After a good day of rest in Limoges in Central France, the peloton will embark on its long journey towards the Alps, starting with 193 rather flat kilometres to Issoudun.
A perfect day for the sprinters to race back into the limelight. But could a French breakaway on the day of the 'Fête Nationale' spoil their feast? The finish line in Issoudun, home of Olympic track champion Kevin Sireau, will tell.
Jonathan Vaughters' views
Don’t know why they call this place Limousin, because I can assure you, riding around here is nothing like riding in a Limousine in Vegas. It’s up, it’s down, it’s up, it’s down, it’s up again….
Straight after a momentum-losing rest day, this is going to hurt. As the GC will be sorted quite a bit, some 95 percent of the peloton stand no chance of getting maillot jaune at this point, so breakaways wont be chased as fervently.
That said, everyone knows this, so 95percent of the peloton is trying to form a break, as they know they have a real chance of making it to the line.
This lends itself to a race pattern that takes a good 80km to finally get a break off the front. Attack after attack in the hilly, beef laden countryside of Limoges just hurts.
All this said, my bet is the break will try too hard to get out there in the first place and it comes back together for a sprint, with Mr. Cavendish winning.