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Sergio Henao can make a bold bid for Paris-Nice repeat

Team Sky chasing sixth win in seven years

Sergio Henao (yellow helmet) in action during the Tour de France
1 of 1

Eurosport 2, 2.20pm Sunday
Stage One starts 12.45pm

The road to the Tour de France begins with the first major stage race of the European season, Paris-Nice.

The last ten runnings of the Race to the Sun have produced ten different winners, but repeat wins are far from uncommon and defending champion Sergio Henao is worth backing at the prices to retain his crown.

Henao held off the late challenge of Alberto Contador to win by two seconds last year, and his descending prowess will again be an asset on the finishes to stages six and eight, which will go a long way towards deciding the race.

As was the case last year, Henao began his campaign by winning the Colombian national road title and he followed that up by finishing fourth in a strong field in the Colombia Oro y Paz. That should prove ideal preparation.

Team Sky have won the race in five of the last six years and Henao and Wout Poels begin as joint team leaders. Poels is favourite for the race and will look to make an impact on the climbs and in the time trial in the second half of the race.

Julian Alaphilippe is a warm order for the opening stage, which is a real puncheurs' test and he is one of several with an outside chance of GC victory.

Recommendation
S Henao to win Paris-Nice
1pt 11-1 bet365


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His descending prowess will again be an asset on the finishes to stages six and eight, which will go a long way towards deciding the race
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