Stage 3: Nijmegen -- Arnhem, 190km
Back to Arnhem, but more importantly, back to Italy right afterwards.
What's It About?
A reverse of Saturday's course, but veering out to the northeast, Gelderland farmland, before returning to Arnhem. Words of the day will be things like "polder" and "Edam" when not ogling lovely castles.
About the same as #2: 190km, some brief lumps, and a race ending in a sprint. Well, probably -- there is a tough ramp inside the final 10km:
And your map:
Not much to add. It's a reverse repeat of the day before. The only real significance will be the riders' demeanor, changing from "let's all enjoy our time in the Netherlands" to "let's get the hell out of Dodge so we can get to sleep before 3am." Yep, it's international transfer day. Oh, and the finale in Arnhem includes two circuits, each including a 360-degree pivot involving a tunnel, so it might be a little less comfortable than Saturday's version.
Riders to Watch
Same list of sprinters. They won't have any more or less incentive, with things getting more complicated for them upon returning to Italy, and I don't think a short, steep ramp at 10km to go will make any difference.
AmyBC's Food and Drink Pairings
Each stage will feature some alcohol and edible suggestions from our international food and wine writer AmyBC. You can check out her blog at Winebookgirl.
Alcohol: Batavia Arrack van Oosten
Getting a little creative here. Batavia Arrack is a Javanese/Dutch distilled spirit made from sugarcane and fermented red rice. The spirit, which was traded by the Dutch East India Company, was especially popular in the heyday of the "Punch"--between the late 17th and 19th centuries. A lot more here.
Food: Old Amsterdam Cheese.
Aged for 18 months and coated in black wax, this pasteurized cow's milk cheese is firm, dark yellow in color, and has a robust nutty flavor with a lingering sweet finish.
Pick to Win
Ah... let's go with Arnaud Demare. Why not?