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Tour de France Stage 5 Betting Preview

The team time-trial in Stage 4 saw another good result for us as Orica GreenEdge won the stage by just 0.75 seconds ahead of Omega Pharma Quick-Step. A magnificent effort from Svein Tuft in particular was enough to drive them to a time of 25:56 and just pip Omega Pharma Quick-Step, who performed much better than I expected. A monstrous shift from the injured Tony Martin toward the end showed the character and ability of the man and the team deserves plenty of credit.

On to Stage 5 and the peloton leaves Cagnes-sur-Mer, tackling four categorised climbs before finishing in the city of Marseille. It is a bit of a lumpy stage, but I suspect it will still come down to a bunch sprint.

Tour de France Stage 5

The first categorised climb is Cote de Chateauneuf-Grasse and this is where the breakaway will likely form. It is the only third category climb of the day with the other three climbs classed as category four climbs. The final climb up Cote des Bastides is a relatively gentle climb and the sprinters should be able to stick with the peloton and contest the finish. There is a sharp left-hand turn around 500-600m from the finish, so position will be key, but the sprint teams should be well-drilled enough to keep their men in position.

Naturally, in any sprint stage, the first man to look at is Mark Cavendish. He was caught up behind the crash in the first stage and was dropped in stages 2 and 3, so he is yet to contest a sprint finish. He will be desperate to get involved here, particularly as it is one of the stages that I pinpointed before the race as crucial in the battle for the green jersey. He has been suffering from bronchitis as well, but says that he is still not 100% fit.

His green jersey challenger Peter Sagan has also had a below-par start to the Tour. Caught up in the crash in Stage 1, he has not looked happy since, struggling to show his true pace in the sprint finishes so far. Fully fit, you would never have expected him to be beaten by Simon Gerrans, and it is tough to confidently back him until he has shown that he is back to his best.

So, with those two struggling, we need to look at some other potential winners. Simon Gerrans won Stage 3 and, after Orica GreenEdge won the TTT today, morale must be sky-high in the camp. However, I am not convinced that this is a stage where Gerrans will go for the win. He is unlikely to be quick enough to beat the pure sprinters, and his team are likely to concentrate on holding onto the yellow jersey. While they may go for the sprint, I would suspect that it is likely to be Matt Goss that they work for, or possibly Daryl Impey, as opposed to Gerrans.

This brings us to the two Germans – Andre Greipel and Marcel Kittel. Kittel won stage 1 almost by default when he found himself as virtually the only top sprinter left ahead of the crash. He is certainly in good form and will be eyeing up a second stage win, and potentially a leading role in the battle for the green jersey. Andre Greipel hasn’t had a chance to impress yet – indeed his biggest role so far was to cause the crash in the first stage. However, he came into the Tour in great form with victory in the German national road race and is the bookmakers’ favourite to win this stage.

Andre Greipel
Andre Greipel is the favourite to win Stage 5 of the Tour de France

The other sprinters will all be there or there abouts, but have really yet to prove that they can win a stage against the elite. The likes of Aleksander Kristoff, Nacer Bouhanni and John Degenkolb will certainly contest the sprint, but I would be surprised if they were to win it.

Looking at a couple of outsiders now, the leading French hopes are Julien Simon and Samuel Dumoulin. Julien Simon has been in the top 10 in two stages so far and will look to push for a podium spot, while Dumoulin finished sixth in the first stage.

Michal Kwiatkowski has performed well so far, but one would imagine that he will work for Mark Cavendish in this stage, rather than going for glory himself, while the young Danny van Poppel earned himself a well-deserved podium place in the first stage.

This is a particularly difficult stage to call with plenty of doubts around the leading sprinters and questions over which sprinter certain teams will work for. Andre Greipel is probably the rightful favourite, but it is hard to be confident in backing him at the current price.


1. Andre Greipel
2. Mark Cavendish
3. Marcel Kittel
4. Peter Sagan
5. Julien Simon

Recommended Bets

Mark Cavendish @ 5/1 (William Hill)
Marcel Kittel @ 12/1 (SportingBet)
Julien Simon @ 50/1 (Paddy Power)

Recommended Match Bets

Julien Simon to beat Francesco Gavazzi @ 2.05 (Pinnacle)
Marcel Kittel to beat Danny van Poppel @ 13/18 (Bwin)
Andre Greipel to beat Mark Cavendish @ 5/6 (Paddy Power)

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