Sunday, June 20, 2021
HomeBlogsEx-Garmin Physio Toby Watson's BlogOld School Climbing Test (Preview: TDF 2012 Stage 11)

Old School Climbing Test (Preview: TDF 2012 Stage 11)

-

Today is the first “High” mountaintop finish. Stage 7 was considered “Medium”, and looking at the pictures of the stage today, one can see why!

Preview: TDF 2012 Stage 13
The Sky boys work hard – again.

This is a short, mountainous stage that may well see fireworks from the big hitters. When considering the terrain, there isn’t really any respite throughout the stage, and it is a virtual guarantee that Vincenzo Nibali, Jurgen van den Broeck and Cadel Evans will equally attempting to make things difficult for the SKY super team.

The big hope from all three will be to shed all but Froome from Wiggo’s side as quickly as possible, which means they’ll equally be dropping their own helpers (Richie Porte would be riding for gc if he was in any other team, and is the number three man for Sky!!).

The shortness of the stage, and the ease with which support staff will be able to feed and water them at the tops of climbs means that this won’t be a huge issue. I am looking forward to seeing if Evans’ head to the side, pain face on, gruelling tempo comes out to play today (a la 2011 Stage 18) and if Wiggo can go with that pace for a long period of time.

What will also be interesting is seeing if the break has any real chance of getting away with so much at play for the big boys, and so high a chance that they will attack relatively early in the stage.

Preview: TDF 2012 Stage 13
Fred Kessiakoff is in the spots at the moment.

If I were Fred Kessiakoff going for the Polka-Dot Jersey, I’d sit on Voeckler’s wheel as he is all but guaranteed to attempt to collect the maximum points over the first climb, fully expecting to be gobbled up and spat out later in the race.

Go with him into the break, then attack him up the climb… But that is just a minor subplot today – it’s all about Nibali & Evans vs Wiggo & Froomey. Definitely one to stay up for, Antipodeans!!

My tips are VDB from Cadel from Froomey.

Toby Watsonhttps://www.veloveritas.co.uk
Ex-Garmin Transitions physiotherapist and soigneur Toby Watson brings you inside the squad, and shows you what it's like to be working with a top team on the biggest races in the world. Through his regular blog updates, Toby shares his sense of drama and fun that were essential parts of his job. Toby is Australian, and currently lives in Girona with his fiancee Amanda. If he has any time, he enjoys reading and running, and occasionally skiing too, when he can.

Related Articles

Mark Cavendish, Just How Good Is He?

Today is the first out and out sprint stage. Today we find out if the form Gossy and Greipel showed yesterday relative to Mark Cavendish was true, or if Cav was holding back a little. (For those out of the loop, Greipel showed that his train is beautifully organised and disciplined; and Gossy showed that he can bop a win over the great one when at the Tour.)

Dave Millar Scores a Deserved Win (TDF 2012 Stage 13)

Dave Millar takes a superb stage; Stage 12 was as close to a guaranteed breakaway stage as there is with it’s steeply lumpy early: flat late profile. The sprinters lose too much time to be able to catch up and contest a bunch finish, but it is far too flat to result in any time gaps between the big hitters.

Desperate Procession at the TDU

Today the final stage of the 2011 TDU gets underway, a desperate procession maybe, but it's devastatingly disappointing for me, but also extremely exciting considering it is Cadel Evans who will cross the line the champion today, calamitous misadventure notwithstanding. (brief pause while author touches wood.) I can't believe it's nearly over, and conversely can't believe that Gilbert's win on Stage One was only three weeks ago.

The Bounce: TdF 2010 Stage 3 (mini Roubaix)

The Bounce. We came to this Tour with nine guys ready to race. We’re down our leader and facing some injuries, but if yesterday proved anything it’s that we’re still up for it. The day started out with a little stress, considering the injuries some of the guys were going to go over cobbles with.

Unicycles

I was sitting in a little plaza in Girona the other day, tucking into a gelato and enjoying the dream, when a dude on a unicycle with arms outstretched furiously pedalled his way past me. It got me to thinking: Has there ever been a worse invention in the history of mankind?

Time to Regroup (Preview: TDF 2012 Stage 12)

Time to Regroup. After the savagery of yesterday’s stage, today is very likely to be a neutral stage from the GC boys’ point of view. There are big hills in it, but they are very early in the stage. Hence those who played big roles late in the climb yesterday will likely be riding small, tucked into the bunch conserving energy.