7.02.2014

Tour de France Start List (Explained)


  • Team Sky: strong team built around one man - Froome - and one goal - the GC win. No sprinters, no breakers. Just one leader and 8 terrific helpers. In case, some options - Porte, Nieve, Thomas.

    • 1  Christopher Froome (GBr)
    • 2  Bernhard Eisel (Aut)
    • 3  Vasil Kiryienka (Blr)
    • 4  David Lopez Garcia (Spa)
    • 5  Mikel Nieve Ituralde (Spa)
    • 6  Danny Pate (USA)
    • 7  Richie Porte (Aus)
    • 8  Geraint Thomas (GBr)
    • 9  Xabier Zandio Echaide (Spa)
  • Movistar Team: strong team built around a strong leader - Valverde. But many possible goals: not only the overall - top five - but also stage victories - Visconti, Gadret... - and sprints - Rojas.

    • 11  Alejandro Valverde Belmonte (Spa)
    • 12  Imanol Erviti Ollo (Spa)
    • 13  John Gadret (Fra)
    • 14  Jesus Herrada Lopez (Spa)
    • 15  Beñat Intxausti Elorriaga (Spa)
    • 16  Jon Izaguirre Insausti (Spa)
    • 17  Ruben Plaza Molina (Spa)
    • 18  Jose Joaquin Rojas Gil (Spa)
    • 19  Giovanni Visconti (Ita)
  • Team Katusha: a complete and well balanced team, with a leader good for the GC but also for the Polka Jersey - Rodriguez - a strong sprinter - Kristoff - and a few riders able to break-away. 

    • 21  Joaquím Rodríguez Oliver (Spa)
    • 22  Vladimir Isaychev (Rus)
    • 23  Alexander Kristoff (Nor)
    • 24  Luca Paolini (Ita)
    • 25  Alexander Porsev (Rus)
    • 26  Egor Silin (Rus)
    • 27  Gatis Smukulis (Lat)
    • 28  Simon Spilak (Slo)
    • 29  Yury Trofimov (Rus)
  • Tinkoff-Saxo: Bennati has been a splendid sprinter but in the last years he committed himself to help Alberto Contador who is one of the main favourites in this Tour de France. All for one, and one for all: Riis' team is top level. It's going to be fun!

    • 31  Alberto Contador Velasco (Spa)
    • 32  Daniele Bennati (Ita)
    • 33  Jesus Hernandez Blazquez (Spa)
    • 34  Rafal Majka (Pol)
    • 35  Michael Mørkøv (Den)
    • 36  Sergio Miguel Moreira Paulinho (Por)
    • 37  Nicolas Roche (Irl)
    • 38  Michael Rogers (Aus)
    • 39  Matteo Tosatto (Ita)
  • Astana Pro Team: quite strong team built around a quite strong leader. In my opinion Vincenzo Nibali is not the main favourite of this Tour, not at the same level as Froome and Contador. He won a Giro in spite of a weak team, we'll see if the Tour squad can support him better. Kangert is very strong, the others... so so.  Many riders here are good breakers and stage victories are a good plann B. Not that Nibali would be happy with that: he goes to the Tour to win it. All can happen but it's going to be quite hard. 

    • 41  Vincenzo Nibali (Ita)
    • 42  Jakob Fuglsang (Den)
    • 43  Andriy Grivko (Ukr)
    • 44  Dmitriy Gruzdev (Kaz)
    • 45  Maxim Iglinskiy (Kaz)
    • 46  Tanel Kangert (Est)
    • 47  Michele Scarponi (Ita)
    • 48  Alessandro Vanotti (Ita)
    • 49  Lieuwe Westra (Ned)
  • Cannondale: Sagan targets the Green Jersey so the team is shaped for that goal, with a delux last man like Elia Viviani, able to take himself a sprint win. De Marchi should be the GC man... but how far can he go? he's almost alone...

    • 51  Peter Sagan (Svk)
    • 52  Maciej Bodnar (Pol)
    • 53  Alessandro De Marchi (Ita)
    • 54  Edward King (USA)
    • 55  Kristijan Koren (Slo)
    • 56  Marco Marcato (Ita)
    • 57  Jean-Marc Marino (Fra)
    • 58  Fabio Sabatini (Ita)
    • 59  Elia Viviani (Ita)
  • Belkin Pro Cycling Team: Bauke Mollema is the 'dark horse'  in the race. He's strong and committed, his team believe he can get the top result. He's a leader: team mates trust on him and are ready to sacrifice their personal goals to achieve the main result. Both he and his team are not at the same level as Froome and Contador but in my opinion he's in a better shape - and more focused - than Nibali. He's going to give it all (and his team needs a big result to find a new sponsor).

    • 61  Bauke Mollema (Ned)
    • 62  Lars Boom (Ned)
    • 63  Stef Clement (Ned)
    • 64  Steven Kruijswijk (Ned)
    • 65  Tom Leezer (Ned)
    • 66  Bram Tankink (Ned)
    • 67  Laurens ten Dam (Ned)
    • 68  Sep Vanmarcke (Bel)
    • 69  Maarten Wynants (Bel)
  • Omega Pharma - Quick-Step Cycling Team: It's complicated: Cavendish targets the Green Jersey so the team is shaped for that goal, with a super train including Tony Martin, Mark Renshaw, Alessandro Petacchi, Niki Terpstra... But are they really going to work for him? Bakelants and Kwiatowski are GC riders, the last one comes from a very good early season followed by a less brilliant period. The first one is also a skilled breaker.

    • 71  Mark Cavendish (GBr)
    • 72  Jan Bakelants (Bel)
    • 73  Michal Golas (Pol)
    • 74  Michal Kwiatkowski (Pol)
    • 75  Tony Martin (Ger)
    • 76  Alessandro Petacchi (Ita)
    • 77  Mark Renshaw (Aus)
    • 78  Niki Terpstra (Ned)
    • 79  Matteo Trentin (Ita)
  • AG2R La Mondiale: Bardet is a serious Tour contender, not a favourite but not a complete outsider because with him a French team hopes to get a top result in the main French race. It's ages since the last time that happened. AG2R is strong - they showed it in the last Giro, winning the Best Team Classification - and compact. With a bit of good luck...

    • 81  Jean-Christophe Peraud (Fra)
    • 82  Romain Bardet (Fra)
    • 83  Mickaël Chérel (Fra)
    • 84  Samuel Dumoulin (Fra)
    • 85  Ben Gastauer (Lux)
    • 86  Blel Kadri (Fra)
    • 87  Sébastien Minard (Fra)
    • 88  Matteo Montaguti (Ita)
    • 89  Christophe Riblon (Fra)
  • Garmin Sharp: Talansky just won the Dauphiné but Garmin should remember that happened also because Contador made a serious mistake... However the team is strong, they can compete for a top five result.

    • 91  Andrew Talansky (USA)
    • 92  Janier Alexis Acevedo Colle (Col)
    • 93  Jack Bauer (NZl)
    • 94  Alex Howes (USA)
    • 95  Benjamin King (Aus)
    • 96  Sebastian Langeveld (Ned)
    • 97  Ramunas Navardauskas (Ltu)
    • 98  Tom Jelte Slagter (Ned)
    • 99  Johan Vansummeren (Bel)
  • Team Giant-Shimano: Plenty of strong sprinters here and I'm not sure that's an advantage. Kittel and Degenkolb can both target the Green Jersey. The second one abandoned the Giro dued to illnness so the leader should be Kittel... but we'll see. Tom Dumoulin just won the Nat Champ.

    • 101  Marcel Kittel (Ger)
    • 102  Roy Curvers (Ned)
    • 103  Koen de Kort (Ned)
    • 104  John Degenkolb (Ger)
    • 105  Dries Devenyns (Bel)
    • 106  Tom Dumoulin (Ned)
    • 107  Ji Cheng (Chn)
    • 108  Albert Timmer (Ned)
    • 109  Tom Veelers (Ned)
  • Lampre-Merida: you would expect a different team to support the World Champion on his way to Paris... Costa won the Tour de Suisse and seems in shape to fight for the final victory but I don't see how this team could help him when things get serious. There are a few good climbers but obviously the team also targets sprints with Modolo and Cimolai: probably a more realistic goal. But Costa could still win a beautiful stage or the Polka Jersey and that would be nice wearing Rainbow.

    • 111  Rui Alberto Faria da Costa (Por)
    • 112  Davide Cimolai (Ita)
    • 113  Kristijan Durasek (Cro)
    • 114  Christopher Horner (USA)
    • 115  Sacha Modolo (Ita)
    • 116  Nelson Oliveira (Por)
    • 117  Maximiliano Ariel Richeze (Arg)
    • 118  Jose Rodolfo Serpa Perez (Col)
    • 119  Rafael Valls Ferri (Spa)
  • FDJ.fr: Another French team full of French talents but less compact and less focused than AG2R. There isn't one leader for the GC but many options and a sprinter like Démare who for sure can be let alone or asked to work for the climbers. Stage victories - on the mountains or at the sprint - are likely, a GC top ten... hardly.

    • 121  Thibaut Pinot (Fra)
    • 122  William Bonnet (Fra)
    • 123  Mickaël Delage (Fra)
    • 124  Arnaud Démare (Fra)
    • 125  Arnold Jeannesson (Fra)
    • 126  Matthieu Ladagnous (Fra)
    • 127  Cédric Pineau (Fra)
    • 128  Jérémy Roy (Fra)
    • 129  Arthur Vichot (Fra)
  • Lotto Belisol: Greipel targets the Green Jersey so the team is shaped for that goal. Van Den Broeck is the GC man but I suspect his time is over. Instead he and Tony Gallopin could compete for the Polka Jersey and try to win a stage.

    • 131  Andre Greipel (Ger)
    • 132  Lars Ytting Bak (Den)
    • 133  Bart De Clercq (Bel)
    • 134  Tony Gallopin (Fra)
    • 135  Adam Hansen (Aus)
    • 136  Gregory Henderson (NZl)
    • 137  Jurgen Roelandts (Bel)
    • 138  Marcel Sieberg (Ger)
    • 139  Jurgen Van Den Broeck (Bel)
  • BMC Racing Team: quite strong team built around a leader who's not so strong. As I said, Tejay van Garderen doesn't seem able to really fight for the victory, not even for a podium place. But I could be wrong.  Atapuma could target the Polka Jersey. Many riders here are good breakers and stage victories are a good plann B. 

    • 141  Tejay van Garderen (USA)
    • 142  Darwin Atapuma (Col)
    • 143  Marcus Burghardt (Ger)
    • 144  Amaël Moinard (Fra)
    • 145  Daniel Oss (Ita)
    • 146  Michael Schär (Swi)
    • 147  Peter Stetina (USA)
    • 148  Greg Van Avermaet (Bel)
    • 149  Peter Velits (Svk)
  • Team Europcar: Voeckler, Rolland and Gautier: three generations of French hopes. I dubt they can climb the GC but stage victories are possible and Rolland could target - again - the Polka Jersey.

    • 151  Thomas Voeckler (Fra)
    • 152  Yukiya Arashiro (Jpn)
    • 153  Bryan Coquard (Fra)
    • 154  Cyril Gautier (Fra)
    • 155  Yohann Gène (Fra)
    • 156  Alexandre Pichot (Fra)
    • 157  Perrig Quemeneur (Fra)
    • 158  Kevin Reza (Fra)
    • 159  Pierre Rolland (Fra)
  • Trek Factory Racing: Mhm... Stages victories - on the mountains and at the sprint - are possible and likely. The overall victory is almost impossible but they could achieve a top 10.

    • 161  Fränk Schleck (Lux)
    • 162  Matthew Busche (USA)
    • 163  Fabian Cancellara (Swi)
    • 164  Markel Irizar Aranburu (Spa)
    • 165  Grégory Rast (Swi)
    • 166  Andy Schleck (Lux)
    • 167  Danny van Poppel (Ned)
    • 168  Jens Voigt (Ger)
    • 169  Haimar Zubeldia Aguirre (Spa)
  • Cofidis, Solutions Credits: Another French team... devoted to the break-aways!

    • 171  Daniel Navarro Garcia (Spa)
    • 172  Nicolas Edet (Fra)
    • 173  Egoitz Garcia Echeguibel (Spa)
    • 174  Cyril Lemoine (Fra)
    • 175  Luis Angel Mate Mardones (Spa)
    • 176  Rudy Molard (Fra)
    • 177  Adrien Petit (Fra)
    • 178  Julien Simon (Fra)
    • 179  Rein Taaramäe (Est)
  • Orica GreenEdge: a stage victory is the goal they said and they are ready for break-aways and for sprints. Low profile this year...

    • 181  Simon Gerrans (Aus)
    • 182  Michael Albasini (Swi)
    • 183  Simon Clarke (Aus)
    • 184  Luke Durbridge (Aus)
    • 185  Mathew Hayman (Aus)
    • 186  Jens Keukeleire (Bel)
    • 187  Michael Matthews (Aus)
    • 188  Svein Tuft (Can)
    • 189  Simon Yates (GBr)
  • IAM Cycling: They are here because of Chavanel but I'd look to Frank and Wyss too. Realistic goals are break-aways and stage victories. It's a team quite strong in the mountains. The problem is: GC riders are going to fight for mountains stages in order to win the overall...

    • 191  Sylvain Chavanel (Fra)
    • 192  Martin Elmiger (Swi)
    • 193  Mathias Frank (Swi)
    • 194  Heinrich Haussler (Aus)
    • 195  Reto Hollenstein (Swi)
    • 196  Roger Kluge (Ger)
    • 197  Jérôme Pineau (Fra)
    • 198  Sébastien Reichenbach (Swi)
    • 199  Marcel Wyss (Swi)
  • Team NetApp-Endura: Some interesting guys here. Realistic goals are break-aways and stage victories. It's a team quite strong in the mountains. The problem is: GC riders are going to fight for mountains stages in order to win the overall...

    • 201  Leopold König (Cze)
    • 202  Jan Barta (Cze)
    • 203  David De La Cruz Melgarejo (Spa)
    • 204  Zakkari Dempster (Aus)
    • 205  Bartosz Huzarski (Pol)
    • 206  Tiago Machado (Por)
    • 207  José Joao Pimenta Costa Mendes (Por)
    • 208  Andreas Schillinger (Ger)
    • 209  Paul Voss (Ger)
  • Bretagne-Séché Environnement: Brice Feillu has never confirmed the high expectations he suscitated at his first Tour de France, nevertheless he's an attacking rider able to animate a break-away. Stage victories are hard - because on demand - but possible.

    • 211  Brice Feillu (Fra)
    • 212  Jean-Marie Bideau (Fra)
    • 213  Anthony Delaplace (Fra)
    • 214  Romain Feillu (Fra)
    • 215  Armindo Fonseca (Fra)
    • 216  Arnaud Gerard (Fra)
    • 217  Florian Guillou (Fra)
    • 218  Benoit Jarrier (Fra)
    • 219  Florian Vachon (Fra)

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