Stage 17 didn’t so much follow a script, as follow several scrips, each one torn up and cast to the winds to be replaced by a new act. Attack followed attack, and break followed break, until the closing stages when everyone decided to settle in for a sprint finish.
Anything could still happen, of course. Yates could have a bad day, or crash, or get sucked in and swallowed up by the sheer force of one of Eurosport commentator Carlton Kirby’s swirling psychedelic analogies. But, more likely, he could get all the way to Rome and win the thing.