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Stage 4 profile
Cameron Meyer says...
It goes straight up a hill so it's a good opportunity for people to attack and it becomes hard to control the start of the race so a group could get away. They've only got to get over Menglers and there's a downhill run into the finish which is very similar to the stage that I took the overall lead on last year. You've got to be careful of that happening again.
Menglers is a tough climb if the peloton hit it at full tilt. Normally you go over Menglers in three groups and it comes back together but there's always that chance that the front group is really strong and they stay away to the finish. It will come back to a bunch finish though. If I'm in a breakaway here I don't think they'll let me go as far. I think they'll reel me in a little bit earlier than what they did last year.
This is one for the strong sprinters. Someone who's got good early season form, someone who's not going to suffer too much on the climbs, they'll still get to the finish line with good legs. If it's a really hard stage a guy like Stuart O'Grady's got a really good finish on him, he handles the cross winds and as you've seen in Paris-Roubaix he has no problems with hard conditions so guys like that who are in really good condition and will be there at the finish.
Matt Goss says...
There are not many easy days. It doesn't really look like Paradise because we go straight uphill for about 10km and it looks nasty. This is going to hurt the legs because if it is a hard run in on the day before, especially for the sprinters who are going to push themselves quite hard to make the most of the stage where they can win. You've got a sprint quite early on too.
If it is still a close race and you've still got some of the stronger sprinters or all rounders who have a shot at the overall, their teams are going to want to keep this together for the sprint which is after around 20kms. The break will probably go on Menglers Hill and that's going to hurt. It will be pretty controlled through the middle part of the race and then caught again because this is where the sprinters are going to have a good chance to have a big gallop to the finish. The next day's Willunga so the sprinters will be pretty happy to leave everything on road this day and give it a real nudge and go into recovery mode the next day a little bit.
Image ©: Santos Tour Down Under