Tour de France 2021 route rumors

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With Rabassa, you at least have Gallina nearby.
If I were to choose options for a Andorra finish in TDF using Envalira, my first option would be Beixalis-Ordino-Els Cortals. Followed by Gallina-Rabassa. And then Beixalis-Arinsal.
Considering the distance from the depart, not so much options are left in Andorra after Envalira. So, Cabus is not the problem. Slightly steeper at least then Arcalis. But not incredible difficult that you have to wait for the last 2 kilometers before you get action. But at least use Baixalis before it. I mean even Formigal can bring a spectacular stage, but let say the chances on action on Envalira and Ordinno other than van Aert or Dennis tempo grinding........is not to big
 
With Rabassa, you at least have Gallina nearby.
If I were to choose options for a Andorra finish in TDF using Envalira, my first option would be Beixalis-Ordino-Els Cortals. Followed by Gallina-Rabassa. And then Beixalis-Arinsal.
Envalira from North-Beixalis-downhill finish in Andorra la Vella or Envalira from North-Beixalis-la Comella from South-downhill finish in Andorra la Vella would be nice.
 
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Envalira from North-Beixalis-downhill finish in Andorra la Vella or Envalira from North-Beixalis-la Comella from South-downhill finish in Andorra la Vella would be nice.

or indeed Envalira, Baixalis, and than Ordino (from relatively more interesting side) and than finish in Andorra la Vella
 
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or indeed Envalira, Baixalis, and than Ordino (from relatively more interesting side) and than finish in Andorra la Vella
what also is a pity is that the start location will mean they have to climb Envalira through Puymorons, which is considerably easier than form Ax-les-Thermes
 
They do have the Col de la Loze now, which can also be used as a pass. That's something.

And generally I feel like the ASO has actually tried to find new, or bring back old, really hard passes these last few years. The Grand Colombier has become somewhat of a regular Tour climb, they've introduced the Plauteau de Glieres and the Mont du Chat as their weak men's Mortirolos. It's just that they are lacking a real Mortirolo. If France had a climb like Punta Veleno or something similar, where all they would need would be some fresh tarmac and they would have themselves a new Tour icon, they probably wouldn't hesitate a second. But as it stands they have to build roads that are entirely new and who wants to make that sort of investment? Realistically there are bigger problems in the world than the Tour using a 15 km at 7% climb instead of a 20 km at 7.5% climb.
Even though there are no climbs like Mortriolo and Zoncolan in France, and they actually have startet to use new climbs like Colombier, Chat and Loze, the main problem is poor stage design and the lack of use of good combinations of climbs. There are severeral good options, especially in the Alps, which have never been used. Like:

Chamrousse via Luitel
Plan Bois - Croix de Fry, downhill finish to La Clusaz (or even MTF at Croix de Fry, it seems to be enough room there)
Madeleine north, descend, then St.Francois Longchamp finish. Or Chaussy - Longchamp.
And in the Pyrenees you of course have Pailheres - Plateau de Bonascre
Granon could also very well be used again. And if Galibier and Croix de Fry/Madeleine/Izoard is added first, I'm pretty sure at the field would blow completely apart at Granon.
 
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Besides, the stage designs for the high mountains (not looking to promissing, well we discussed the Andorra stage already, than the queen stage, with by far the most difficult climb as finish, and 3 mountaintop finishes in the last part of the tour and Tinges from the North), I'm also wondering how interesting stages besides the high mountains will be. Last years especially, it seemed that ASO at least developed more interest in the stage design for medium mountain and hilly stages, with even some nice designs. However, with the rumoured stages, it will be more difficult:

stage 1: flat or maximum slighly hilly with finish for strong sprinter punchers
stage 2: puncheurs
stage 3: flat
stage 4: flat
stage 5: time trail
stage 6: flat
stage 7: could be intersting .... is signal d'Uchon ASO proof?
stage 8: downhill finish, but how difficult will the stage be in total and how much will next stage block any action?
stage 9: Tignes from the North is dificult to make interesting
rest
stage 10: sprint or a breakaway stage
stage 11: downhill mont Ventoux (question here is, will there be other difficulties besides Ventoux, and does that actually matter as focus will be on Ventoux anyway)
stage 12: flat (sprint)
stage 13: flat (sprint) (at least some changes for echelons)
stage 14: big question? sprint seems unlikely. So, could be hilly or a Pescheux special with Pailhares.
stage 15: the big Andorra stage
rest
stage 16: Envalira + completely sprint or a kind of 2009 version
stage 17: queen stage
stage 18: last mountain stage
stage 19: flat (sprint)
stage 20: time trail
stage 21: flat (sprint)
 
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Even though there are no climbs like Mortriolo and Zoncolan in France, and they actually have startet to use new climbs like Colombier, Chat and Loze, the main problem is poor stage design and the lack of use of good combinations of climbs. There are severeral good options, especially in the Alps, which have never been used. Like:

Chamrousse via Luitel
Plan Bois - Croix de Fry, downhill finish to La Clusaz (or even MTF at Croix de Fry, it seems to be enough room there)
Madeleine north, descend St.Francois Longchamp finish. Or Chaussy - Longchamp.
And in the Pyrenees you of course have Pailheres - Plateau de Bonascre
Granon could also very well be used again. And if Galibier and Croix de Fry/Madeleine/Izoard is added first, I'm pretty sure at the field would blow completely apart at Granon.
I think they were testing Plan Bois in Dauphinee for next years tour as there will be a Grand Bornand finish. But I guess it's out now, because of what happened in the downhill.
 
I think they were testing Plan Bois in Dauphinee for next years tour as there will be a Grand Bornand finish. But I guess it's out now, because of what happened in the downhill.
Couldn't they just repave the descent and fix the worst points? Or is the whole descent so dangerous that it's too expensive to do something. Really bad if the abandon the idea of using it just because of the Roglic crash.
 
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Even if it's not Ax3 or any other high mountain stage, the question what sort of stage that will be remains. I would actually really like it if they made a medium mountain stage in the eastern pyrenees for once. It probably wouldn't be gc relevant with a mtf the next day, but that's a region we hardly ever see in the Tour cause usually whenever the Tour enters the pyrenees it doesn't bother with medium mountains and goes straight to the high passes further in the west.

I think the last rumored route I saw had Carcasonne as the finish of stage 13 which would make a pyrenees stage the next day pretty likely. But I really don't see 4 proper mountain stages there with Ventoux in the 2nd week already.
 
Even if it's not Ax3 or any other high mountain stage, the question what sort of stage that will be remains. I would actually really like it if they made a medium mountain stage in the eastern pyrenees for once. It probably wouldn't be gc relevant with a mtf the next day, but that's a region we hardly ever see in the Tour cause usually whenever the Tour enters the pyrenees it doesn't bother with medium mountains and goes straight to the high passes further in the west.

I think the last rumored route I saw had Carcasonne as the finish of stage 13 which would make a pyrenees stage the next day pretty likely. But I really don't see 4 proper mountain stages there with Ventoux in the 2nd week already.
I don't even know the Eastern Pyrenees man. My brain doesn't comprehend anything east Ax les Thermes. Jokes on me when the Tourmalet is probably 50km to the west as the crow flies
 
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Oct 7, 2019
88
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Even if it's not Ax3 or any other high mountain stage, the question what sort of stage that will be remains. I would actually really like it if they made a medium mountain stage in the eastern pyrenees for once. It probably wouldn't be gc relevant with a mtf the next day, but that's a region we hardly ever see in the Tour cause usually whenever the Tour enters the pyrenees it doesn't bother with medium mountains and goes straight to the high passes further in the west.

I think the last rumored route I saw had Carcasonne as the finish of stage 13 which would make a pyrenees stage the next day pretty likely. But I really don't see 4 proper mountain stages there with Ventoux in the 2nd week already.

that stage is rumored to finish in Quillan.

So, a sprint stage is unlikely, but like a mentioned in the overview of stages above, it is going to be hilly (I didn't investigate the exact possibilities, or it can go over the Pailhares, but then it's a kind of stage to Pau, with the last mountain quite far from the finish.
 
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But a rider like Tom Dumoulin in peak form would never loose 8 minutes combined to Bernal or Carapaz in the mountains in the two finishes at Luz Ardiden and Portet...
...and wouldn't that make him the best all round rider then...?

the GT winner does not have to be the best climber, nor should they be, frankly. that is a false impression created by the unbalanced designs of recent years.
 
...and wouldn't that make him the best all round rider then...?

the GT winner does not have to be the best climber, nor should they be, frankly. that is a false impression created by the unbalanced designs of recent years.
And exactly how many TT kms do you need to crown the best overall rider. If Bernal won a TDF with one minute on Dumoulin after loosing 5 mins in 60k of ITT and beating him with 6 mins in the mountain, would that make him an unworthy winner since there wasn't more TT kms?
 
And exactly how many TT kms do you need to crown the best overall rider. If Bernal won a TDF with one minute on Dumoulin after loosing 5 mins in 60k of ITT and beating him with 6 mins in the mountain, would that make him an unworthy winner since there wasn't more TT kms?
60 kms of flattish ITT is fine, but it should be close to the minimum imo (under 40 kms in the past two editions is, dare I say it, DISGRACEFUL :D). I am not asking for 100 kms in every edition, but every 2-3 Tours I reckon.
 
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Perhaps all old news to you eager rumour followers, but from a fresh Prudhomme interview

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The 2020 Tour was largely reserved for climbers. Will the 2021 one be more balanced?

It is the place of the Grand Départ which decides many things. With Nice in 2020, we had the opportunity to climb from the 2nd stage with the Col du Turini. With Brest, the Armorican massif is not the Alps. The first week will be more classic. But we found some very interesting bumps and bumps in the course, you’ll see.


What exactly can we expect during the first 10 days?

We’re going to play with the wind a lot and see if there are any edges. For two years, we have seen that this moves the peloton and puts on a show. There will be 4 or 5 stages where the wind can crack things. The wind is uncertainty. And uncertainty is suspense. The idea is also to densify the stages with courses of 150 km where we usually put 200.


Is it nice to see so many requests when Rennes, via its elected ecologists, had not wished to organize the Grand Départ?

We have already officially received an application from Rennes to be a stopover city! But it arrived when we had finalized the route and chosen other cities. We had to make choices and a balance between traditional towns and new towns. Landerneau and Pontivy will welcome us for the first time. And Brest will become the first city, outside Paris, to host a 4th Grand Départ. We will also be in Lorient and Mûr-de-Bretagne. The first two stages will be for the punchers, the next two more for the sprinters.
 

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