In 2022, cycling enthusiasts will have the opportunity to follow two Tours de France. The women’s edition of the Grande Boucle is indeed making a comeback, after more than twelve years of absence. Its route as well as that of the men’s edition were unveiled Thursday, October 14 by Amaury Sport Organization (ASO), the organizing company.
The 2022 Tour de France Women will kick off in Paris on July 24 in front of the Eiffel Tower, arriving seven days later at the top of the Belles-Filles board in the Vosges mountains. The course will contain eight stages for a distance exceeding 1,000 kilometers. Four stages will take place in the plain, two others will have a hilly profile and two will take place in the mountains.
High point at the Grand Ballon
Symbolically, the competitors will climb the Ballon d’Alsace, the first pass climbed by the Tour de France in 1905, and will compete for the last yellow jersey at the top of the Belles-Filles super board, which will also be a finish of the Grande Boucle. male next year.
If the highest point of the event is set at the Grand Ballon (1336 m above sea level), in the 7e and penultimate stage leading to the Alsatian station of Markstein, the longest stage will reach 175 kilometers between Bar-le-Duc and Saint-Dié-des-Vosges (5e stage).
Curiosity of this first edition, the 4e step will take the “White paths”, French version of the Tuscan Strade Bianche, that is to say chalky paths through the vineyards of the Champagne hillsides for nearly 13 kilometers as you approach Bar-sur-Aube.
Twenty-two teams of six riders will be entered in the Tour de France Women and the race will benefit from a live broadcast of two and a half hours per day on France Télévisions. The Women’s Tour de France has existed in the past in different forms. Organized in parallel with the Men’s Tour from 1984 to 1989, it then took place with other organizers under other names before disappearing at the end of the 2000s for lack of funding.
The new event will be endowed with 250,000 euros in prizes, including 50,000 euros for the winner. An amount greater than the one-week races for men (the total amount of the Paris-Nice prizes reaches for example 144,300 euros, including 16,000 euros for the winner), but much lower than that of the men’s Tour de France, including the winner will receive ten times more (500,000 euros), his runner-up 200,000 euros and the third 100,000 euros.
The return of the Col du Granon
The next men’s tour de France, for its part, will start in Denmark on 1er July. It will stop at Alpe-d’Huez on July 14, 2022, National Day, before ending on July 24 on the Champs-Elysées.
The route divides its arrivals at the top into three massifs: one in the Vosges at the top of the Belles-Filles board, two in the Alps, the Col du Granon and Alpe-d’Huez, and two in the Pyrenees, in Peyragudes and Hautacam.
Between the start from Copenhagen, the most northerly in the history of the event created in 1903, and the finish judged as usual on the Champs-Elysées in Paris, the riders will pass through four countries (Denmark, France, Belgium, Switzerland) and will leave a day earlier than usual, on a Friday, in order to allow the transfer to the north of France after the first three Danish days. They will then be entitled to a sequence on the cobbles of Paris-Roubaix.
The race, as in 2021, will cross the Alps before the Pyrenees and will be definitively determined on the occasion of a 40-kilometer time trial scheduled in the medieval site of Rocamadour, an ancestral place of pilgrimage, on the eve of the ‘arrived in Paris.
New to the route, the Pyrenean pass of Spandelles will precede the last ascent, the rise of Hautacam, three days from the end of Paris.
In the Alps, the Col du Granon, at an altitude of 2,413 meters above the Serre-Chevalier resort, makes a symbolic comeback: it was only climbed in the race on July 20, 1986 for the last appearance in Bernard Hinault’s yellow jersey, the last French winner of the event (1985).
According to the details of the organizers, the alternation is between six stages of plain, seven hilly and six mountain, as well as two individual time trials with a total distance of 53 kilometers (against 58 km in 2021 and 36, 2 km in 2020).