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Tour de France Route 2021

Grand Depart: Brittany… Brest and beyond…

Brittany featured image

Due to a date clash between the Tour de France and Olympics, the 2021 Grand Depart will be one week earlier (Le Loop dates 18th June – 12th July), and in Brittany rather than Denmark (which has been moved to 2022).

Brittany Highlights

Brest is the new Grand Depart city for 2021 and as far as we’re concerned, this is BRILLIANT news!

Brest is a port city with a beautiful historic centre and well used harbour. It’s about as far north and west as you can get, in the stunning region of Finesterre. It might not be as easy to get to as Paris, but it’s worth the train ride for the relaxed vibe and cycling history that you’ll find on arrival…

Brittany is a region of France that has it all; there are expansive beaches, rugged Cornwall-esque coastlines and quiet, beautiful roads and villages. It’s also far hillier than you might expect. So, let’s take a minute to understand what will be on offer to cyclists over the first four stages…

“4 etapes 100% Bretonnes” is how the Tour organisers described the start of the 2021 Tour de France. Four stage starts, four stage finishes and a chance to celebrate their rich cycling history – Brittany has a plan to show off everything that the region has to offer…

Coastal views: Finesterre is packed with them. We’re putting our money on a stage which visits the Pointe du Raz and Cap Sizun which have become known in Breton cycling circles over the last few years and are included in a few local stage races.

Wild moorland is on offer in the Argoat region – the Arree mountains and the Montagnes Noires don’t rise higher than a weedy 386m but it’ll feel anything but weedy when you’re cycling over them!

“Not just for sprinters” is how Christian Prudhomme, Tour chief, described the Brittany Grand Depart, which we’re taking as code that at least two of the four Breton stages will include 3,500 – 4,000m of climbing over 180 or so kilometres.

The famous Mur de Bretagne has been all but guaranteed a stage finish. Cue lots of chat about local man Bernard Hinault and his history with the Tour.

Morbihan is the posh bit of Brittany and was mentioned in the Grand Depart presentation as a stage host (most likely the town of Vannes). This means that for at least one night we’ll be rubbing shoulders with the sailing crowd and yacht-spotting as we ride. The area is also famous for it’s standing stones (Stonehenge eat your heart out).

St Malo may also get a look-in as we’ve been promised a stage concentrating on the northern coastline (the Cotes d’Armor) where the crepes are large and the cider flows freely. St Malo is a stunning fortified city with wide, sandy beaches and great views out to sea. What’s not to like?

The 2021 Grand Depart will focus on Breton culture and cycling pride. It’ll be a Grand Depart to remember. More details on each stage will be announced on 29th October along with the rest of the Tour route.

 

Don’t just watch it, Ride it!

Route Map

map

The 2021 map will be posted here in October when A.S.O. formally announce the full route.

Watch the Official Video

Image credit letour.fr

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Time for our lap of honour and the moment we’ve all been waiting for! Paris! But before we live out our maillot jaune fantasies on the sacred cobblestones of the Champs Élysées (one lap only for us – one is enough!), we’ll enjoy a relatively gentle roll in from the suburbs. The Arc de Triomphe will greet us as we cross the sacred cobbles of the Champs-Elysées.  We’ll have a few hours to savour the highs and lows of our achievements, and look forward to celebrating that evening.

Tour Practicalities:
Start: Tba
Finish: Paris hotel and Seine river cruise party included for all cyclists (tickets and hotel packages available for friends and family).

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