UnknownTDF - Stage 8 - Côte de St Priest en Jarez

Saint-Étienne with its surrounding hills. Photo by  Richard Weil  . Licenced under  Creative Commons

Saint-Étienne with its surrounding hills. Photo by Richard Weil . Licenced under Creative Commons

Stage 8 is another long day at 200 Km with seven categorised climbs along the way to Saint-Étienne.

The point of interest for Unknown Tour today is another uncategorised climb that tops out with exactly 2 Km to go on the stage. The route takes the Tour peloton along a wide main road towards the finish, adjacent to the Stade Geoffroy-Guichard, but at 3 Km to go it takes a sharp right hand turn off the main road that would take them to the finish line to take on a climb the locals know as Côte de St Priest en Jarez. For the Tour the climb is 700m long at 7%. If you follow the road to the right it continues for a further 300m with a 17.5% grade, the race instead goes left, starting the descent back to the main road. From here it is just over 2 Km to go, 1.1 Km of that being on the flat. Expect a battle for position turning onto the climb at 3 Km to go.

Subplot is a potential fight for the bonus seconds available on the last categorised climb of the day which the road book says averages 14.5% for the last 500m, but is more 8%. From the summit it is 12 Km to the line. Will Alaphilippe use it as a launch pad to get the 8 bonus seconds and continue on, potentially for another stage win? Exciting day ahead!

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