Date: Wednesday May 11
Distance: 174 km
The second and final Sicilian stage could unfold in a number of ways. There’s a big climb early in the stage that’s the perfect launchpad for a breakaway to get clear and ride away to contest the stage win. But that climb isn’t especially difficult, so if some sprinters are able to get over it in the main bunch, there might be enough impetus to chase down the break ahead of a sprint finish. Could be an interesting one.
Who’s it for: Maybe the breakaway, maybe the sprinters.
Dane Cash’s picks: This is another tough one to predict. If things come down to the pack, some familiar names will be among the favorites. The safest picks to contend on seem to be the slightly more versatile sprinters, with Caleb Ewan (Lotto Soudal) leading the way and Biniam Girmay (Intermarché-Wanty-Gobert Matériaux) and Mathieu van der Poel (Alpecin-Fenix) also strong candidates to win. If Mark Cavendish (Quick-Step Alpha Vinyl) makes it into the finale with the bunch, he’s probably the favorite, but there is some uncertainty there.
Arnaud Démare (Groupama-FDJ), Fernando Gaviria (UAE Team Emirates), Phil Bauhaus (Bahrain Victorious), and Giacomo Nizzolo (Israel Premier-Tech) are others to watch for in a fast finish.
Magnus Cort (EF Education-EasyPost) is a intriguing name in that he could win a reduced sprint, but also has experience getting into breakaways. Speaking of which, there really aren’t a whole lot of other obvious breakaway picks, but Thomas De Gendt (Lotto Soudal) is always worth of a mention.