Tour de France stage 13 analysis: The art of the hustle

breakaway tour de france 2020 stage 13
The break of the day on stage 13 of the Tour de France (Image credit: Getty Images Sport)

The Tour de France is a complicated, many-layered mix of goals, aims, politics, tactics and strategies. Everybody has an agenda. Everybody is trying to find an angle. Everybody is hustling. As with life, doing things would actually be quite straightforward, except that everybody else is also trying to do things at the same time.

It's why sprints are messy. If cycling were like the 100-metre sprint, the riders would all start at the same time and be confined to their own lane. Out in the chaotic world of a Tour sprint, riders are all over the place, mixed in with their lead outs and their rivals, with 180km in their legs already, starting their final effort anywhere between 300 and 100m to go. 

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