After a much needed rest day, stage 17 picks up in the town of Berne, Switzerland were stage 16 finished. In the first day through the alps riders will travel primarily south and face three categorized climbs before summiting the Hors Categorie Finhaut-Emosson (10.4 km climb at an average 8.4% grade) to the finish. The first two climbs of the day are the category three Côte de Saanenmöser and Col des Mosses. The Côte de Saanenmöser tops out at 72.5 km and the Col des Mosses crests at 105 km, then features a long fast descent into Aigle. The penultimate climb of the day is the category one Col de la Forclaz at 13 km long and an average grade of 7.9%. After a very short descent riders will start the final climb to the finish up Finhaut-Emosson.
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|Avg. Pulling Yaw
There will be no repeat of Mount Ventoux where the course had to be shortened due to the wind. Forecasts follow the same trend as the last few days of the tour with very light wind and low humidity. The temperatures will be higher early, but drop to the low 20s as the road heads up the final two climbs. One thing to note is that the air pressure will be lower than it has been on previous days. That coupled with climbs that reach around 2000 meters will mean the riders will face a bit less air density on the day.
If anyone hopes to pressure Chris Froome this would be the day to start the attack. Because they are coming off a rest day it's doubtful an attack will stick, but it just might be enough to impact the stage 18 uphill time trial on Thursday. There are plenty of points up for grabs in the King of the Mountains race, so Majka, De Gendt or Navarro could push into early breaks. The real race for the GC riders will kick off up the category one Col de la Forclaz. If Movistar has anything in the tank they will need to make a move up the Finhaut-Emosson. The aggressors up Mt. Ventoux were Richie Porte and Bauke Mollema, so we expect it will be more than just Movistar applying pressure at the front. The Time Analysis tool shows there are some spots early in the course for a break to form right out of the gate, around the 9-10 km mark and between 17.5 - 25 km. On the final climb we can look at the power difference needed for similar times between a rider like Quintana and a rider such as Froome. Expect GC riders to take about 30 minutes to get up the last climb and cross the finish line.
Analysis was performed by modeling the peloton as a single rider using front of the pack drag characteristics and pulling power targets. Take a look at the entire race plan that was used for this analysis, which includes additional features, metrics and downloadable files.
Stage 17 Race Plan: https://www.bestbikesplit.com/client/44800