clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

Tour de Suisse: Eight Snorefests and a Time Trial?

Tds_mediumNot to go all negative, but I'm struggling to say much about the Tour de Suisse that should make people want to watch eight of the nine stages that begin tomorrow. Sure, there's climbing that should shake up the GC, including a sharp uphill finish on stage 2 at the Flumserberge, and stage 6 which opens with a wicked ascent of the Nufenenpasse and a finish at the Verbier ski station. But while there will be opportunities for ambitious Swiss to quest for glory, and a chance for Tour hopefuls to stretch their legs, none of it means much, except for one stage. This race, all nine days, is all about the Klausenpass Time Trial:


A 25km chrono that starts up and just keeps going. I can't seem to locate any data, though I thought I saw something on the Steephill.TV dashboard that said 10%. Anyway, it's very long for an uphill time trial, and it's going to hurt. Even the Official TdS site admits this: "C’est au Klausen que se décide le TdS 08." It's at the Klausen where the race will be decided.

Not a bad place for fans either:

Klausenpass_medium  Klausenpass2_medium

Yikes. There are no epic stages of multiple, hors categoire climbs where anyone can put several minutes into their challengers; the other climbs will scatter the field by seconds or a minute-plus. The Klausenpass will detonate the field.

Not sure who's showing up to win. Andreas Klöden will be in the house, but his form is unpredictable, to say the least. There are Tour hopefuls in Damiano Cunego, both Schlecks, Stijn Devolder, Thomas Dekker and Kim Kirchen. Plus Ricardo Ricco, supposedly. But it's hard to see anyone killing themselves two weeks before heading to Brittany. As usual. As for homeboys, Alex Moos is always in the mix, as will be Rubens Bertogliati and Michael Albasini. Jens! is always one to watch. Peruse the startlist by team over at the official site and see what you can devise.

One sad note: the lack of a flat ITT means Fabian Cancellara won't get to strut his stuff. Guess he'll just have to make his competition in the Suisse nats ITT pay all the more. If I were a betting man...