Loop 10: Very Best of the South West: short, medium or long (3 or 4 days)
The desire to make the Tour de France more exciting to watch on TV is great news for cycling amateurs: stages are sometimes shorter to encourage more aggressive riding by the pros (making them much more do-able for us mortals) and sometimes completely formidable in the most challenging sense (see stage 19, included in the ‘long’ version below). Whether you’re in by 4pm or out on the road until daylight fades, these will be very, very special days. You have three options…
Short: Cycle stages 16-18 but with a coach transfer at the beginning of stage 16 to bypass the first, flat 120km. This leaves you all day to concentrate on ‘just’ 100km of beautiful mountains. Stage 17 is a short 65km mountain stage, leaving the flat, distance challenge (just over 100 miles) of stage 18 to earn your Tour stripes.
Medium: Cycle stages 16-18 exactly as the pros will. The first stage is the toughest but don’t underestimate how it feels getting up and doing it again tomorrow – it’s all part of the challenge. The flat(tish) stage 18 finishes your Tour trilogy with vinyards and sunshine for company and views up to the mountains you just conquered.
Long: Cycle stages 16-18 as above and then stay with us for a date with stage 19, probably the toughest stage of the 2018 Tour. This makes for a great rhythm of stages (long, short, flat, bonkers) that will, one week later, leave you in awe of the time the pros take to do the same. (NB. The stage 19 ‘long’ extension costs £150 and will be available to buy once you’ve signed up for Loop 10).
Note: It will be possible to buy a Paris extension for this Loop if you’d like to carry on for the time trial, transfer north and party in Paris. Once you’ve bought your place, this extension will be available in the Rider Zone shop.
- Arrive: Mon 16th July.
- Stage 16:Tues 17th July. Carcassonne – Luchon. 218km.
- Stage 17: Weds 18th July. Luchon – St Lary. 65km.
- Stage 18: Thurs 19th July. Trie sur Baise – Pau. 172km.
- (Long Option: Stage 19: Fri 20th July. Lourdes – Laruns. 200km).
- Depart: Either Fri 20th July (Short & Medium) or Sat 21st July (Long)
Included in all Loops
- Accommodation (Mostly twin share. Single supplements are available to buy in January)
- Food (3 meals and the best feedstops you’ve ever seen)
- Fully signed route, the stuff of legend
- Mechanical, medical and moral support
- Luggage Transfers
- Coach transfers to the next stage start where applicable
Not included in all Loops
- Travel to and from France (but we’ll give you advice on the best travel routes)
- Bike Transport (£30 each way if you want us to drive your bike there and back)
- Evening massage (£10 per massage)
- Beer/wine/dinner drinks!