Tour de France 2016 Grand Départ

Tour de France 2016 Grand Départ

http://www.letour.fr/le-tour/2015/us/pre-race/news/ahc/grand-depart-of-the-2016-tour-de-france-the-manche-a-first.html

Grand Départ of the 2016 Tour de France: the Manche, a first!

The details for the Grand Départ of the 2016 Tour de France were announced at mid-day by Tour de France Director, Christian Prudhomme, and Jean-François Le Grand, President of the Manche General Council in the heart of the Mont-Saint-Michel Abbey. The peloton will set off on Saturday July 2, 2016 from the foot of the "Marvel of the Western World" for three days of racing in the department that will host start of the Tour de France for the first time.

In the aftermath of the Grand Départ in Corsica, Yorkshire and Utrecht in Holland in 2015, a spectacular visual feast will be part of the program for the beginning of the 2016 Tour, which will set off from the foot of the Mont-Saint-Michel. The riders will first follow the bay then, after crossing the Cotentin Peninsula, will head to Utah Beach, one of the 6 June, 1944 landing beaches, situated at Sainte-Marie-du-Mont. This mainly coastal route could expose the riders to wind gusts, but the totally flat profile will most certainly be to the advantage of the teams of the top sprinters.

The 2016 Tour will waste little time in posing a challenge to the contenders. As early as day two of the race, Sunday July 3, 2016, the leaders will have to make themselves and their intentions known and head into battle. After leaving Saint-Lô, the race will make its way towards Coutances then back to the coast with the Channel Islands in the background. But in approaching La Hague, the riders will have to prepare for a more difficult time. The crossing from Cherbourg to Octeville will bring the peloton, or what is left of it, towards the tough La Glacerie climb. At the top there will be seconds to take after a three kilometer ascent with a 14% grade section.

After crisscrossing the department and skirting its coastline, the Tour de France peloton will say goodbye to the Manche on Monday July 4, 2016. Stage three will start from the west coast port and seaside resort of Granville, for a destination that will remain unknown until October 20, 2015, the date of the 2016 Tour de France presentation.

Christian Prudhomme, Tour de France Director: “The Manche is a very beautiful department with breath taking scenery. It offers varied terrain that will favor the sprinters at Utah Beach, and allow the punchers their chance to standout in the hills above Cherbourg-Octeville. Let us not forget the Mont-Saint-Michel that will majestically enhance the very first pedal strokes of the riders of the peloton, three years after it was the backdrop for the 100th Tour de France.”
Jean-François Le Grand, President of the Manche General Council: “It was written that the history of cycling, the Tour de France and the Manche would one day converge. We are proud to offer cycling a sumptuous setting, to promise the Tour de France a warm and passionate welcome and to offer the Manche all the glory it deserves. The coming together of the three during the 2016 start will be magic.”

The Manche stages of the 2016 Tour:
• Saturday July 2: Mont-Saint-Michel - Utah Beach Sainte-Marie-du-Mont, 188 km
• Sunday July 3: Saint Lô – Cherbourg-Octeville, 182 km
• Monday July 4: Granville > …
Official poster



Stage 1 map:


Stage 2 map:


Stage 2 final:
 
Is 3 a confirmed road stage? Smells a bit like a TT(T) but I guess three days in such a small department would be unlikely. You think they'd take a pretty direct route down the the Alps but that would defy the trend of a phony first weekend. Best guess at this stage is a fairly central route and some old favourite sprint stations and maybe an uphill finish somewhere Central... I see it quite like 2012 so ideally on the weekend two of a TT, Jura, Colombier/Biche.
 
Oct 9, 2014
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Does anyone else feel this signals an anti-clockwise route that has a big finish in the Vosges?
 
guncha said:
I don't want to be sarcastic... but maybe TDF 2016 will be even more innovative and will contain zero time trials.
and I don't want to be sarcastic but maybe for the 2020 ToF start, CNF will innovate by starting a thread 5 years in advance. :rolleyes:
 
Oct 9, 2014
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Echoes said:
and I don't want to be sarcastic but maybe for the 2020 ToF start, CNF will innovate by starting a thread 5 years in advance. :rolleyes:
If they announced a new start for the P-R or Flanders for 2016 I assure you it would make news in this forum. Routes and Licences are the only news anyone can get from now until the TDU or San Luis.
 
nhowson said:
If they announced a new start for the P-R or Flanders for 2016 I assure you it would make news in this forum. Routes and Licences are the only news anyone can get from now until the TDU or San Luis.
Pretty much year, too little off-season polls going on

Also, plenty of clinic news actually
 
Oct 9, 2014
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Red Rick said:
Pretty much year, too little off-season polls going on

Also, plenty of clinic news actually
This place can be on a hair trigger with the OT stuff, didn't want to bring that up.
 
With the route likely being first Alps then Pyrenees, I would expect/hope something like this for the Andorra stage:

* Last transition stage ending in Perpignan
* Probably stage start in Prades, then over Col de Jau and Port de Pailhères to Ax-les-Thermes where it turns towards Andorra, over Port d'Envalira and end in one of Andorra's mountaintop finishes.

Also I noticed that next year is 100th anniversary of the birth of Francois Mitterrand so I tried to think how his hometown Jarnac (located around the area where final TT in 2007 was held) could be added to the route. This option was in my mind:

Thursday: final mountain stage
Friday: flat stage, presumably to Bordeaux or somewhere near it
Saturday: TT ending in Jarnac
Sunday: Parade to Paris
 
Maybe there should be a general tour de France 2016 route thread because I think that there are quite a few things we can already speculate about. Especially the 3 days in Andorra are quite interesting.
 
Well, we'll have had Els Cortals (in the 2015 Vuelta) so that's the best Andorra MTF option out the way, perhaps we can get Vallnord Sector Arinsal if we're lucky. Most likely Arcalis. We haven't had Pal in the TdF since 1993 I don't think (though the Vuelta's had it a few times since, most recently 2010). I'd also really like the double-stepped climb to Llac d'Engolasters, but that's less likely to pay up than the ski stations. The paving of Beixalis opens up a lot more options though. Perhaps an ideal option would be Envalira-Beixalis-(La Comella?)-Gallina-La Rabassa MTF, but Beixalis can be used to lead into Arinsal or Pal too. For Arcalis, the Coll d'Ordino would still be the obvious pick.

In a perfect world:


Maybe they can go all retro on us with the following stage in the opposite direction, Andorra - Port del Cantò - Port de la Bonaigua - Coll de Portillón - Col de Peyresourde - Col d'Azet - Pla d'Adet, like the 1993 Tour where they went super mutant and Zenon Jaskuła and Tony Rominger (with Indurain just a couple of seconds behind) broke the Pla d'Adet record by 4 minutes. Another option would be the Loudenvielle finish after Peyresourde, or Peyragudes, or Saint-Lary-Soulan (I'd prefer the finish in the town). Superbagnères would be great, as first day after the rest (presumably final Tuesday of the race, last mountain stage on the Weds prob starting in Pau, flat one going north on Thurs, some hilly stage somewhere like Brive-la-Gaillarde (Tulle '96 with some earlier climbs please!!!) or even Aurillac then on the last Saturday the final ITT. If they're somewhere like that then Lac de Vassivière would be perfect, rolling back the years as well. With a couple of longer transfers what might be cooler is to have the last Pyrenees stage on the Weds, a long flat stage northward from somewhere like Mont-de-Marsan on the Thurs, the ITT on the Friday something like Sarlat-la-Canéda - Brive (55-60km) and then a stage across the Massif with Col de Chansert and Col de Béal as the final mountain stage on the Saturday - a final MTF in the Massif Central on the route back to Paris? Now there's a revolutionary different idea!!!
 

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