Stage 10: Saint-Flour – Albi
Date: July 15, 2019
Distance: 217.5 km
Stage type: Flat
The last time the Tour raced into Albi in 2013, Peter Sagan led in the bunch sprint ahead of John Degenkolb and Daniele Bennati. But that July day the race came into this UNESCO World Heritage-listed city from the flatlands to the south rather than the rugged, high plateaux to the north as this one does.
Four short categorised climbs lie ahead, the first a fourth-cat and the other three rated third-category, but there are constant undulations as the route heads through the beautiful, ancient volcanic wilderness of the Aubrac. The rolling of the terrain and the length of the stage will make it hard for the sprinters' teams to control the break.
This will suit today's coureur regional, Lilian Calmejane, who hails from Albi. The punchy leader of the Total-Direct Énergie team will already have had several opportunities to seek out a stage win, but will undoubtedly be holding something back for this final stage before the first rest day. It's perhaps not hilly enough to suit the Frenchman's qualities, but it would be no surprise to see him infiltrate the break and attempt to make the most of local knowledge.
Although Christian Prudhomme and Thierry Gouvenou have again offered hopeful escapees propitious terrain on which to extend their adventure all the way to the finish, the contenders for the green jersey will be determined to glean all they can from this stage that goes into Albi and the next one that departs it for Toulouse. In this edition that's a bonanza for peloton's flyweights, the sprinters have just two more opportunities beyond these stages. As a consequence, Jumbo-Visma, Deceuninck, Lotto-Soudal and UAE's rouleurs will be under orders to keep the break within range through the highlands and reel it in on the approach to Albi. Those rouleurs will appreciate the rest day as much as anyone.
Thank you for reading 5 articles this month*
Join now for unlimited access
Enjoy your first month for just £1 / $1 / €1
*Read 5 free articles per month without a subscription
after your trial you will be billed £4.99 $7.99 €5.99 per month, cancel anytime. Or sign up for one year for just £49 $79 €59
Join now for unlimited access
Try your first month for just £1 / $1 / €1
Latest on Cyclingnews
Titouan Carod wins cross country MTB World Cup at Mont-Sainte-AnneFrench champion dominates to take first elite World Cup cross country win, BMC teammate Filippo Colombo sprints to second
Live broadcasts cancelled for final three Life Time Grand Prix events in 2022Leadville Trail 100 MTB coverage reduced to social channels on August 13
Jolanda Neff wins cross country at MTB World Cup Mont-Sainte-AnneOlympic Champion joins select company with fourth win at Canadian event
'It is a pity, but it is a rule' says Vos of Vårgårda disqualificationCordon-Ragot has 'a mixed feeling' about her first individual Women's WorldTour victory