2018 Tour de France is just behind the corner and here are our key stages, top contenders, riders to watch, thoughts, predictions, comments… | Subscribe to Cycling Weekly here: https://www.youtube.com/user/CyclingWeekly1?sub_confirmation=1
Dates: July 7-29, 2018
Grand Départ: Noirmoutier-en-l’Île, Vendée
Finish: Paris, France
TV coverage (UK): Eurosport, ITV4
The Tour de France 2018 route takes place almost entirely in France, with a very brief dip into Spain on stage sixteen.
The route will include an ascent of the Alpe d’Huez plus sections on the Paris-Roubaix cobbles which have not been visited since 2015 – and there will also be a short and sharp 65km stage in the Pyrénées.
The first three stages of the 2018 Tour de France will take place in Vendée. Two road opening stages will be followed by a 35 kilometre time trial.
The race will then head into Brittany, and the first uphill finish will take place on stage six on the Mûr de Bretagne on stage six.
Stage nine is expected to be a pivotal day, with a 154km route including 21.7km of cobbles, with a finish in Roubaix. Next there will be three days in the mountains, including a stage featuring Alpe d’Huez,
Moving to the Pyrénées the race will feature several more summit finishes, as well as a very short stage 17, at 65km finishing atop the Col-de-Portet.
The queen stage will be stage 19 – a 200km route taking in the Col d’Aspin, Col du Tourmalet, and Col d’Aubisque.
The penultimate day will feature a time trial of 31km between Saint-Pée-sur-Nivelle and Espelette, before the finale parade to the Champs-Élysées.
Teams will start with eight-man squads – leading to a smaller peloton of 176 as opposed to the 198 of 2017 – this is thanks to a UCI decision made in June.
Read more at http://www.cyclingweekly.com/news/racing/tour-de-france#2HSTzoEJ9rPRZjol.99
Cycling Weekly: http://www.cyclingweekly.co.uk/