Stage 3: Round-up

Michael MoreCow (aka Morkov) showed us that he’s definitely the most aggressive rider in the tour so far by going out in the breakaway again today. Wearing the polka dot jersey, he proudly also displayed matching polka dots on his bike computer. Points were available for the first 15 over the intermediate sprint point and as the peloton, and the main contenders for the points jersey approached we saw a long lead out of GreenEDGE riders with Matty Goss at the end, but  it was all to no avail as Cav would.not.be.stopped and lectured on the way through – narky!

Things seemed to be settling into a chase rhythm then we had crashes, flat tyres, chaotic nervous riders, Gerro into some barbed wire, Sagan changed his bike, riders portaged their bikes around crash sites and Wiggo looked a bit sad to have *not* been caught up in a crash close to the line.

All in all – things are looking better for Cowdel and worse for Wiggo and GreenEDGE as the tour continues.

Sky’s in a bit of trouble really.

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Stage 3: Orchies > Boulogne-sur-Mer

So we enter France, finally! Today’s 197km stage looks to be fairly flat for the first half, but once the intermediate sprint is done at 119 km there are six categorised climbs to test the peloton, finishing with a Cat 4 at Boulogne-sur-Mer. The BBC Tour coverage hopes that Cav will be able to keep up with the leaders, however the Tour Guide has technical director Jean-François Pescheux saying

There is no chance of us seeing the sprinters in action at the finish… I think there will be lots of splits in the peloton.

In his column analysing Green Edge’s chances for sprint points, Rupert Guinness predicts that the sprinters will be aiming to be in the mix at the finish, with Peter Sagan a contender in a finish similar to his stage one win.  Whatever happens, at least we’ve seen from the last couple of stages that BMC is working really well for Cadel, and that perhaps the same can’t be said for rival Wiggins with his Sky team.

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