Tour de Suisse Stage 7 Preview
Updated: Jun 26, 2019
Antwan Tolhoek took the win on the first summit finish of the race, coming from a 25-rider breakaway that was in front all day long. He beat Egan Bernal who almost managed to catch him after attacking the peloton in the climb, and François Bidard who was also part of the break. The peloton was attacked by the Colombian, Jan Hirt and Domenico Pozzovivo were those closer to him in a peloton that arrived in pieces, with Bernal taking the yellow jersey.
Positive: Besides obviously Bernal, Hirt and Benoot with great rides, Dennis keeping himself very composed and arriving well placed, Lennard Kamna the biggest surprise coming in in the middle of the climbers, shame that he lost time in the previous days, also Aru giving very good signs of recovery.
Negative: Simon Spilak didn't loose a whole lot of time but was sub-par on the expectations, Wilco Kelderman completely gone from the fight, Rob Britton aswell. If you want to consider Asgreen too he's out of GC, but it didn't look like his plan, and the way he's been working since the start of the race it seemed clear he wasn't in for the overall.
Stage 7 is a whole different affair, it's 217 kilometers long and has around 4300 meters of climbing despite not looking like so at first sight. The truth is the two climbs of Flims and Lukmanierpass, both have descent/flat sections in it so the average gradient doesn't really do it's justice.
The final climb will be anteceded, the run-up is a long valley road ascending to the foot of the final climb, which itself is set to be a brutal one. The San Gottardo Pass is 12.1Km at 7.3% is the opposite of the other climbs of the day, it's very constant throughout it's entirity and is considered one of the most beautiful climbs in the whole Alps.
No wind to be taken into account but the rain, yes the rain will be present once again, and tomorrow there's actual descending where it can make some damage.
Well it's a day that won't go to the breakaway for sure I'm assuming, unlike today there's some terrain where some teams would want to put a good pace, and INEOS will surely want a hard stage as today Rohann Dennis climbed brilliantly and is in an easy reach to take back the lead in the time-trial. Astana and Lotto Soudal must've also taken a lot of motivation today so there's a possibility of some help, but above all make the race hard (in INEOS' case) so that Bernal can reel in some more time, because arguing if he's the strongest doesn't give much room to imagination.
Pozzovivo will be following wheels mostly with Dennis' position, he won't want to benefit rivals, and Hirt is another rider who indeed looks great after the Giro, I had my doubts but he is as strong as he was some weeks ago. The cobbles in the climb aren't hard of course, but they may have a bit of effect and affect the lighter riders, some like Dennis and Benoot will like, also as it's a very constant climb and suits the Australian's engine.
Patrick Konrad and Marc Soler very solid today, Soler is another that will like the final climb's conditions tomorrow, Enric Mas had a bit of a slower climb but well within the overall fight, it's a case of seeing if he has better days, and Spilak who like the rainy days should also like, in case today he had a very bad day.
Outside of those there aren't true favourites, of those that were solid today are Roche, Aru, Henao, Carthy... But there was barely any footage of the peloton in the final climb there isn't much to analyze besides the times, but they're options for a good result tomorrow.
It's early and there's lot of riders in contention to assume who can go from a breakaway, Fabio Felline and Winner Anacona some nice names looking at the results and weather for tomorrow, but I don't believe that scenario for tomorrow.
⭐ Dennis, Spilak, Soler, Konrad, Mas, Felline
Wait didn't I say the same yesterday? Well I'm stubborn, I knew already Bernal was the strongest that was clear as water, today was favourable for a break despite the short lenght, but maybe tomorrow is his day.
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