Daily prediction – Stage 7

Who will win Stage 7?

After the fun and games on the Mur de Bretagne, it is back to fast-and-fast. A day for the pure sprinters, one of two before Sunday’s brutal showdown into Roubaix. Or so it should be… this could well be a day for the break.

The sprinters’ teams had a hard day yesterday – it was been Dimension Data, Quickstep and Bora-Hansgrohe in particular showing their noses to the wind – and with a teensy bit of reluctance, a strong break might well have a chance. BMC would certainly be happy to let it go, and keep the Yellow Jersey another day, stress-free. Let’s not forget the potential for echelons in the last 50km, either, as the predicted wind could cause some more chaos for the favourites… quite a lot to look forward to for such a simple stage.

But who will make it into the first day away in 2018? Dimension Data will be keen… so maybe Julien Vermote will be there, maybe even Jay Thomson. The three wild-card teams will all make it – Chavanel again? Jerome Cousin is the likely rider to go with Chavanel (Direct Energie does look to double-up in the breaks). There is only a single point available for KOMmers, so that is unlikely to play a role, so we won’t see Smith in the mix this time… maybe. So, from Wanty let’s look at Guillaume Martin, joined by our pick for the win today, Nicholas Edet from Cofidis.

That is presuming the bunch doesn’t close the break down, in which case today might be the day for Andre Greipel to finally get the timing right and get one over Gaviria and Sagan. Yes, we are sitting on the fence, a little. It will be one of those days.