Favorites stage 11 Tour de France 2024 | The Massif Central rarely disappoints Cycling

Favorites stage 11 Tour de France 2024 | The Massif Central rarely disappoints

Favorites stage 11 Tour de France 2024 | The Massif Central rarely disappoints

After a rest day and the stage towards Saint-Amand-Montrond, the peloton heads back into the mountains on the eleventh day of the Tour de France. In a stage of more than two hundred kilometers, the breakaway specialists will smell their chance, as opportunities become increasingly scarce as the race progresses. IDLProCycling.com guides you through it!

Route stage 11 Tour de France 2024

Favorites stage 11 Tour de France 2024 | The Massif Central rarely disappoints

The organizers of the Tour de France label this eleventh stage a "mountain stage," which is surely makes sense when you look at the numbers: 211 kilometers of racing, with 4350 meters of elevation to overcome. And these are almost all in the second half of the day, as the route cuts through the rugged Massif Central.

We start in Evaux-les-Bains, from where we have a fairly calm opening phase. At least on paper, because in practice it could be a fierce battle for the early breakaway. A successor needs to be found for Greg Van Avermaet, who won in Le Lioran in 2016 from an early breakaway in a similar finale. Opportunities for climbers, but certainly also for breakaway specialists.

Anyway, after 65 kilometers, we enter Bourg-Lastic, where the intermediate sprint of the day is located. A few kilometers later, the first hills appear: the Côte de Mouillox (1.9 kilometers at 6.3 percent) and the Côte de Larodde (3.8 kilometers at six percent). We do not expect these categorized climbs, due to their location, to have too much influence on the course of the race.

After that, the route keeps going a bit up and down, but from roughly 75 kilometers from the finish, it is mainly uphill. From Ydes, about five hundred meters of elevation need to be conquered towards Le Fagoux, where the tough Col de Neronne (3.8 kilometers at 9.1 percent) looms. There is not much time to recover, as the Puy Mary Pas de Peyrol (5.4 kilometers at 8.1 percent, but the last kilometer at 14.0 percent) follows shortly after.

After a descent of about fifteen kilometers, the Col de Pertus comes next, where Van Avermaet made the difference in 2016 against fellow escapee Thomas De Gendt. At the top of this climb, there are still fifteen kilometers to race to Le Lioran, mainly via the Col de Font de Cere. This stretch is not very difficult, but can definitely have an impact with a tailwind. The final kilometer in Le Lioran also goes slightly uphill.

Favorites stage 11 Tour de France 2024 | The Massif Central rarely disappoints

79.8 km: CÔTE DE MOUILLOUX (1.9 km at 6.3%)
89.7 km: CÔTE DE LARODDE (3.8 km at 6.0%)
168.7 km: COL DE NÉRONNE (3.8 km at 9.1%)
180.0 km: PUY MARY (5.4 km at 8.1%)
196.4 km: COL DE PERTUS (4.4 km at 7.9%)
208.2 km: COL DE FONT DE CÈRE (3.3 km at 5.8%)

Start: 11:30 AM
Finish: around 5:12 PM

Weather stage 11 Tour de France 2024

Towards the end of the afternoon, there is a chance of rain in the finish area at Le Lioran, where we are expected to arrive after what will likely be a long day. In the first two hundred kilometers, the wind will be (mostly) against the riders, but in the last ten kilometers, the direction will shift to a tailwind.

Favorites stage 11 Tour de France 2024

Surely this is a stage designed for attackers.. A long, tough stage with headwinds, but without major cols. The chances of teams like UAE-Team Emirates, Soudal Quick-Step, or Visma | Lease a Bike wanting to control the race are very slim to none, as there is still plenty to come in the next week and a half.

So, which category should we look at? The riders who are already further down in the general classification. Some riders were definitively knocked out on Sunday’s gravel stage and will now have to look for stage wins. Names that come to mind are Simon Yates (Jayco AlUla) and Richard Carapaz (EF Education-EasyPost).

The problem for these men is that the transition stage is relatively flat, meaning some luck is required to get into the day’s breakaway. Other pure climbers who like to attack, such as Romain Bardet (DSM-Firmenich PostNL), Louis Meintjes (Intermarché-Wanty), David Gaudu (Groupama-FDJ), and Tobias Halland Johannessen (Uno-X), will also face challenges. Bardet has teammates like Oscar Onley, Warren Barguil, and, of course, Frank van den Broek who can help.

van den broek bardet

With a bit more punch or endurance on the flat, you might have an easier time staying at the front. In this category, we include punchy riders like Tom Pidcock (INEOS), Maxim Van Gils (Lotto-Dstny), and Romain Grégoire (Groupama-FDJ), while riders like Ben Healy (EF Education-EasyPost), Kévin Vauquelin (Arkéa-B&B Hotels), Gregor Mühlberger, Oier Lazkano (Movistar), and Toms Skujins (Lidl-Trek) can rely more on their speed.

Looking at the GC contenders, this stage suits Tadej Pogacar (UAE-Team Emirates) and Remco Evenepoel (Soudal Quick-Step) significantly better than Jonas Vingegaard from Visma | Lease a Bike. With 25 riders within ten minutes in the general classification, some may use this stage to make a move, including all-rounders like Derek Gee (Israel-Premier Tech), Pello Bilbao (Bahrain Victorious), and Geraint Thomas (INEOS).

Finally, Wout van Aert mentioned that this stage could suit him as well, but he will likely need his Ventoux legs. The same goes for Michael Matthews (Jayco AlUla, remember Mende), the best version of Mathieu van der Poel, and/or Alberto Bettiol (EF) on one of his good days.

Favorites stage 11 Tour de France 2024, according to In the Leader's Jersey

Top favorites: Ben Healy (EF Education-EasyPost) and Simon Yates (Jayco AlUla)
Outsiders: Tom Pidcock (INEOS Grenadiers), Richard Carapaz (EF Education-EasyPost), Maxim Van Gils (Lotto-Dstny) and Romain Bardet (dsm-firmenich PostNL)
Long shots: Tadej Pogacar (UAE-Team Emirates), Remco Evenepoel (Soudal Quick-Step), Pello Bilbao (Bahrain Victorious), Derek Gee (Israel-Premier Tech), Kévin Vauquelin (Arkéa - B&B Hotels), Romain Grégoire (Groupama-FDJ), Oier Lazkano (Movistar), Tobias Halland Johannessen (Uno-X) and Toms Skujins (Lidl-Trek)

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