Olympic Road Race (Saturday July 28th)
A little bit of histeria is surrounding British Cycling right now thanks to the domination of Team Sky, Bradley Wiggins, Cav and Froome at the Tour de France. But we must still remember that there are plenty of riders from other nations that will have their sights well and truly set on Olympic Glory.
One such individual is Fabian Cancellara, the multiple World Time Trial Champ, current Olympic Time Trial Champion and serial Classics Winner. He went home early from the Tour de France to be at the birth of his baby daughter but not before winning the prologue and showing some good form in the Yellow jersey. He is priced at 9/4 behind Bradley Wiggins to retain his Time Trial title, and you could argue that’s value. But I think he’s better value in the Road Race @ 14/1 e/w.
Looking at the market you’d think this is Cav’s race to lose, but he was about a 5/2 shot until recently which is probably a more accurate assessment of his chances. Don’t get me wrong if he gets to The Mall with the leaders he wins the sprint, BUT will there be a big bunch sprint?
Well Cavendish won the trial event last year over a shortened version of this course in a bunch sprint. They did the “Box Hill Loop” only twice in that event and they will go round NINE times for the real race this Saturday. I’ve ridden the loop several times myself and whilst Box Hill is essentially a very easy climb for these guys, the speed they will go up it and perhaps more crucially the speed at which they will go round the narrow lanes that approach it, could see the field decimated by the time they leave the circuit and head towards London. There will be attacks from the smaller teams and breakaway specialists out to make a name for themselves, Wiggins, Froome, Stannard and Millar will have their work cut out to keep this race together, that seems certain.
There’s 40km of flat to catch any breakaway after the circuits are done, which would ordinarily be enough, but by that stage of a very long and hard race there might not be much of a bunch, and the Brits that have spent all day keeping it together could have easily burned all their matches by that point.
The past five Olympic road races have been decided by breakaways and since no other cyclists in their right mind, excluding team mates of course, would work with Cavendish in a breakaway, he’s not going to be in one.
So whilst I’d love to see Cavendish win this from a personal point of view, I really think he is poor value at around Even money. Cancellara looks a solid each way alternative given his ability to be thereabouts at the end of hard races, and love of the Olympics.
Fabian Cancellara e/w @ 14/1 with Paddypower/Ladbrokes is my recommended bet.
You might also want to consider either looking at another “hard man” to take on Cavendish with, or alternatively just laying him on Betfair.
I’m travelling to watch the race myself and will be cheering on Cav, team GB and probably the mighty “Spartacus” (Cancellara) too!
If you’d like more cycling tips – there are umpteen more Olympic Cycling events with betting markets, then I suggest you strongly consider “Wheelie Bets”. I followed his advice during the Tour de France where he made a 20% ROI, Including finding one stage winner at 18/1. There’s a lot more cycling betting than you’d probably imagine as later this year there’s the Veulta (3 week tour) and the World Champs still to look forward to after the Olympics are done. To join email Wheelie ( firstname.lastname@example.org ) and request an invoice, the price is either 35 euro per month or 85 until the end of the season covering all events.
That’s all for now, but in case you missed it last week:
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