20 July 2013

Huge Day for Quintana!

Colombian Nairo Quintana and his Movistar Team had a monster mountain win today.  The 23-year-old climber not only dominated Mont Semnoz to reach the finish line first, he secured both the white and polka-dot jerseys AND now sits second overall, 05' 03" behind Chris Froome.  Nairo Quintana will be a major force to be reckoned with in future Tours de France!  Below is Quintana's time and the comparison with our prediction.
  • Stage 20:  3h 39' 04" (actual), 3h 45' 04" (prediction), 06' 00" slow (2.74% error)
We were worried that our time was going to be much too slow, but we had no need to worry.  We'll take another prediction under 3%!  Below is Quintana's average speed for the stage.
  • Stage 20:  9.510 m/s (34.24 kph or 21.27 mph)
Of the 170 cyclists who crossed the finish line, 25 (about 14.7%) beat our predicted time.  All the athletes should sleep well tonight after the past three days in the Alps.

The 100th Tour de France comes to an end tomorrow as Stage 21 takes riders between two famous cities.  Beginning in Versailles, cyclists loop south for a couple of short category-4 climbs before heading northeast to Paris.  The flat stage has a length of 133.5 km (82.95 mi).  The ride along the famed Avenue des Champs-Élysées toward the Arc de Triomphe will be a day to remember as the 100th edition of the world's most famous bicycle race reaches its climax.  Chris Froome should close the deal and give Team Sky two wins in a row.

The final stage is difficult to predict because so much of it is ceremonial.  There are some good sprints, and Mark Cavendish usually dazzles, but predicting how competitive the stage will be is tough.  Nonetheless, we offer our final prediction for this year's Tour de France below.
  • Stage 21:  3h 15' 47" (prediction)
That time might be a bit fast, but we are hoping to see some great racing in addition to all the pomp and circumstance.  Enjoy the final stage!

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