After nine stages the Tour de France has the first rest day today. Time for us to analyze the first days of this Tour de France.
The Tour started with a stage win of Fernando Gaviria. The Colombian of Quick Step took the win in the first stage he started in the Tour, just like Fabian Cancellara in 2004. Big favourites Froome, Porte and Quintana lose some time to the other favourites due to bad luck. A day later Peter Sagan shows that he’s the best when it’s a little bit hilly. The world champion also took the yellow jersey for the second time in his career.
The first real contention for the favourites was the team time trial on stage 3. BMC won the stage and Greg Van Avermaet takes the yellow jersey over from Peter Sagan. The team of the favourites Movistar (Quintana, Landa & Valverde), Bahrain – Merida (Nibali), AG2R-La Mondiale (Romain Bardet) lose almost a minute on the rest of the favourites.
The two days after the time trial was a copy of the first two days, besides that Greg Van Avermaet holds the yellow jersey. Fernando Gaviria won stage 4 in the sprint, and stage 5 was a little bit hilly so Sagan took the victory. Stage 6 goes to Mur de Bretagne were Irishmen and former Liege-Bastogne-Liege winner Daniel Martin took the win with an attack two kilometres from the finish line.
Stage 7 and 8 go to Dylan Groenewegen. The Dutchmen, who won the last stage in last years Tour de France, has bad legs during the first stages but show us why he’s winning so much this season. He proved that at this moment he’s the fastest sprinter in the pack.
Yesterday, John Degenkolb won the stage at Roubaix. The German, who had won Paris-Roubaix in 2015, defeated yellow jersey Greg Van Avermaet and Yves Lampaert in the sprint after escaping from the pack at 20 kilometres from the finish line. Richie Porte has to quit because of a broken collarbone at the beginning of the stage.
The Tour goes further in the Alps. Tomorrow they have a finish in Le Grand-Bornand after the downhill of the Col de la Colombière. A day later, a short 108,5-kilometre stage to La Rosière Espace San Bernardo and the last in the Alps is to L’Alpe d’Huez, with during the stage the Col de la Madeleine and the Col de la Croix de Fer.
After the first nine days, the favourites except for Tejay van Garderen and Richie Porte stand a minute and a half from each other. The next three days will decide who has a chance to make it to the podium in Paris and who goes for stage wins at week 3.
A few riders have suffered a crash during the stage to Roubaix, with Rigoberto Uran and Mikel Landa Meana as hardest victims. Also, Bauke Mollema has crashed and woke up today with pain in his back.
**** Chris Froome, Vincenzo Nibali
*** Alejandro Valverde, Nairo Quintana, Tom Dumoulin
** Geraint Thomas, Romain Bardet, Rafal Majka, Jakob Fuglsang
* Adam Yates, Mikel Landa, Primoz Roglic, Bauke Mollema, Steven Kruijswijk, Rigoberto Uran