The party was only scheduled for 2022. But the coronavirus has been there, and Brittany will therefore host the first stages of the Tour de France from 2021, whose director Christian Prudhomme unveiled the route on Sunday 1er November early evening on the show Stage 2.
The Grand Départ next year was indeed scheduled in Denmark. Only here: the global pandemic having forced the postponement of the Euro football in 2021, Copenhagen could not at the same time welcome the round ball and the little queen.
The return of a double individual time trial
The trip to Scandinavia will be done well, but in 2022, and the permutation with Brittany therefore proved to be the simplest solution for the organizers of the Great Loop. Except that suddenly, we had to review the entire first week of the race, the start on June 26 in Brest for the fourth time in the history of the event (a record, after 1952, 1974 and 2008) forcing almost the entire route to lean seriously to the West.
All the more so as these Armorican lands, the riders will explore them from top to bottom during the first four stages, including a final in Mûr-de-Bretagne, “Breton Alpe d’Huez”, just to spice up the first laps of the wheel. .
Then head for the Alps, but with a stopover in Mayenne for an individual time trial of around fifty kilometers between Changé and Laval. The exercise seemed to be falling into disuse, but the great upheaval caused at the last minute in the 2020 ranking to crown the Slovenian Tadej Pogacar has given the clock a facelift.
→ EXPLANATION. Tour de France: how is the route determined?
The Tour thus finds two real individual time trials, a tradition lost since the 2016 edition, the fight against time on the penultimate stage being renewed.
A July 14 high in the Pyrenees
The Alps this year stand out above all for their arrival in Tignes, also the site of the first day of rest. Then the peloton continues with the legendary Mont-Ventoux. But, surprise, the finish will not be played at the top, but at the foot of the northern slope at the end of a sensational descent. The mountain on this Tour 2021, after a foray into the medieval city of Carcassonne, is therefore above all the Pyrenees, abandoned in 2020 but which are coming back in force this time.
Four stages in total, with an arrival in Andorra, the flagship stage of this edition, on July 14, with a passage through the nasty Col du Portet (Hautes-Pyrénées) discovered in 2018, and a classic Pau-Luz-Ardiden. A series that should make the difference, unless like last year, a final rebound occurs in the last kilometers of the time trial before Paris in the vineyards of Bordeaux. In short, a Tour less mountainous than that of 2020, which could benefit roller-climbers and mark a return to a certain classicism. And to say, in hollow, the hope of also turning the page of the coronavirus.
The 21 stages of the Tour de France 2021
1st step: Brest – Landerneau, 187 km (June 26)
2nd step: Perros-Guirec – Mûr-de-Bretagne, 182 km (June 27)
3rd step: Lorient – Pontivy, 182 km (June 28)
4th step: Redon – Ferns, 152 km (June 29)
5th step: Changed – Laval, 27 km (individual time trial) (June 30)
6th step: Tours – Châteauroux, 144 km (July 1)
7th step: Vierzon – Le Creusot, 248 km (July 2)
8th step: Oyonnax – Le Grand-Bornand, 151 km (July 3)
9th step: Cluses – Tignes, 145 km (July 4)
Rest in Tignes (July 5)
10th step: Albertville – Valence, 186 km (July 6)
11th step: Sorgues – Malaucène, 199 km (July 7)
12th step: Saint-Paul-Trois-Châteaux – Nîmes, 161 km (July 8)
13th step: Nîmes – Carcassonne, 220 km (July 9)
14th step: Carcassonne – Quillan, 184 km (July 10)
15th step: Céret – Andorra la Vella, 192 km (July 11)
Rest in Andorra (July 12)
16th step: Pas de la Casa – Saint-Gaudens, 169 km (July 13)
17th step: Muret – Col du Portet, 178 km (July 14)
18th stage: Pau – Luz-Ardiden, 130 km (July 15)
19th step: Mourenx – Libourne, 203 km (July 16)
20th step: Libourne – Saint-Emilion, 31 km (individual time trial) (July 17)
21st step: Chatou – Paris Champs-Elysées, 112 km (July 18)