23 July 2011

A bit fast on Stage 20 ...

Here is the result from today's individual time trial:

  • Stage 20:  55' 33" (actual), 51' 06" (prediction), -04' 27" fast (-8.01% error)
Just like with Stage 19, I was 8% too fast on the penultimate stage.  I guess Stage 16 convinced me that I needed a little more power -- a little too much it turned out.  Here is what Tony Martin was able to average in his win today:
  • Stage 20:  12.75 m/s (28.5 mph)
To answer my question from yesterday, "Yes, the Schleck brothers can be stopped!"  Let's hear it for Australia!!!  Cadel Evans came from down under to sit atop the cycling world.  Australia will surely celebrate its first Tour de France winner after tomorrow's ride into Paris.

The last stage is always the hardest to model.  I can take the terrain data and predict what a top cyclist would do.  The last stage, however, is usually not as hotly contested as previous stages.  This year's final stage is rather short at just 95 km (59 miles).  Here is my prediction:
  • Stage 21:  2h 27' 40" (prediction)
I have dialed the power input back quite a bit.  Will Mark Cavendish win his third straight Tour de France final stage?  Were the final stage fought as hard as possible, I'd probably lop 15 to 20 minutes off the above time.  But, I am trying to predict what will happen, so I am going with the slower time.

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