, Roglic had strength and Bernal struggled to keep up.
Roglic leads Tadej Pogacar by 44 seconds with Bernal 59 seconds off the leader’s pace. The biggest impediments to Roglic, at this point, are a crash or COVID-19. If neither of those slow him down, he is extremely likely to win the race.
Saturday’s stage is once again bumpy. The 197-kilometer trip from Clermont-Ferrand to Lyon is only flat briefly at the start and at the final stretch following a serious descent. There are five categorized climbs, and another successful breakaway is possible.
Wout Van Aert has captured two stages this year and profiles as a strong contender on Saturday. He does not have the pure speed of the top sprinters like Caleb Ewan and Sam Bennett, but unlike the speedsters, he has an ability to stay with the pack, launch an attack, and get to the finish line.
This has been a breakout Tour for Van Aert who, at the age of 25, feels like a green jersey contender and/or opportunistic candidate to win stages for years to come.
A rivalry has formed between Van Aert and Peter Sagan, who has won seven green jerseys in his career. For Sagan, it has been tough sledding this year and an incident Van Aert has been the talk of the race.
Whether you agree with the substantial penalty handed to Sagan or not, his style is similar to Van Aert. He is strong enough to make it through the mountains, able to launch an attack against the non-sprinters, and on his best day can win a true sprint, too. Sagan has made a career out of finding winnable stages and compiling points wherever they are offered. It is reasonable to think his team, Bora–Hansgrohe, will be all in to pick up a stage win for Sagan on Saturday.
Three riders that have been in the conversation before many stages, and in the mix several times this year, are Julian Alaphilippe, Marc Hirschi, and Greg Van Avermaet.
Alaphilippe is a terrific descender who won Stage 2. He has been up-and-down throughout the race, but there will be a stage during the final week that he targets, and with many climbs and descents on Saturday, this could be the one.
Hirschi came close to stealing an early stage, and then completed the task on Stage 12. He has shown a tremendous ability to get in front, and if he clears the field, will be difficult to run down from behind.
Van Avermaet was in a pretty good spot on Friday, but the Olympic road race gold medalist realized he wasn’t going to be able to reel in the break. He is looking to add to his four career stage wins (including two time trials).
Sometimes, late in the Tour, a name or that hasn’t been widely heard from wins a stage, largely because they haven’t done the hard work and have been waiting in the weeds.
Jasper Stuyven and Soren Kragh Anderson are versatile riders likely waiting for an opportunity. They both have enough experience that they know what it takes, but not so much name recognition that their price isn’t intriguing.
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