Another opportunist's stage, this short romp into Le Puy-en-Velay offers a hilly parcours, with the main climb being at the 55.5km mark up the Col des Pradeux - 11.4km at 5.6%. Not much considering what they've been through beforehand, but enough to put plenty of hurt in the riders' legs and offer something for the sprinters if they can muster the energy to have a go at the intermediate sprints (of which there are two) and possibly take the stage win. Another great opportunity for someone like Giuseppe Guerini or maybe even Sandy Casar. It could happen. Francaise des Jeux's young Belgian Philippe Gilbert could come into calculations due to his classics pontential, but age may be against him at this late stage of the race.
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