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TDF Blown up in Stage 5! Or is it...

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TDF Blown up in Stage 5! Or is it...

Old 07-06-16, 03:35 PM
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TDF Blown up in Stage 5! Or is it...

I admit I know almost nothing!
I don't know how good Greg Van Avermaet is - I didn't find his name in TDF 2015 results, and TDF seems like a somewhat unique beast.

Isn't a 5 minute lead a HUGE lead?
Or do the climbers have so much advantage in the mountains that they can swallow it up?
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Old 07-06-16, 04:08 PM
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Depends on who's got the most powerful hidden motor.
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Old 07-06-16, 04:11 PM
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Five minutes would be a pretty big lead for one legitimate GC contender to have over another (though not necessarily insurmountable), but for someone like Van Avermaet it's insignificant, which is why they "let him go".

The dynamics of whether or not a breakaway gets chased down can be pretty complex, but generally the teams of the main contenders wouldn't even let someone who is a threat get into a breakaway. GVA and his co-conspirators looked pretty strong today, but the fact is that the main group could have chased them down if they felt it was important to do so. They just weren't able to chase him down without expending more energy than they were willing to expend today. Sagan losing yellow was pretty much inevitable, so there wasn't a lot of motivation to keep him from winning the stage and taking the yellow jersey. If it had been someone like Richie Porte up the road (ignoring for the sake of discussion the question of how he got there), you'd have seen a much different result.
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Old 07-06-16, 04:36 PM
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^^ Yeah, that sounds about right, to me. At one point, GVA's lead over the GC contenders was ~15 minutes - a bit too much. Movistar and Sky picked up the pace, to narrow that lead.

What we did learn in Stage 5 is who is NOT going to be in yellow. Nabili, for sure, and Contador is not looking very strong. Val Verde, Froome, Quintana, Alaphillipe, Aru, Van Garderen, Pinot, Bardet, and Rodriquez make up the GC race.
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Old 07-06-16, 05:05 PM
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Mark Cavendish is all washed up... NOT!
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Old 07-07-16, 12:11 PM
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No, not a big lead at all. Once they get to the real mountains the real GC contenders will rise to the top. He will probably lose it on the first real mountain stage. He will be working for either TJ or Richie anyway.

In the 2001 Tour, Francois Simon had over a 20 minute lead after the 9th stage. He was only able to hold onto the jersey for 3 stages once the big hills started.

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