The Giro d’Italia had a very tight finish in Stage 4, and Stage 6 on Thursday could be similar. Photo by @cyclecollective (Twitter).
- Stage 6 of the Giro (Thursday, October 8) seems likely to end with a sprint finish
- During what has been a disappointing 2020, is this finally the stage Peter Sagan wins?
- When Sagan has been among the favorites, there has often been value with other sprinters.
Here we go again. For three weeks at the Tour de France, fans and bettors waited for Peter Sagan to act like the rider we have become used to. The guy who bagged 12 individual stages and seven green jerseys never appeared. The biggest news around Sagan in Paris was when he was penalized for interfering with Wout Van Aert during a sprint finish.
Sagan is among the favorites to take Stage 6 of the Giro d’Italia. His recent results indicate that, if his odds are short, there must be value elsewhere in the field.
Let’s look at the updated numbers, discuss the route, and suggest some candidates who may win the day on Thursday, Oct. 6th.
2020 Giro d’Italia Stage 6 Odds
|Rider||Odds to Win Stage 6|
|Thomas De Gendt||+2000|
Odds as of Oct. 7.
On Wednesday, there was no major movement among GC contenders while Stage 1 time trial winner Filippo Ganna was part of the initial breakaway, staved off multiple attacks, outlasted his the other early challengers, and held off the GC riders who were coming hard late. As expected, it was a hard day to predict.
While the overall standings look similar to how they appeared before the stage, second place Jonathan Caicedo cracked on the big climb and lost 16 minutes. João Almeida now leads Pello Bilbao by 43 seconds with Wilco Kelderman 48 seconds behind the leader’s pace. Harm Vanhoucke is 59 seconds back and Vincenzo Nibali is 61 ticks behind Almeida.
Stage 6 takes the riders 188 kilometres from Castrovillari to Matera. While the majority of the climbing on Thursday is during the opening half of the race, the only categorized uphill occurs 30 kilometres from the finish. Once the category three climb concludes, there are about 10 kilometers remaining, which are on a false-flat uphill. Though breakaways could succeed, it is considerably more likely that a sprint will decide the day.
Even though Sagan has eaten bettor’s money recently, it does not mean he isn’t viable in any sprint stage. This is just the type of course, with a little climbing leading to the likely sprint, that he tends to do well in.
Despite being among the most prominent riders of the last decade, and enjoying tremendous success, it is impossible to think taking a short price on Sagan is good value right now. His recent results simply don’t justify it. Thankfully, if money goes on Sagan, odds on others are boosted.
Arnaud Démare won Stage 4 of the Giro but his victory was upstaged by race favorite Geraint Thomas crashing and having to abandon.
Démare added to his resume with the victory. He has won two individual stages in the Tour de France and earlier this year took the Tour de Wallonie.
Michael Matthews has a little bit of Sagan in him. He figures in any sprint, and has a history of victories. Matthews has won stages of all three of the grand tours.
Much like Sagan, Matthews is known for winning sprints but enjoys stages that have small challenges, minor hills or climbs that set up the final burst. He won August’s Bretagne Classic, and was third in the Milan–San Remo this year.
Diego Ulissi has won seven Giro stages in his career and though he certainly isn’t talked about like Sagan, he is very viable.
Ulissi beat Sagan this year in Stage 2 and he offer some value.
Fernando Gaviria is an accomplished rider who doesn’t get discussed a lot. He has won two Tour de France stages, and five times taken individual daily honors in the Giro.
The points classification winner in Milan in 2017, Gaviria is having a good season. He won the Giro della Toscana, and has stage victories this year in the Vuelta a San Juan, Vuelta a Burgos, and Tour du Limousin.
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.