Tour de France Odds, Picks, and Best Bets for Stage 7

Sam Bennett riding with a mask on

Sam Bennett is leading the Green Jersey race at the Tour de France and may be closing in on a stage victory. Photo by @cyclecollective (Twitter).

  • Stage 7 of the TDF (Friday, September 4) sets up to be the fourth sprint finish this year
  • Each sprint thus far has seen wildly different results
  • Will wind or a couple substantial climbs lead to a longshot victory on Friday?

Everything that the Tour de France has become known for has taken place in the first week this year. We’ve seen the traditional sprint finish, the GC favorite winning a climbing stage, and Thursday brought a breakaway that succeeded.

We knew a breakaway in Stage 6 was possible, and another on Friday wouldn’t be crazy. Conditions could lead to something funky too, but that said, Stage 7 appears to be a pretty straightforward sprint stage.

In a shocker to nobody, if there is likely to be a sprint finish in 2020, Caleb Ewan and Sam Bennett are the favorites. Are they the best bets?

2020 Tour de France Stage 7 Odds

Rider DraftKings Odds to win Stage 7
Caleb Ewan +250
Sam Bennett +300
Cees Bol +625
Wout Van Aert +800
Mads Pedersen +1000
Giacomo Nizzolo +1400
Peter Sagan +1600
Alexander Kristoff +2500
Elia Viviani +3300

Odds as of Sep. 3rd.

With serious climbing coming up on Saturday and Sunday before Monday’s first rest day, Friday’s 168 kilometres from Millau to Lavaur looks fairly easy to project. The biggest question is wind in this blustery region, plus category three and four climbs near the middle of the stage could be opportunities for the breakaway.

Stage 6 went to longshot Alexey Lutsenko, who broke away with seven other riders, and survived to the finish. Surely others will try to breakaway on Friday.

Three sprint finishes thus far have led to an upset by Alexander Kristoff in the rain, Ewan’s spectacular burst in a headwind, and Wout van Aert capitalizing on a false flat.

Adam Yates remains in the yellow jersey, three seconds ahead of race favorite Primoz Roglic, with Tadej Pogacar seven seconds back in third place.

The Favorite

In horse racing, handicappers talk about the “speed of the speed.” Identifying the horse who can get to the front and dictate the race has value.

In cycling, having the quickest burst and the power to explode at any moment is incredibly helpful. Ewan is the sprinter with the most tools. He is the favorite and should be. Ewan demonstrated why in Stage 3.

As quick as Ewan is, simply possessing the top speed is not enough. You need to get a good setup, time your final move, and have good racing luck. In Stage 5, Ewan got going too late and threw in the towel knowing that he wasn’t going to catch van Aert.

The question is not about talent, it is whether you want to take the low price in a medium that has a lot of variables.

Contenders

If Ewan is the best pure sprinter this year, Sam Bennett is a close second. The green jersey leader, signifying he has accrued the most points for sprinters (you can get sprint points by being among the top one, two, three, four, or five riders at pre-designated spots on the course each day) looks to be in terrific shape and has been very competitive at every major sprint along the way thus far.

The 29-year-old has won stages on each of the other two grand tours and it is just a matter of time in the Tour de France, though he may be more focused on dethroning Peter Sagan for the green jersey this year than he is all out to win a stage.

Wout Van Aert is a three-time cyclo-cross world champion who has won stages of the Tour in back-to-back years.

Having won a stage the other day, Van Aert is clearly riding well and may go all in on Friday before the pain of the mountains comes this weekend.

Longshot

After becoming the first Danish cyclist to win the World Championship road race title, 24-year-old Mads Pedersen is in his first Tour de France.

Pedersen suggested the first stage could fit him well, and he finished second. This profiles like another stage he could easily target.

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Dave F.

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