German racing cyclist Marcel Kittel is arguably the online sports betting favorite to win the Dubai Tour for the second time in a row. The Quick-Step Floors sprinter won the first stage on January 3st. The Teutonic rider completed the 181 km (112 mi) in 4h 06′ 33″, 3″ ahead of Dutch Dylan Groenewegen. As a result, Kittel is currently donning the general classification blue jersey as well as the points classification red jersey. Must get awfully hot biking through the desert with two jerseys on. Hopefully those garments have names on their backs, because in the desert no one remembers your name.
However, just as there are four stages left to race, there are also other offshore bookmaking favorites in addition to Kittel, as we’ll see below.
Mark Cavendish. The British sprinter won the 2016 Dubai Tour, and has finished first in the points classification in all three grand tours; the 2010 Vuelta a España, the 2011 Tour de France, and the 2013 Giro d’Italia.
John Degenkolb. The German rider for the UCI ProTeam Trek-Segafredo has won the 2015 Milan–San Remo and the 2015 Paris-Roubaix, the 2014 Gent–Wevelgem, ten stages and the points classification at the Vuelta a España, one stage of the Giro d’Italia, two stages of the 2011 Critérium du Dauphiné, the 2013 Vattenfall Cyclassics, and was the overall winner of the 2012 UCI Europe Tour.
Elia Viviani. The Italian was a gold medalist in the omnium at the 2016 Rio Olympics, and is among the on line sports betting favorites to win the Dubai Tour.
Sacha Modolo. Another Italian, Modolo won two stages of the Tour of Turkey, one stage of the Czech Cycling Tour, and finished 4th in the Brussels Cycling Classic in 2016. All of which may not equip him to be a offshore bookmaking darling, but he might come close to podiums a few times.
Juan José Lobato. The Andalusian finished 1st overall in the Vuelta a la Comunidad de Madrid, 3rd in the Circuit de la Sarthe, and 4th in the Gran Piemonte in 2016, but more to the point, he was 3rd in last year’s Dubai Tour.
Julian Alaphilippe. The French puncheur finished 2nd at La Flèche Wallonne for the second straight year in 2016, but the greatest victory of his career thus far came at the Tour of California, when he was the overall winner.
Sonny Colbrelli. The Italian rouleur placed first in the Gran Premio di Lugano, Coppa Sabatini, and Tre Valli Varesine, and 2nd in the Tour du Limousin, Giro di Toscana, Trofeo Laigueglia, and Volta Limburg Classic in 2016.
Silvan Dillier. The Swiss all-rounder was last year’s Dubai Tour 4th overall, and finished 8th in the 2016 Grand Prix of Aargau Canton.
Daniele Bennati. The Italian sprinter has won 11 stages in Grand Tours; two in the Tour de France, three in the Giro d’Italia, and six in the Vuelta a España. Given that the Dubai Tour is mostly one long flat sprinters’ stage, that makes Bennati another offshore bookmaking on line sports betting favorite.