Étoile de Bessèges 2021 (February 3-7)

With not much else going on in the way of racing, this deserves its own thread this year.


Overall map

Stage 1 (Bellegarde - Bellegarde, 144 km)

Final climb:

Stage 2 (Saint-Geniès-de-Malgoires - La Calmette, 154 km)

Stage 3 (Bessèges - Bessèges, 155 km)


(I don't have a profile for Côte de Tharaux or the uncategorised climb after it)

Stage 4 (Rousson - Saint-Siffret, 152 km)

Stage 5 (ITT Alès - Alès, 10.7 km)

Final climb:
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Really looking forward to this race with a field this star-studded.

* Ganna
**** Bettiol, Wellens, Kwiatkowski
*** B. Thomas, G. Thomas, Pedersen
** Hagen, Kämna, Grossschartner
* Latour, Hayter, Mollema, Van Avermaet, Laporte, Coquard
Don't really understand why so many top climbers are riding this one and not Provence.
Because every other race tailormade for climbers in february is postponed or cancelled. The french races and uae tour will probably be some of the very few that will be organised this month. And even climbers need a bit of competition. The teams stacked with climbers can't send them all to provence.
Reactions: Sandisfan
If I'm not mistaken last year they did Cote de la Tour twice, once with around 10 km to go and then at the finish, which led to some riders being almost lapped (as seen in the video).

This year there are almost 40 km between the two passages over the Cote, so the final should be easier to control. Punchers are favored but strong sprinters definitely have a chance if in good shape.