Criterium International 2013 Stage 3 Preview

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Featuring six categorized climbs, and ending atop the first-category l’Ospedale summit, Criterium Internatinal’s third and final stage will be the decider of this year’s winner.

Last year, on the same stage, it was Cadel Evans defending his yellow jersey after his Stage 2 TT victory, and in 2011 when it was the opening stage of Criterium International, Frank Schleck won it with a 20 seconds margin.

Team Sky’s Richie Porte and Chris Froome, BMC’s Cadel Evans and Tejay Van Garderen, Garmin-Sharp’s Andrew Talansky and AG2R’s Jean-Christophe Peraud will be the main riders to watch on the l’Ospedale climb.

GC Before Stage 3

1. Richie Porte (Aus) Sky Procycling 2:11:53
2. Manuele Boaro (Ita) Team Saxo-Tinkoff 1″
3. Tejay van Garderen (USA) BMC Racing Team
4. Christopher Froome (GBr) Sky Procycling 2″
5. Andrew Talansky (USA) Garmin-Sharp 7″
6. Jean-Christophe Peraud (Fra) AG2R La Mondiale
7. Bob Jungels (Lux) RadioShack Leopard
8. Andreas Klöden (Ger) RadioShack Leopard 9″
9. Jerome Coppel (Fra) Cofidis, Solutions Credits 11″
10. Bauke Mollema (Ned) Blanco Pro Cycling Team

Col de l’Ospedale Profile

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Paris-Nice 2013 Preview – Stage 5

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The 5th stage of Paris-Nice, Châteauneuf-du-Pape / La Montagne de Lure etappe on 8th March, Friday is the queen stage of the race. To win Paris-Nice, you have to shine on Sunday’s time-trial but you can very well lose it here. The final climb is a grueling 13.8 kilometre-long climb at 6.6%, which should actually be categorized as HC in grand tour standards.

The stage is almost identical to 2009′s Stage 6, which was won by Alberto Contador over Frank Schleck by 58 seconds. There are 8 riders now who are less than 10 seconds behind race leader Andrew Talansky, and with the time bonuses, the winner of this stage will most probably also wear the yellow jersey. It’ll be a though day for Talansky, with so many riders so close in the GC, he’ll need to retaliate a constant wave of attacks within an elite group, and a passive defending mindset may mean the end of his yellow jersey dream.

The Final Climb

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