tour de france
Tinkoff riders during a training session in Coutances, France.Reuters

Britain's Mark Cavendish is on a roll. The 31-year-old, on Thursday, bagged a hat-trick of stage wins in the Tour de France 2016. His compatriot and defending champion Chris Froome however hasn't been able to bag even one stage win so far with six stages already completed in Le Tour.

Team Dimension Data's Cavendish now has the second-most stage wins in Tour de France with the figure hitting the 29 mark. Only legendary Belgium cyclist Eddy Merckx has more, with 34 stages in the Tour de France.

Stage 7 marks the embark of the peloton in the mountainous stages of the race, and Cavendish, who remained dominant on flat stages so far, may find himself in some sort of a discomfort as the race goes ahead. Friday sees the cyclists travel a 162.5 km stage from L'Isle-Jourdain in southern France to the artificial lake Lac de Payolle in the French Pyrenees.

The 1490 metre Col d'Aspin remains the first Category 1 climb of the tour this year, with the race entering Pyrenees. The cyclists need to climb 12km at an average gradient of 6.5%, and the quick descent to the finish in Lac de Payolle is expected to be a decisive and a technical one, especially for the yellow jersey contenders.

Along with Froome, Tinkoff's Alberto Contador remains one of the favourites to make a mark in the tour from this time around, as it enters the mountainous stages. "I've got through the stage ok, and that's the most important thing. Now I've got to rehydrate well because it's been the first really hot stage of this year's Tour," said Contador to Cycling News.

Where to watch live

Stage 7 is on July 8.

In India, the 21-day race will be LIVE on Ten 1 (7 p.m. IST), with the option of LIVE streaming on

Viewers in the UK can catch it on Eurosport 1 (1 p.m. - 4.45 p.m. BST) and ITV4 (2 p.m. - 4.30 p.m. BST). Live streaming: British Eurosport, ITV4.

Viewers in the US can catch it on NBC Sports Gold from 7 a.m. EST. Live streaming: NBC Sports.