Gaaaaaame on! Big Hitters’ Playground. It has finally become time for the big swinging cats to unsheathe their claws. It feels like forever since the race started — I reckon the first big climbs don’t normally come quite so late — so I reckon there’ll be a few lads (and their teams) wondering what their form is like and hoping that they earn the big bucks that they’re paid.
Today the race goes over three big bergs — a Cat. 1 to begin — the Hourquette d’Anzican, which has never been climbed before. This starts some 80km from the finish line, meaning time cut is going to be an issue for the sprinters if the race is on early. The boys are unlikely to be going quick at this stage, but it will still be really tough for the bigger lads (the sprinters and the like) to keep up.