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ATOC Stage 3 Pre-Race Chatter

Tour_of_cali_mediumIf today doesn't produce a breakaway, then I really don't understand the sport anymore. The fearsome Sierra Road starts at about km 8 -- so early that the riders will probably be seen vigorously warming up for a while before the noon start -- and long before the contenders or their teams will feel like doing any work. Also, Levi's ambush yesterday means the race's most animated team, Astana, will be in lockdown mode. But the first three hours will be up and down, so I wouldn't automatically assume that the sprint teams will manage to reunite the race for a sprint in Modesto. Oh, and the weather will mildly suck. This is an improvement. Discuss?