Do you also have no opinion about a meal unless you have a profound knowledge of all the food available in a country?Always find these polls interesting . I have no idea how i would rate it, as i do not know the roads all over France and i'm wondering how many on this forum actually have a profound knowledge on that subject. Sure, I can see the stage lengths, where and when there will be mountains, ITT's or pavé sections and how those stages relate to each other on the calender and it would be fair to rate those "obvious" factors. But other than that, i wouldn't know how to rate the course in its entirety with my personal knowledge. There 's so much that can decide a race that is not in the presentation. I guess we could all rate it according to the info at hand and our personal knowledge, but i always wonder about people who do have enough knowledge of the actual roads to be able to either mope and moan about the course, or to otherwise praise it. This is no knock on people who actually do have a strong opinion one way or another, just that i'm not one of them since i don't consider myself sufficiently knowledgeable on the subject, it's also out of my comfort zone and personal interest (at least at that level). I'll rate it after the race
You (like the majority here) have seen plenty of racing on different routes over the years, and you have different expectations for different routes. While it may be crude, we all have a model of how a race unfolds and how riders respond to what a route has to offer. We may not have a perfect idea of all possible routes in France, but we clearly have access to what actual routes that have been raced in the past. I think the 2014 Tour route was far better than the 2012 route, because I'd expect better racing on the former route than the latter. I'm sure you too have a fuzzy order of what previous actual routes you could have expected better racing from. And while our knowledge of the route of next year is imperfect, I think it's possible for you too to compare it with previous routes.