Tour De France

Tour de France Tips: 4/1 Pogacar might let 16/1 Carapaz go on Stage 11

Richard Carapaz and Tadej Pogacar at Tour de France
Carapaz (right) might be allowed freedom by Pogacar (left)

A backloaded, difficult route, writes Jack Houghton, that will suit a climber

What's the stage like?

Although not the highest mountains in France, the Massif Central often provides the most difficult Tour tests, with rapid successions of short, steep climbs on meandering, narrow roads. At 211km, this is a long and technical stage, with four of its six categorised climbs coming in the last 40km. The addition of time bonuses at the top of the second of those climbs - the Peyrol - will likely see the stage set alight early. Assuming a breakaway will be doomed on a difficult day, this is one for the General Classification contenders, or at least those riders whose once-real Yellow Jersey ambitions are already dead.

Who are the favourites?

Tadej Pogacar (5.04/1) is the obvious favourite and a worthy one if his intent is to win the stage. On the climbs in this Tour so far he has been unmatched, and if his UAE Team are on the front early, making it hard for any breakaway to gain the needed time, he's very likely to win. At the odds, he's worth having on your side.

Who are the most likely outsiders?

This stage couldn't be better designed for Richard Carapaz (17.016/1) - just look at the profile of his previous wins in grand tour stages - and he's over 19 minutes down in the General Classification, meaning no one will be bothered about chasing him down. He's been quiet since his stage win in the Tour of Romandie in April, but seems to be riding well in the Tour so far.

The market seems excited about the chances of Ben Healy (18.017/1), but this stage looks too hard for his skillset, and I would want far bigger odds than those to be interested.

For those wanting more speculative bets, better value is the likes of Pello Bilbao (60.059/1) and Giulio Ciccone (40.039/1). Both will relish the route.

How will it affect the overall markets?

This might be the day that Jonas Abrahamsen relinquishes the polka-dot jersey of the Mountains Classification to pre-Tour tip Tadej Pogacar, and it will certainly see movement in the General Classification: with two inert days to follow for the Yellow Jersey wannabees, expect fireworks.

Now read more Tour de France tips and previews here.

Recommended bets

Jack Houghton's Cycling Tips 2022-24 P&L:

Staked: 152.25

Returned: 176.9

P/L: +24.65


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