Highest point: 1,046m
Category: Medium mountains
This stage is not unlike the one bagged by Sylvain Chavanel at Les Rousses in 2010. There’s no summit finish but there are seven climbs in just 157km and the last three all have very testing sections. It would be no surprise to see Chavanel and partner-in-crime Jérôme Pineau in the break today, perhaps with a few other French hopefuls who can climb well and can offer a decent sprint on the drag up to the finish – Sandy Casar and Pierrick Fédrigo, for example. The final ascent of the Col de la Croix is a chance for the climbers. The summit is only 16km from the finish. A good descender might fancy his chances too.
Allan Peiper: We did some of the stage in Romandie and it is a hard one. The roads are not easy and they’re also quite technical. It will be the type of stage that will suit Sylvain Chavanel if a breakaway goes with some good climbers.
Video: Tour de France 2012 stage 8 preview by Chris Boardman