who can blow up the mountain race?

Although Tadej Pogacar seems untouchable, several profiles stand out before the great crossing of the Alps to destabilize the leader. Review of staff with their strengths and weaknesses.

Special correspondents at Morzine

The Vinegaard-Roglic duet *****

The good news for the Dutch team is that Primoz Roglic, who fell hard on the cobblestone stage (the Slovene, usually cursed on the Tour, had been picked up with a dislocated shoulder) was able to recover, regain strength. and sensations. He remains ambushed in the general classification (11th to 2.52 ”) and could, in the sequence of mountain stages, be considered as an additional possibility of harassing Tadej Pogacar who could suffer the heat wave. The Jumbo-Visma team presented itself, at the beginning of Copenhagen, as the strongest and most experienced, the most capable of destabilizing the one on which everything slips, the difficulties, the adversity, the pressure: Tadej Pogacar . “ We will not attack without thinking but we will not stay until Paris without doing anything. “promises Merijn Zeeman, one of the directors of the Jumbo-Visma team. Meanwhile, after 9 stages, the balance of power remains the same. Jumbo-Visma has solid assets but has already spent a lot (especially with Wout Van Aert) and Pogacar escapes all traps, with the insolence of those who doubt nothing.

The Ineos trio ***

The British team (which has won 7 of the last 10 Tours) has been suffering since 2020 as a result of Tadej Pogacar. Ineos, after the 9th stage, saw the sudden disappearance of the Colombian Martínez (30th at 17’12 ” in the yellow jersey). But the team has three runners in the top 7 of the overall standings (Geraint Tomàs 3rd to 1:17 of the yellow jersey; Adam Yates 4t to 1’25 ”; Thomas Pidcock 7th to 1’46 ”). What to play. “ I aim for the final victory and I will give it my all, although I know that I am already behind Pogacar, especially because of his way of running. But on the Grands Tours anything can happen, especially right now, with this damn Covid that forces us to be extremely vigilant. “, he summed up inAFP Geraint Tomàs. Will Inos ’assets be able to join forces, take turns trying to shake Pogacar and bring down the Tour, or will they settle for following and limiting damage to secure good places in the general? For now, they have taken on the role of observers worried about receiving the blows.

Vlasov, the enigma **

Aleksandr Vlasov, leader of the Bora-Hansgrohe team, discovers the Tour de France. In Copenhagen, he landed at the starting line with a flattering reputation born of his successes in the Tour de Romandia and a Tour de Suisse of which he was the leader before having to leave hastily after a test of Covid positive. Fallen and beaten in the lower back, the Russian (12th at 3’12 ”) grits his teeth. He could, if his physique leaves him alone, be one of those who will get up on his pedals to try to turn things around and derail Pogacar’s project to head for a third consecutive success on the Tour.

Bardet and Gaudu must choose **

5th at 1’38 ” of the yellow jersey, david gaudu remains in an ideal position for a podium, goal announced before the big start. The Groupama-FDJ leader continues to progress on the mountain and claims to be one of the best climbers in the world, but he is not immune to failure like last year at Ventoux. “The Télégraphe-Galibier pass is perhaps the climb I have done most often in my life and Alpe (d’Huez) is legendary. I know these two stages by heart, I have often been in internships in the area“On Monday, the team leader said that he knows that the time trial in Rocamadour will not necessarily be favorable for him the day before his arrival in Paris. Just behind the general (6th to 1’39), Romain Bardet masked advance. “I have all the doors open“The DSM runner said that he hides his game very well. It is difficult to decipher the statements he made on Monday during the break. At a crossroads, however, he has to make a decision, either to play the general or to make a shot, which was raised before the start of the 2022 edition. Its fall on Saturday and persistent discomfort could demand caution in the Alps. create a surprise.

Carlos Quintana wants his stage **

carlos quintana chopping the piece. Finally the Alps, its best playground, is always capable of lightning, at least for a day. He will aim for a stage victory. The heat to which you are accustomed can be an asset. “ We are with the best. I’m in good shape“, Said the climber of Arkea Samsic who will inevitably attack at one time or another, knowing that he will lose a lot of time in the Rocamadour time trial. It remains to be seen where? In the Alps or in the Pyrenees?

Thibaut Pinot, the unpredictable *

On Sunday, Thibaut Pinot proved he had the legs to go for a mountain stage, but he will have to be a smarter strategist. The Groupama climber left too late to attack Jungels. “It gives me ideas for the future.“, entrusted the Franc-Comtois often there when we do not expect it. His coach, Marc Madiot, gave him a good start in the 9th stage but his function is above all to be in the service of Gaudu who, without a doubt, the will need Wednesday and Thursday.On Tuesday, however, he could be free to take part in a break-up.He has the advantage of not posing any threat to the overall favorite ranking.

And also *

The Spaniard Enric Mas (Movistar; 8th at 1’50 ”) is the asset of a team that has fought in recent years to establish a clear hierarchy crushed by the personality of Alejandro Valverde. Mas (2nd in the Vuelta 2018 and 2021) may surprise. Warren Barguil too (We have to take a risk, there won’t be 50 chances, for Warren, I have big ambitions for stage victory “, says Yvon Ledanois, the sporting director of the Arkéa-Samsic team.).

The mythical ascents of the Tour de France

Go to slideshow (10)

Leave a Comment