10 sleeps until Christmas Paris.
With the 2019 Tour de France route announcement due next Thursday, we’re still quite in the dark as to the exact details of the route. This makes for a very exciting last week of waiting so after breezing through a quick summary of what we think we know, why not let our imaginations go wild with what we don’t know…
What we know…
- We’ll definitely be drinking champagne in Epernay and Reims during the first week.
- We’ll climb the famous Planche des Belles Filles but probably with an extra bit of bonus tarmac to make the climb longer than ever before (calling all strava fans to a new KOM challenge!)
- If you draw a line diagonally through France from the NE to the SW, the entire Tour will take place to the east and south of this line.
- ASO, the tour organisers will try to break team Sky by packing in some high altitude climbs (Galibier, Izouard, Iseran?) in the Alps and by sneaking in some short, sharp, team-busting mountain stages
What we don’t know…
- After the 28km team time trial on stage 2, we’re not sure if there’ll be one or two more individual time trials. For Le Loop, a time trial is a treat of a half day of cycling so our fingers are crossed for something fun somewhere south in the second or third week of the tour.
- We still don’t really have a feel for the Pyrenean highlights. There’s much speculation about summit finishes and a super-short stage or time trial, but no clear stage order has come to our attention yet.
- How many ski towns will we visit in the Alps?
- Cobbles, gravel, newly paved tracks…? Will 2019 include any or all of these? Or will it just be km after km of perfect Tour Tarmac?
If you’re as excited as we are, you can watch the route release live next Thursday. Or check our blog and facebook page and look out for a Le Loop email and we’ll bring you photos from Paris as well as our 2019 Loops which will be announced a few days later.
Don’t just watch it. Ride it!