Australia’s Caleb Ewan celebrates after crossing the finish line to win stage 11 of the Tour de France cycling race over 167.5 kilometers from Chatelaillon-Plage to Poitiers Wednesday, Sept. 9, 2020. (Christophe Petit-Tesson/Pool via AP)
- Stage 7 of the Giro d’Italia (Friday, May 14) likely will favor sprinters
- Friday’s course is mostly flat with hills in the middle and a short, steep climb just before a false-flat finish
- Where is the best betting value when looking for a stage winner in Termoli?
Tim Merlier and Caleb Ewan won the first two sprint stages of this year’s Giro d’Italia. Is the third sprint stage a match race between the rivals?
While Friday’s route from Notaresco to Termoli (6:50 am ET) has a little pizazz, it is likely a day for the sprinters.
Oddsmakers like Ewan’s chances (+225) in Stage 7, but he is far from a shoo-in. Let’s look at the odds and consider the top options.
2021 Giro d’Italia Stage 7 Odds
|Rider||Odds to Win Stage||Top-3 Finish Odds at DraftKings|
Odds as of May 13th.
Riders face a mostly flat 181 kilometre trek from Notaresco to Termoli on Friday. There is a category four climb about a third of the way to the finish, but the real fun comes late in the route. With under 2km remaining, there is a 150 meter long 12% gradient climb. The finish is on a false flat.
Gino Mäder won Stage 6 after breaking away with four other riders. He separated from the group with just over 3km remaining. Top GC riders led by Egan Bernal made a dash with 2km left. They gobbled up the original break with the exception of Mäder who got to the line 12 seconds ahead on the race’s top overall competitors.
Atilla Valter lost time on Thursday but remains in the overall lead holding an 11 second edge over Remco Evenepoel. Bernal is 16 ticks behind the leader. Aleksandr Vlasov is in fourth place 24 seconds behind Valter, and Louis Vervaeke is a second behind Vlasov in fifth position.
2021 UEFA Champions League Odds Tracker
This is what Ewan does. He has won sprint stages on each Grand Tour cashing in on his fourth daily triumph in the Giro on Wednesday.
While Ewan may be the most accomplished pure sprinter in the field, he isn’t dominant or untouchable. In 2019 he won three stages in the Tour de France and two at the Giro, but in no other year has he ever taken more than two days in any single Grand Tour.
Merlier lost the points lead in this year’s event when he broke a chain during Stage 5. The 28 year old from Belgium won Stage 2.
Merlier is having a terrific year. He has won the Bredene Koksijde Classic, Le Samyn, and Grote Prijs Jean-Pierre Monseré.
Peter Sagan is no longer the rider who dominated the points classification at the Tour de France for a decade. That said, with 17 individual stage wins on Grand Tours, he is always capable.
Sagan’s most recent big win came in last year’s Giro. The nuisance at the end of this stage is exactly the type of obstacle he is excellent at using to his advantage.
Veteran Giacomo Nizzolo came awfully close to his first individual stage victory on Wednesday, finishing just behind Ewan. He has twice won the points classification at the Giro.
Nizzolo is having a strong season too. He won the Clásica de Almería in February, and finished second in March’s Gent–Wevelgem.
At the conclusion of Stage 3 this year Elia Viviani apologized to Davide Cimolai for hitting him after the finish line.
This is what Viviani sort of apologised for in his interview.. threw an elbow at Cimolai pic.twitter.com/cYOMimeAFI
— Ian (@cyclingbetting) May 10, 2021
Neither has to be frustrated on Friday, because either could be a viable winner of the day.
Viviani has stage wins on each Grand Tour and last won one in the Giro in 2018.
Cimolai won the Vuelta a Castilla y León this year and took a stage on the Tour de Wallonie.
Dave Friedman has covered professional and college sports for two decades. From ESPN to the Associated Press, Regional Sports Networks, Metro Networks, and many local outlets, he has written about and broadcast major and minor events throughout the country.