Stage 14 race report

Plenty of lumps on the stage today and perfect for the rouleurs to open up the legs on their terms. And so it was, with 3 riders going early before the group swelled to 18 riders at the 40km mark. The group had some quality legs in it including Bak, Burghardt, Van Garderen, Bakelants, Voigt, Vichot, Kadri, Brutt, Rojas, Trentin, Millar, Talansky and Albasini. This was one that might finally stay away for the day.

And there were no arguments from the peloton apart from Lampre and Euskatel, who unfortunately aren’t in the same league as Quick Step, Belkin et al in the bus driving stakes and struggled to keep the break in check. After an hour of toiling Sky took over affairs at the front and following some false tempo the gap started moving upwards.

In all of this Cunego and Hoogerland tried a delayed attack to get across to the break. WTF were they serious?? They must either have felt really bad about their Tour so far or got a rev-up from the DS on the radio.

One of the most enjoyable things to watch is a large break coming into the finish of the race. The race takes on the form of many of the road races in Australia: 15-20 riders with maybe a teammate or two. Hence – we can see ourselves in the race, envisioning what will happen next and acknowledging with admiration when the winner has done so with mind and legs.

And so, with 25km to go the fireworks in the break started. Albasini started it with Millar quickly countering once he was bought back. From there to the Cat 4 at the 16km mark it was a whole lot of tentative rolling, chatting and nervous looking back.

Once we hit the climb Bakelandts attacked but was bought back again. However Millar was dropped taking the advantage away from Talansky. Then Simon attacked, a rather muted attack, but an attack nonetheless and soon he had time up his sleeves.

And then the break just sat up, no one wanted to chase. Simon soon had 20 seconds and this spurred Kadri, some serious class, to try and bridge across. If he got there it was game over for the rest of the break.

On the final climb Simon had 25 seconds and the French fans by the road were absolutely losing it. Could they actually win a stage at this Tour? Back in the break Kadri had been bought back and riders were continuously countering each other rather than working together.

With 7km to go Simon had 15 seconds. It was going to go to the wire! The break had started working but once the attacks started again it broke it up and gave Simon the buffer he needed.

With 5km to go Van Garderen and Kadri got off the front and were working but once they were caught the games started again! The break had had their chances and now you sensed that Simon deserved the win. “WHO DARES WINS!” and Simon had dared.

Heartbreakingly, with 1km to go Albasini managed to bridge to Simon with Geschke and Burghardt also getting on with about 800m to go. Then Bakelandts reached the leaders and as the rest of the break were about to make contact Bakelandts took the offensive and went to the right. Albasini got across to Bakelandts and then opened up the sprint and quickly got a good gap. A winning gap. Coming into the final 50m though you could see his goose was cooked and Trentin came through at the last moment to take the stage! Another amazing stage with some scintillating racing in the last 30km. Amazingly this was the first win by an Italian at the Tour in 3 years!

Stage 14 tipping report

These are the worst stages from a tipping perspective. You tip perfectly for 13 stages…and then a break of 20 goes up the road and you’ve tipped conservatively since you don’t want to lose time. But that’s not good enough and all of a sudden you’re relegated to 250th. It’s a cruel cruel cruel world.

Predictably, nobody had selected Trentin, so it was Albasini for the win: David Blom, Ron Klajnblat, David Ellis, Plamen Stoyanov, Shaun O’Vonnor, GP Domestique, David Williams, Clinton Bebb and Trent Perry all backed the second place finisher. Sensational! A smattering of others gained serious time with Rojan, Bak, Vichot, and Bakelants. Darren Waters and Peter Exner had Burghardt and TJVG respectively. Nobody else bothered with BMC, but it would appear they have been let off the leash? All told, some 45 tippers stuck the break…

…which means we have new leaders!!! Borja Barbesà come on down! Borja backed Vichot and that was enough to see him sail clear of all adversaries. He’s 10 seconds clear of James D. After that, however, it’s a full four minutes back to Ron Klajnblat in 3rd.

The rest of the top 10 consists of Neil Mylott, Buds Fuller, Daniel Howitt, Dane Cash, Nick Lothian, Guthrie Finlay Collins and Brett Mckenzie. The gap to 10th is 5:22, so we’ve finally established a credible lead…just in time for Ventoux.

Plamen Stoyanov takes contol of the Sprint comp with 320 points. Luke McDermott is on 313 and James Deane has fired another blank but sits comfortably on 310.

Plamen Stoyanov and Tom Wakeling are equal first in the KOM with 49 points. There are seven tippers on 48. This will change has we have some 18 categorised climbs in the next few days. My godfather.

Right. We’ve got another cracker of a stage tomorrow before a relaxing rest day. Tip Well. Or at least better than we do…

Stage 14 visual representation of rider times

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General Classification tipping ladder top 50 after stage 14

Position Name Time Sprint KOM
1 Borja Barbesà  2 day(s), 07:17:33 170 0
2 James D  2 day(s), 07:17:43 214 3
3 Ron Klajnblat  2 day(s), 07:21:50 245 3
4 Neil Mylott  2 day(s), 07:22:41 249 30
5 buds fuller  2 day(s), 07:22:41 262 30
6 Daniel Howitt  2 day(s), 07:22:46 147 20
7 Dane Cash  2 day(s), 07:22:47 209 20
8 Nick Lothian  2 day(s), 07:22:55 270 30
9 Guthrie Finlay Collins  2 day(s), 07:22:55 204 30
10 Brett Mckenzie  2 day(s), 07:22:55 207 31
11 Andrew Clark  2 day(s), 07:22:57 95 21
11 Chris Harmer  2 day(s), 07:22:57 95 21
13 Keith Wong  2 day(s), 07:23:21 265 25
14 Michael Janetzki  2 day(s), 07:23:23 195 31
15 Aaron Leavy  2 day(s), 07:23:26 192 31
16 Craig McCulloch  2 day(s), 07:23:37 241 31
17 Andrew Irwin  2 day(s), 07:23:46 181 20
18 Tim Lawrence  2 day(s), 07:23:46 207 30
19 brenton thain  2 day(s), 07:23:46 182 30
20 james monahan  2 day(s), 07:23:54 164 22
21 Allan Weatherley  2 day(s), 07:23:57 177 28
22 Rhys Buzza  2 day(s), 07:23:57 96 28
23 Simon Haydon  2 day(s), 07:24:08 264 20
24 Jonathan Bertram  2 day(s), 07:24:15 152 18
25 Rowan Smith  2 day(s), 07:24:26 245 0
26 Zachary Houvener  2 day(s), 07:24:26 192 1
27 Matt Robbins  2 day(s), 07:24:37 182 20
28 Jackson Ankers  2 day(s), 07:24:40 238 0
29 Lukas van der Steen  2 day(s), 07:24:40 226 26
30 Michael Pettingill  2 day(s), 07:24:40 185 5
31 Adam Levin  2 day(s), 07:24:40 168 25
32 melanie neumann  2 day(s), 07:24:46 136 1
33 Ian Hood  2 day(s), 07:24:47 161 0
34 Carl Kinsella  2 day(s), 07:24:49 135 31
35 Dominic Lefebvre  2 day(s), 07:24:51 209 25
36 Marthijs Heuperman  2 day(s), 07:24:56 127 31
37 Paul Mapp  2 day(s), 07:25:01 178 0
38 Paul Neumann  2 day(s), 07:25:01 137 1
39 Dan Enright  2 day(s), 07:25:05 132 28
40 Sam Dwyer  2 day(s), 07:25:09 85 21
41 Paul Le Fevre  2 day(s), 07:25:14 162 6
42 Col Bell  2 day(s), 07:25:15 182 1
43 Samuel Yeoman  2 day(s), 07:25:16 59 26
44 Rob Mcgauley  2 day(s), 07:25:28 160 7
45 Simon Heppleston  2 day(s), 07:25:29 233 0
46 Angus Forbes  2 day(s), 07:25:32 166 0
47 Ben Jones  2 day(s), 07:25:38 123 1
48 Ben Baba  2 day(s), 07:25:45 123 0
49 Andrew Craig  2 day(s), 07:26:01 178 2
50 Michael Cincotta  2 day(s), 07:26:02 159 28

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