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Tour de France: Can Australia end 12-year wait for a winner?

Jonas Vingegaard and Tadej Pogacar are the hot fancies to win the 2023 Tour de France, but Australia have a couple of strong contenders who will attempt to spoil the party.

Cadel Evans became the first Australian to win a grand tour in 2011 when he won the Tour de France and now both Jai Hindley and Ben O’Connor would love to emulate him.

However, it is fair to say that the duo face a much sterner test than Evans did 12 years ago, simply because Vingegaard and Pogacar appear to be streets ahead of the rest of the general classification contenders.

It is a long three weeks though and anything can happen during that time, so do not write off the Aussie boys ending the 12-year drought.

WhatTour de France 2023
WhereSpain and France
WhenSaturday 1st July to Sunday 23rd July, 2023
How to watchSBS
OddsJonas Vingegaard 1.83, Tadej Pogacar 2.50, Jai Hindley 13.00

The top dogs

Without a doubt both Vingegaard and Pogacar are the best general classification riders in the race.

If they make it to Paris without any drama, then one of these two will be wearing the yellow jersey and will be crowned the winner of the 2023 Tour de France.

Vingegaard is priced at 1.83 to win the Tour de France while Pogacar can be backed at 2.50.

Vingegaard won the 2022 Tour de France and is looking in fine shape to defend his crown following a smooth preparation.

He won the recent Criterium du Dauphine with ease. Hindley and O’Connor were in the same race and although they performed well, they were nowhere near the Dane time-wise.

O’Connor did podium but finished two minutes and 56 seconds behind. Hindley was fourth, three minutes 16 seconds behind the winner.

That is a big gap over a one-week stage race and Vingegaard is likely to be even stronger over three weeks.

Pogacar, who has been battling back from a broken wrist and will head into the Tour de France with limited race action.

However, he won the Tour de France in 2020 and 2021 and knows how to get the job done, so the lack of action will not harm him too much.

Jai Hindley

Outside of Vingegaard and Pogacar, Hindley is being tipped as the best of the rest and is priced at 14.00 to go on and win the Tour de France.

Hindley already has one grand tour under his belt when winning the Giro d’Italia in 2022 and now makes the step up to the Tour de France.

Making the podium would be seen as a huge success for the Western Australian, but he should be ready to pounce if anything should happen to the two hot fancies.

Hindley has proven he can mix it with the best and finished fourth at the Criterium du Dauphine, which is the traditional lead-up race to the Tour de France.

Not only that, Hindley will have the support of a very strong looking Bora Hansgrohe team, who will look after him and protect him throughout the three-week tour.

Ben O'Connor

AG2R Citroen star O'Connor is among a handful of riders who will be looking to podium and possibly win the Tour de France if anything unfortunate happens to the main yellow jersey contenders.

O’Connor is priced at 41.00 to go all the way and win the 2023 Tour de France and he has already shown his pedigree in the race.

In 2022 O’Connor managed to win a stage of the Tour on his way to a fifth-place finish in the general classification standings.

Again, like Hindley, O’Connor has looked strong at the Criterium du Dauphine when finishing third and will be looking to carry that form into the Tour.

Can an Australian win the Tour de France?

Barring illness and crashes it is hard to see anyone else other than Vingegaard or Pogacar winning the Tour de France.

However, that is not to say it cannot happen and both Hindley and O’Connor are top-class riders and are capable of winning the Tour if the top two encounter problems.

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