When Saturday, July 16
To Villars-les-Dombes Parc des Oiseaux
Impact on GC 1/5
After leaving Montélimar the riders head north, straight up the Rhône Valley to Lyon. The route dances around the edge of Lyon, before spearing off in a north-easterly direction to the finish.
More than likely there will be a headwind all the way today, because south is the prevailing wind direction in this part of the Rhône Valley. If the Mistral blows it will be a terrible slog. That makes it almost worth betting on this stage having a bunch finish.
It will be so hard to stay clear in a headwind. Headwinds also boost the effect of being in the peloton, where for highly conditioned Tour de France riders there will be moments when they can cruise a bit to save their legs.
Chris Froome (Sky) will be one of those happy if the day turns out to be steady-paced. He placed second in the previous day’s time trial behind Tom Dumoulin (Giant-Alpecin) to extend his overall lead. Bauke Mollema (Trek-Segafredo) moves up to second, and Adam Yates (Orica-BikeExchange) slips to third overall.
The sprinters will be hoping for a more straightforward stage too, having enduring the mountains and a long time trial.