07 July 2014

Kittel Makes It Two Out Of Three!

German Marcel Kittel just beat out Peter Sagan in a great sprint to end Stage 3 of the Tour de France.  Jan Barta and Jean-Marc Bideau battled each other for the lead for much of the entry into London.  The peloton eventually ate Bideau and then consumed Barta with about 6 km (3.7 mi) left in the race.  The image below is what I cropped from my video feed as Kittel crossed the finish line (click on the image for a larger view).

Below is Kittel's winning time and a comparison with our prediction.
  • Stage 3:  3h 38' 30" (actual), 3h 33' 10" (prediction), 5' 20" fast (-2.44% error)
Rain began to fall in London, though it didn't seem to affect speeds too much.  There was a crash just behind the leaders with about 1.7 km (1.1 mi) left, but I couldn't see if rain played a role.  Below is Kittel's average speed.
  • Stage 3:  11.823 m/s (42.56 kph or 26.45 mph)
Cyclists bid farewell to England and cross the Channel for tomorrow's flat Stage 4, which begins in the commune of Le Touquet.  The 163.5-km (101.6-mi) stage has a couple of category-4 climbs as it takes riders east to the city of Lille, which sits near the French border with Belgium.  Below is our prediction.
  • Stage 4:  3h 49' 16" (prediction)
We were a bit fast during the three stages in the UK.  We'll see if cyclists pick it up a bit when they get to France.

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