In the peloton, many riders already this weekend were only talking about the cobblestones, their difficulty, their dangerousness, etc. They are not wrong, but the challenge that awaits them does not come until Wednesday. In the meantime, from this Tuesday, the 4th stage of the Tour de France drawn between Dunkirk and Calais could cause movement at the head of the peloton and a possible curb scenario (breaks caused by the wind). With, ultimately, a few trapped leaders. We grant you, it is not acquired at all, and the recent history of the Tour (Saturday in Denmark) has shown us that it is better to remain cautious. After all, that’s all the magic of the Grande Boucle, of those morning chimeras…
But all the same. According to the latest weather trends, the wind from the North should blow between 15 and 25 km/h tomorrow on the Opal Coast. Far from being a storm, therefore, but sufficient, especially if the gusts start there, to allow the peloton to split up in the final. Locals, by the way, think that this day can hurt a lot of people. And it is said that Thierry Gouvenou, the plotter of the Tour, considers this day as one of his great finds of the Tour this summer.
READ ALSO. The profile of this 4th stage.
Dunkirk – Calais, “a very tricky day”
“It’s going to be a very tricky day, told us this weekend Alain Deloeuil, sports director of Cofidis and from the North. Everything will depend on the wind. And if the wind is there in the final, it will be hard to manage. It’s the seaside, it’s the type of stage we’ve already done several times on the
Four days of Dunkirk, and each time there were runners from everywhere… Even if they are beautiful roads, it could be complicated. »
READ ALSO. At what time and on which TV channel to follow the 4th stage live?
Stage 4 of the Tour de France 2022, a route with formidable potential
Thierry Gouvenou, therefore, the technical director of the Tour, believes in the formidable potential of this day. In particular because before the final towards Calais, five fourth category climbs are on the program.
The stage was traced in the mountains of Flanders and Boulonnais. We are going to climb hills, cross windy plateaus, and we have a lot of changes of direction. Many runners skipped this stage, but it could lead to surprises. A well organized team could already make a good attack on this kind of course.
READ ALSO. Wind, cobblestones, explosive week ahead
Before the finish: “the probability of curbs exists”
The key moment could be around the ascent of the Cap Blanc-Nez coast, 11 km from the line. Either just before, during, or just after. The peloton will then have a side wind at that time, and some may decide to beef things up. “ On the finish, when we go to turn on the coast, the probability of edges exists if the wind blows strong enough, thinks Alain Deloeuil. In the rise of the Blanc-Nez, it is not hard enough for attacks to take off, but it will stretch the peloton, and behind in the descent, it can be made full throttle by the first and that can cause breaks. We dive back to Sangatte, we are exposed to the wind, the peloton will line up, it risks breaking into several groups…”