Tour de France 2012 stage 15 preview

Calm before the storm

Distance: 158.5km

Highest point: 324m

Category: Rolling

Rather than heading straight into the Pyrenees, this stage is flirting with them, bumping through the range’s foothills as it heads into Pau and the second rest day. There’s a string of climbs in the final third of the stage but they won’t knock all, if any, of the sprinters out of contention if the bunch is compact at that point. The teams that have failed to register any kind of success up to now will need to take advantage of days like this, especially if they don’t have an in-form climber in their ranks. Realistically, this stage and the one to come into Brive-la-Gaillarde will be their last chances to reap some kind of reward.

Allan Peiper: The question here is how many of the top sprinters can get over the climbs? Matt Goss is a really good climber so he should be there to contend the finish. Thor Hushovd on a good day could also win this stage. We’ll have to wait and see.

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Video: Tour de France 2012 stage 15 preview by Chris Boardman

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