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Épernay - Montargis, 185 km
A pretty interesting day for Chris today. The first five minutes of the race were incredibly fast and Chris had his best five minutes today. His best five minutes today was better than any of his five minute efforts from last years TDF. This really is exciting because 5 minutes is a key measurement of fitness in relation to Vo2 Max and typically when Vo2 Max is high, so is threshold power, so we could be in for some exciting numbers and stages in the mountains. Not only was the first 5minutes a very hard effort, but that extended into 20 minutes and his best 20 minutes of the day all happened in the first 20 minutes of the race. I can only speculate that he was charged with getting into the early break today and had to go with every move he could. He didn't make the break, so the rest of the stage was more about conserving energy and helping to pace near the front to keep Cancellara in the yellow.
The last 60 minutes of the race were pretty fast, but not that fast in relation to previous stages. Unfortunately, Chris was in the group that went the wrong way around the 'roundabout' near the finish and went from the head of the peloton to the back.... so he just sat up and rode it in. No sense in wasting energy after that miscue.
We'll check out Chris' power data from last year's TDF and compare it to this years in tomorrow's analysis!