The peloton will retrace their steps from the previous stage, heading back up the category 1 Independence Pass en route to Breckenridge. The route out of Aspen is quite a bit steeper than the previous day's ascent, and will likely be an opportunity for a breakaway to get clear as the overall contenders try to conserve for the following day's time trial. The race detours from stage 3 after Twin Lakes, heading through Buena Vista and Fairplay for intermediate sprints on the way to the other side of the Tenmile Range from the previous day's start. They'll head over the category 2 Hoosier Pass at 23.6 and category 3 Boreas Pass with 3.9km to go before dropping down for the finish in Breckenridge. At 202.5km, it is the longest stage of the race.
Mike Creed says:
This is a great stage for a breakaway to make it to the line.
Problem 1… It has to be a break of guys who are far enough down the leaders team will let them roll. So, guys who are eating their ass on the climbs.
Problem 2… the race starts with another trip up Independence Pass, the steep side. A guy who is just a big dumb ox can do it. Jens [Voigt], while not being a dumb person, has admitted he doesn’t always know why he attacks and they’re not alway logical. He won a stage very similar to this one a few years ago. It's a good stage for Daniel Eaton, Robin Carpenter, or Tom Skujins and the 12 Caja Rural guys.