Sunday, 3 July 2016
2016 Tour de France: Stage 2 – Saint-Lô to Cherbourg
Today will surely be a day to remember for Mark Cavendish – his first Tour stage while wearing the Yellow Jersey. However, it will be very tough for him to hold onto Yellow today with a short, tough uphill finish.
Given his huge respect for the Tour and its history and traditions, Mark will do his very best to honour Yellow fighting to hold onto it. However, the final run-in features the 3rd category Côte de la Glacière with sections up to 14%.
This tough finale is likely to rule out not just Cav but also Marcel Kittel and André Griepel. Instead it should suit riders, who shine in the Ardennes classics, particularly Liège-Bastogne-Liège. This means riders like Dan Martin, Alejandro Valverde, Greg Van Avermaet and Joaquim Rodríguez. It will also surely suit World Champion Peter Sagan. Also the GC contenders will want to be there, so as not to lose time on their rivals. Last year Chris Froome was very impressive on the Mur de Huy – the finish climb of Liège-Bastogne-Liège.
Unfortunately the finish may give an indication of how well Alberto Contador is recovering from yesterday's crash.
However, I'm going for the experienced and wily Valverde with Sagan as a second option.
Mark Cavendish in Yellow for this stage