The battle for Tour de France supremacy between race leader Andy Schleck and defending champion Alberto Contador will be decided in the Pyrenees, according to Garmin-Transitions manager Jonathan Vaughters.
Vaughters, a former climbing specialist who once held the record for the fastest ascent up the feared Mont Ventoux, expects the Luxembourg challenger to fiercely test Contador over the four daunting Pyrenean climbs.
“(The Pyrenees) are going to be hard this year, the deciding point of the race, that’s for sure,” Vaughters said. “I bet it will go one way or another, like Schleck will gain more time or Contador will bring that all back.”
Vaughters expects Contador to keep his title, especially because the penultimate stage of the Tour is a time trial, which favors the Spaniard. Schleck leads by 41 seconds overall.
“I would still say Contador,” Vaughters said. “I just think he’ll come better in the Pyrenees, and he’s a better time trialer.” Alberto Contador, right, chats with race leader Andy Schleck during the 11th stage of the Tour de France on Thursday.