Except for a few hills the profile of the fifth stage mainly goes down. However, a bunch sprint in the stage that takes the peloton from Gap to Privas through the Ardèche is not self-evident.
The only climbs and the most difficult points are in the last 55 kilometers. The riders will go over the Rhône, where the infamous mistral, the powerful northern wind, can blow that can make it difficult for the peloton.
Two times fourth category
The two climbs of the fourth category don’t scare the sprinters by definition, but the final summit is only 16 kilometers from the finish. And that’s not to mention the treacherousness.
In Privas, where a stage finishes for the first time in the history of the Tour, the road goes up quite a bit until one kilometer before the finish. Can Caleb Ewan, Sam Bennett and Giacomo Nizzolo survive the uncategorized slope or are, for example, Peter Sagan and Greg Van Avermaet at an advantage?
Roundabouts, thresholds and winding roads
Moreover, the final kilometer doesn’t exactly invite for a bunch sprint like last Monday. Safety in cycling is high on the agenda again after some serious accidents in the last weeks. But in the evening stage Steven Verstockt, safety expert of the University of Ghent, told us that the final of today’s stage has a number of dangers.
“There are some difficulties in the last kilometre. A roundabout at 950 metres, one at 250 metres and a number of thresholds. There are also some bends in between. I wonder why they chose that last kilometre.”
Take a look at the analysis of Verstockt here:
The stage starts in Gap, which for the 26th time organizes a start or finish of a stage in the Tour de France. Last year Matteo Trentin won the stage which ended in Gap.
Herman van der Zandt talks about the liberation of the city in the Second World War: