Sean Kelly believes that the confidence Sam Bennett will have gained from his first stage win at the Tour de France on Tuesday means he will be capable of repeating the feat on today's 11th stage.

"It's been a long time coming but at last he gets his stage victory. Well deserved," Kelly, a four-time green jersey winner, told RTÉ Sport's Darren Frehill.

"There were a lot of expectations of him, changing team coming into this year, and a team that is a specialist lead-out for a sprinter like Sam (Deceuninck-Quick Step).

"It’s not a surprise that we see him winning. It’s an enormous achievement and it takes so much pressure off him going forward in this Tour de France."

Today's 167.5km trip from Châtelaillon-Plage to Poitiers is another one set up for sprinters, as Kelly knows well, having won it himself 42 years ago.

"The stage today is the stage that I won my first Tour de France stage in," he said. "It’s a long time ago but I have a lot of clear memories.

"It’s going to be an interesting day because now Sam has got his first victory and when you get that feeling, you feel like you can win many more.

"It’s a big possibility that he could get his second stage victory within 24 hours.

"When you get the taste of victory as an athlete and a professional cyclist you just want to get more."

Sean Kelly (l) pictured with former Sean Kelly Racing Team member Sam Bennett in 2011

Bennett is locked in a battle with Peter Sagan for the sprinters' points title.

The Slovak has won it an incredible seven times but Kelly thinks his fellow Carrick-on-Suir native will be transformed by becoming just the second Irishman - after Shay Elliott - to win a stage at all three Grand Tours. 

"The green jersey is a target, to win that outright, so he has to go for this stage today.

"It’s very possible. He has proved to himself he can win and when you get that confidence it’s amazing the things you can do."