Tour of Oman 2014: stage five – five observations

Froome, Team Sky, Preben Van Hecke, fixture congestion...and July

Froome at the top

If Chris Froome is to win races in such convincing fashion throughout 2014, we’ll have to invent new superlatives. Put simply, no-one came close to matching the defending champion on stage five’s finish at the summit of Green Mountain. BMC Racing’s Tejay Van Garderen came as close as any, and he finished 22 seconds behind, effectively in a different race.

Chris Froome’s victory on Green Mountain could scarcely have been more emphatic. pic: Bruno Bade/ASO

The closing 146.5km run from As Sifah to Matrah Corniche offers only two climbs, neither with the power to shape the race, and with a little more than a few humps in the closing 15km, Froome should have little difficulty in securing back-to-back titles if Team Sky are vigilant.

Compare and contrast Froome’s follow-up to a sensational 2013 campaign with Bradley Wiggins’ “been there, done that” shrug of 12 months ago. Motivation may be a problem for Wiggo, but it certainly isn’t for Froome, who gives every indication of making good on his pledge to dominate the Tour de France for years to come.

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