Stage 14 – 2011 Tour de France

July 16, 2011

We’re still in the Pyrenees and today’s biggest climb – Plateau de Beille – falls right at the end of this 168.5KM stage.

What’s going to happen? A complete and utter shattering of the field is what I see. While there might be a small break or two early…desperate moves by riders who know they’ll be off the back when the peloton gets to the mountains…we’re all going to see either Sammy Sanchez or Cadel Evans (or maybe an inspired Ivan Basso) rock the race to its core with an unrelenting attack on the field up the HC Plateau to the finish.

Here are a few of today’s updates I’ve gotten from my friends at Versus and Eurosport…

20 riders took off early in a breakaway 

Cadel Evans had to stop and get a bike replacement even before the live broadcast began 

There are multiple chase groups between the 20 leaders and the peloton, which is 4:50 behind with 140KM to go.

As I sit here typing, I wonder if it’s ever worth the money to buy the Versus “all-access” package for the Tour de France. Mostly because the Eurosport broadcast doesn’t start much before (if at all before) Versus. So the only thing all-access might offer you is no commercials and live feed. I’ll research this for next year and will let you know if I find out sooner. I just can’t see spending $30 for something that’s free and off of my clock by 5 hours – making it a great program to grab on DVR and time-shift it.

More coming in a bit…