Tour de France: Stage 11 Preview: Eymet - Pau

Cyclist

Stage 11 of the 2017 Tour de France represents the the final flat stage before the field head into the Pyrenees on Thursday. 

Marcel Kittel will look to claim his fifth stage win today before the sprinters go into survival mode in the Pyrenees. The German barely broke a sweat as he beat his closest competitors to the line Bergerac.

Will anyone be able to deny the German yet another stage win today as we descend into Pau after 203.5 kilometres on a pretty tame stage? Let’s take a look:

To Win Stage
Marcel Kittel 6/10 | Andre Greipel 15/2 | Dylan Groenewegen 9/1 | John Degenkolb 14/1 | Alexander Kristoff 16/1

The Contenders 

Marcel Kittel 
It doesn’t look at this point like anyone can beat the German sprinter at the moment after yet another breezy stage victory on Stage 10. He left the rest of the sprinters in his wake as he powered over the line with what looked like minimal effort – he’ll take some beating here.

Andre Greipel
The big German just doesn’t look quick enough as he struggled to keep in touch with the rest of the sprinters as they powered toward the line. Greipel has looked out of sorts in the sprints this year and his poor showing on stage 10 doesn’t inspire confidence.

Rüdiger Selig
Selig was excellent on stage 10, pipping Sonny Colbrelli to the line, as our head-to-head bet lost out yesterday. He seems to be relishing his role as Bora-Hansgrohe’s main sprinter following Peter Sagan’s disqualification and has an outside chance of sneaking on to the podium this afternoon.

The Route

Today’s stage is about as benign as they come, which is probably a good thing for the field as we take to the Pyrenees tomorrow. There is a single category four climb today at the 145.5-kilometre mark, which will see the riders ascend the 1.2-kilometre long (4.2%) Côte d'Aire-sur-l'Adour.

The above climb will be preceded by the stage’s intermediate sprint at the 142.5-kilometre mark. Expect to see Kittel fighting hard for maximum points here, as he looks to maintain his hold on the Green Jersey before the likes of Colbrelli and Michael Matthews start to take points off of him as we head into the mountains.

Whatever happens today, we’re bound to see yet another bunch sprint to the finish in Pau. The last kilometre of the stage is pretty much all downhill until it levels out 100 metres from the line. Expect a fast, frenetic finish that will more than likely see Kittel extend his lead atop the Points Classification.

Verdict: Alexander Kristoff to finish ahead of Andre Greipel (match-ups) at 1/1
Greipel looked absolutely shattered after yesterday’s stage and simply couldn’t generate the power to keep up with the elite sprinters as he crossed the line in 12th. By contrast, Kristoff looked far stronger as he beat the likes of Boasson Hagen and Bouhanni into fifth – back him to finish ahead of Greipel today.

Value Bet: Rüdiger Selig 40/1
A bit of a long shot here, but the German showed yesterday that he can mix it up with the best. If he is to win today, he’ll need plenty of luck in the last kilometre. Still looks good value at 40/1 – small stake on.

Written by Jason Dewey for @Hollywoodbets.net

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