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Tour de France 2022 - Stage 11 preview

Stage 11:  Albertville to Col du Granon Serre Chevalier

Date: July 13, 2022

Distance: 151.7km

Stage timing: 12:15 - 16:40 CEST

Stage type: Mountain

Although only a few kilometres longer than the day before, stage 11 is in a totally different category. Two HC climbs mean that this is a crucial stage for the GC.

The first 46km from the start in Albertville, host of the 1992 Winter Olympics, are flat, but that’s all the relief the peloton will get. The hairpins of the second-category Lacets de Montvernier are picturesque, but the climb is unrelenting at an 8.2% average over 3.4km. And that is only the beginning as the Télégraphe-Galibier double whammy awaits the peloton after a brief respite.

Rising from the Arc river valley, the Col du Télégraphe climbs an average of 7.1% over its 11.9 kilometres. After the descent to Valloire, the first half of the 17.7-kilometre, 6.9% average Col du Galibier is less steady as it changes between steeper and gentler gradients. The last eight kilometres are more regular – but that doesn’t make the climb any easier as the gradient never falls below 7.5%, hitting 9 and 10% on the last two kilometres before the top.

A 33-kilometre descent provides a much-needed opportunity to recharge before the Col du Granon. With a 9.2% average over 11.3km, it is arguably the hardest climb of the Tour. The first five kilometres are the least hard as the gradient mostly stays below 9%. Kilometres five to eight climb at over 10%, followed by a kilometre with ‘only’ 8.6% and the final 2.3km at over 9%.

The Télégraphe and Galibier will probably reduce the peloton to a small size, with the GC contenders having only few, if any, teammates left at the start of the final climb. It will be every man for himself on the Col du Granon, fighting for seconds and possibly minutes in the general classification.

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