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Tour de France

Who will win the Tour de France? Which sprinter will dominate? The VeloNews team’s predictions

We take a trip to the speculation station and ponder the big questions ahead of this year's Tour.

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Everyone has their own predictions, opinions, and speculations ahead of a race as big as the Tour de France.

Also read:

Here’s a wrap of the VeloNews editorial team’s takes on this year’s Tour ahead of the Friday grand départ:

Sadhbh O’Shea

This is the Slovenian that Sadhbh is bcking. (Photo: DAVID STOCKMAN/BELGA MAG/AFP via Getty Images)

Who are your top three for the podium in Paris?

  1. Primož Roglič
  2. Tadej Pogačar
  3. Geraint Thomas.

The third time has to be the charm for Roglič, and Pogačar feels like he’s due some bad luck. Meanwhile, Thomas looks to be in great shape at the moment and that long time trial at the end of the race will suit him.

Who will be the surprise package for GC?

I’m going to go for Louis Meintjes. Once a very promising rider, he lost his way in recent years. However, his sixth-place finish at the Dauphiné shows he’s in very good form and could see him get back into the mix in the Tour’s GC.

Which of the sprinters will dominate?

I could go leftfield with this one, but I won’t. Fabio Jakobsen feels as though he’s the man to beat in the sprint competitions. He’s been far and away the most dominant sprinter this season and he’s got a full team to back him up.

Who will win the other jerseys?

If his knee isn’t troubling him then Wout van Aert is a very strong contender for the green jersey. He will be able to get into the mix on the pure sprint days but also has the climbing legs to go for some of those tougher intermediate sprints. For the mountains competition, I think that whoever wins the race will take home the polka-dots, too, though someone like Michael Woods could give them a run for their money. For the young rider classification, it’s going to be tough to beat Tadej Pogačar.

What do you think of the route and which stage stands out the most?

I like the route, I think it’s a pretty balanced one and the mountain stages are well spread out to drip feed us those high-altitude battles. With a long time trial at the end, the more pure climbers are going to have to put in some big attacks, which should make things interesting. As a lover of the classics, I’m really looking forward to the cobbled stage 5. Stage 11, which features the brutal summit finish on the Col du Granon will also be a very interesting stage to watch.

What else are you looking forward to?
I’m looking forward to seeing how the likes of Jumbo-Visma and Ineos Grenadiers try to bump Pogačar off the top spot of the podium. I am also curious to see how some of the riders who enjoyed a bit of a breakthrough in 2021, like Ben O’Connor, back up those past rides. Lastly, Mathieu van der Poel lit up the Giro d’Italia and I’m fascinated to see what he does at the Tour de France.

Andy Hood

Hoody is cheering for Caleb in the bunch kicks. (Photo: Tim de Waele/Getty Images)

Who are your top three for the podium in Paris?

  1. Tadej Pogačar
  2. Primož Roglič
  3. Jonas Vingegaard

Who will be the surprise package for GC?

Aleksandr Vlasov

Which of the sprinters will dominate?

Caleb Ewan

Who will win the other jerseys?

KoM: Tadej Pogačar
White: Tadej Pogačar
Green: Wout van Aert

What do you think of the route and which stage stands out the most?

It’s the most balanced route of the past few years, with more TT kilometers and the cobbles to spice things up. Week one will prove decisive in that anyone losing time there has no hope. The Pyrénées and final TT will crown the winner.

What else are you looking forward to?

It will be interesting to see if the might of Jumbo-Visma will be enough to knock Pogačar off-balance. Ineos Grenadiers and Bora-Hansgrohe should make things even more interesting because both will be racing more aggressively with nothing to lose. There’s more depth at the top, so it won’t be a cakewalk for Pogačar.

Daniel Benson

COPENHAGEN, DENMARK - JUNE 29: Neilson Powless of United States and Team EF Education - Easypost during the Team Presentation of the 109th Tour de France 2022 at Tivoli Gardens in Copenhagen City / #TDF2022 / on June 29, 2022 in Copenhagen, Denmark. (Photo by Tim de Waele/Getty Images)
Hopes are high for Neilson Powless. (Photo: Tim de Waele/Getty Images)

Who are your top three for the podium in Paris?

1. Tadej Pogačar
2. Aleksandr Vlasov
3. Geraint Thomas

Who will be the surprise package for GC?

Neilson Powless

Which of the sprinters will dominate?

Fabio Jakobsen. He has the best leadout in the race, hasn’t put a foot wrong all season, and has the entire team working for him. Granted, it’s his first Tour de France, and you can never tell if a rival sprinter has found their perfect form just before the Tour, but the Dutchman feels like a safe bet for at least two stage wins.

Who will win the other jerseys?

White: Tadej Pogačar
Green: Wout van Aert
KoM: Tadej Pogačar

What do you think of the route and which stage stands out the most?

The first week looks brutal. Coupled with the whole COVID-19 situation we could reach the second week of the race with an entirely different makeup to the Tour than the one many are expecting. Overall, it’s a balanced route with plenty of stages for the climbers to sink their teeth into but the first week, with the cross-winds, cobbles, and likely crashes will determine how the rest of the Tour plays out.

What else are you looking forward to?

If Pogačar is anywhere near his best then the race could turn into a procession very quickly. I’m looking forward to seeing how teams that don’t have GC aspirations tactically approach the race. Last year wasn’t a competition for yellow but there were plenty of subplots throughout the race.

Jim Cotton

Jim will be watching for the back to back stages in the Pyrénées. (Photo: Tim de Waele/Getty Images)

Who are your top three for the podium in Paris?

1. Primož Roglič
2. Tadej Pogačar
3. Aleksandr Vlasov

Who will be the surprise package for GC?

Aleksandr Vlasov! Although is he no longer a surprise?

Which of the sprinters will dominate?

Fabio Jakobsen. He’s got the team, he’s got the form, he’s got the confidence. I’m not sure Caleb Ewan can match him right now.

Who will win the other jerseys?

White: Tadej Pogačar
KoM: Primož Roglič
Green: Wout Van Aert

What do you think of the route and which stage stands out the most?

The back-to-back summit finishes in the Pyrénées could be crucial. Two consecutive short and explosive stages in the mountains so late in the race (stages 17 and 18) could make or break a lot of yellow jersey ambitions. And I know it’s a predictable answer, but the cobblestones of stage 5 will be the “must watch” stage of the race.

What else are you looking forward to?
Seeing what Netflix do with the race in their show. And watching how far Geraint Thomas can go. Will Ineos back him? If so, is he in range of a top-5?

Andy McGrath

Can Bora-Hansgrohe carry its Giro momentum to France?

Who are your top three for the podium in Paris?

1. Tadej Pogačar
2. Jonas Vingegaard
3. Daniel Martínez

Who will be the surprise package for GC?

Neilson Powless, if he gets the freedom. Andreas Leknessund will surprise a few people too.

Which of the sprinters will dominate?

Fabio Jakobsen. His team is committed to that goal and he’s the on-song sprinter.

Who will win the other jerseys?

KoM: Michael Woods
Green: Wout van Aert
White: Tadej Pogačar

What do you think of the route and which stage stands out the most?

A little front-loaded: there are enough flat stage pitfalls and tough Alpine stages in the race’s first half that I fear it could be all over bar the shouting by the time we leave the Alps. Especially if Pogačar has the bit between his teeth. Stage 11 has stunning scenery and three very tough climbs in the Télégraphe, Galibier and Granon. It should see fireworks.

What else are you looking forward to?

Roglič and Vingegaard asking pressing questions of Pogacar and his team. The continuing emergence of Bora-Hansgrohe as a GC team and how a confident, in-form Vlasov fares. Ineos Grenadiers using guile and strength in numbers – perhaps in the race’s first week, with their powerhouses – to steal a march on rivals.