Tour de France 2021 route rumors

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Sep 22, 2020
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I've come up with my prediction for the final route here: https://www.la-flamme-rouge.eu/maps/tours/view/16306

It needs some refining as it is too long (over 3600km) and some stages are less practical than I would like. Examples are like stage 9 where I didn't need to put in the ascent to Arc 1800 so that could be removed. I also made some assumptions:

-Stage 8 to start in oyonnax which I now question, and that they won't follow the same finish climb sequence as in 2018.
-We finish and rest in Tignes.
-Granon is used over the Alpe which I would deem unlikely
-We go over col de menee on stage 11 otherwise we basically follow 2020 stage 5's route.
-We go over the Pic de Nore to Carcassonne just like 2018.
-We don't visit Andorra
-We get one of those weird stages with mountain passes in the middle to Pau.
-Given I only had 1 descent finish mountain stage up until the pyrenees I chose iraty over a MTF at Luz Ardiden, favouring a finish in Lourdes of the Col des Spandelles.
-My final TT is kind of random, I would change it now so that we start going towards Castillon-la-Bataille then head towards St Emilion.
 
I've come up with my prediction for the final route here: https://www.la-flamme-rouge.eu/maps/tours/view/16306

It needs some refining as it is too long (over 3600km) and some stages are less practical than I would like. Examples are like stage 9 where I didn't need to put in the ascent to Arc 1800 so that could be removed. I also made some assumptions:

-Stage 8 to start in oyonnax which I now question, and that they won't follow the same finish climb sequence as in 2018.
-We finish and rest in Tignes.
-Granon is used over the Alpe which I would deem unlikely
-We go over col de menee on stage 11 otherwise we basically follow 2020 stage 5's route.
-We go over the Pic de Nore to Carcassonne just like 2018.
-We don't visit Andorra
-We get one of those weird stages with mountain passes in the middle to Pau.
-Given I only had 1 descent finish mountain stage up until the pyrenees I chose iraty over a MTF at Luz Ardiden, favouring a finish in Lourdes of the Col des Spandelles.
-My final TT is kind of random, I would change it now so that we start going towards Castillon-la-Bataille then head towards St Emilion.
Some good suggestions/predictions. LGB can be good. So long as the stage after it is not too hard to discourage attacks.

Granon or Alpe after first rest day is good.

PDB before second rest day is also good.

Such a route seems a little less back ended to normal; likely to make for better racing.

Some ITT in the first week would be a big positive. As is a decent length ITT on the penultimate stage (hopefully more traditionally flat this time).

You are predicting FOUR stages in the Pyrenees?
 
Sep 22, 2020
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Some good suggestions/predictions. LGB can be good. So long as the stage after it is not too hard to discourage attacks.

Granon or Alpe after first rest day is good.

PDB before second rest day is also good.

Such a route seems a little less back ended to normal; likely to make for better racing.

Some ITT in the first week would be a big positive. As is a decent length ITT on the penultimate stage (hopefully more traditionally flat this time).

You are predicting FOUR stages in the Pyrenees?
This is where I have no idea what the organisers are going to do! I also recently heard about the rumour of the Col de Portet so I don't know how that might fit in. Plateau de Beille, Col de Portet and Iraty seems like a bit much to me. Also I keep hearing about Mt Ventoux but there are some problems with that:
  • They wouldn't have it straight after stage 10 if they went up the Alpe or a climb like the Granon, so it would have to come on stage 12 at earliest (so probably from Nice)
  • That would mean going into the Massif Central would be difficult enough, not to mention we have a stage start and finish in Carcassone rumoured.
i suppose it would be possible that the race goes like this?

Stage 13 - We leave Mt Ventoux region (avignon?) I think it was confirmed no Montpellier so we would probably have a long day to somewhere like Beziers. That leaves stages 14-15 where we could reach the Massif Central. Maybe have the rest day at Carcassonne like in 2018 and then only introduce the Pyrenees on the final week. I personally think that Ventoux has sadly fallen out of favour, so I doubt this.

Assuming the Portet stage replaces the Pau one, maybe we have a flat stage on stage 16 to take us to the start town of that stage, then on stage 18 we have a descent finish if i had to guess (but where? Lourdes seems possible but then its one hell of a transfer over to Bayonne region, so instead we can consider a flat stage from somewhere like Tarbes???!!!)

In conclusion I have no idea! I just hope we get a good amount of time trial kilometres which we haven't really had since 2014.
 
I've come up with my prediction for the final route here: https://www.la-flamme-rouge.eu/maps/tours/view/16306

It needs some refining as it is too long (over 3600km) and some stages are less practical than I would like. Examples are like stage 9 where I didn't need to put in the ascent to Arc 1800 so that could be removed. I also made some assumptions:

-Stage 8 to start in oyonnax which I now question, and that they won't follow the same finish climb sequence as in 2018.
-We finish and rest in Tignes.
-Granon is used over the Alpe which I would deem unlikely
-We go over col de menee on stage 11 otherwise we basically follow 2020 stage 5's route.
-We go over the Pic de Nore to Carcassonne just like 2018.
-We don't visit Andorra
-We get one of those weird stages with mountain passes in the middle to Pau.
-Given I only had 1 descent finish mountain stage up until the pyrenees I chose iraty over a MTF at Luz Ardiden, favouring a finish in Lourdes of the Col des Spandelles.
-My final TT is kind of random, I would change it now so that we start going towards Castillon-la-Bataille then head towards St Emilion.
Too much climbing on that route and not enough TT to even make it semi balanced.

The route would be a good one, if the two flat ITTs were expanded to 55 km a piece
 
Sep 22, 2020
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Ok so after new information has come out I am going to change my prediction for the final route:

Stages 1 - 9: These stay the same, except for some things. On stage 8 perhaps remove one or too kind of random cols. On the Stage to Tignes Arc 1800 and Montee de Bisanne can be removed.
10.) I will keep this the same though Alpe d'Huez seems more probable. This I expect would be a queen stage.
11.) La Mure - ??? (we don't really know, but based on my route it would be something hilly, in the region between Vercors and Mont Ventoux, perhaps Gap.
12.) ??? - Nimes (likely a flat stage. I have Vaison la Romaine down but it is possible if we were starting from somewhere closer to Gap region. Alternatively a start like Montelimar in the Rhone Valley.
13.) Nimes - Carcassone (probably flat, it is too far to go up the Pic de Nore.)
14.) Carcassone - Ax 3 Domaines (I replace Plateau de Beille here because the Col de Portet looks increasing likely.)
15.) Foix - Toulouse (flat day taking us to Toulouse to prepare for start in Muret. Some may protest having a flat day at the end of the weekend however it was done in 2014 and based on my route another mountain day would be unrealistic.)
rest in toulouse
16.) Muret - Col de Portet (first of three pyreneen tests in the final week, concentrated onto the Col de Portet at Saint Lary. We could feasibly go over a number of climbs, the two most likely routes from Muret being over the Peyresourde and Val Louron Azet or via the Col d'Aspin or Hourquette d'Ancizan.)
17.) Bagneres de Bigorre - Lourdes (Tourmalet, Luz Ardiden lower slopes to Trabaout, Soulor, Spandelles. A stage which probably won't have all the anticipated action on due to stage 18 but you never know. Its unexplored territory for most the final climb so we could see surprises.)
18.) Tarbes - Chalets d'Iraty ?? Larrau (Most people mention Iraty but logistics complicate things. We know it would be likely followed by climbs like the Aubisque and Soudet or perhaps some of the other basque climbs.)
19.) Oloron Sainte Marie - Libourne (Bordeaux seems more practical but like with Annecy environmental concerns could dampen the chance for a stage here.)
20.) Libourne - St Emilion (A TT of maybe 40 - 50 km.)

I am currently in the process of updating that LFR route, with lots of this in mind.
 
Sep 22, 2020
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Feasible? Possible? I have no clue what could happen on a stage inbetween La Mure and Nimes Starts and finishes. I came up with this. But I can't really think of what else to do to have a meaningul medium mountain / mountain stage before we leave the alps towards the Pyrenees.
 
Sep 22, 2020
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Important update

It looks like the Giant of Provence is returning on stage 11, which kinda puts a screw in my idea about what stage 10 could look like. If this is the case Alpe d'Huez and Granon may well have to wait until next year because I do not see a way of getting from the south Jura area to Alpe d'Huez for an 8th (it might be possible to go over the Granon and the Alpe, then take the route like 2019 to Tignes.)
 
La Depeche has other ideas, and whilst the first makes sense, the second doesn't fit in at all
*14 July - stage 17 - Saint-Gaudens - Col du Portet via Port de Balès, Col de Peyresourde and Col de Val Louron-Azet. Something like 110 km, depending on how much flat there is at the start (I'm assuming the worst)
*15 July - stage 18 - Pau - Luz Ardiden. No indications about the route, though there is one very well known mountain that is included in 99% of stages to Luz Ardiden in the RDT.

Overall, it just seems a bit... uninspiring, if this is the case.
 
La Depeche has other ideas, and whilst the first makes sense, the second doesn't fit in at all
*14 July - stage 17 - Saint-Gaudens - Col du Portet via Port de Balès, Col de Peyresourde and Col de Val Louron-Azet. Something like 110 km, depending on how much flat there is at the start (I'm assuming the worst)
*15 July - stage 18 - Pau - Luz Ardiden. No indications about the route, though there is one very well known mountain that is included in 99% of stages to Luz Ardiden in the RDT.

Overall, it just seems a bit... uninspiring, if this is the case.
Well it's a 3rd week in the Pyrenees. The Pyrenees IMO have so much less potential and especially considering how the Tour uses them. Tourmalet/Luz Ardiden and a Col de Portet finish are both straightforward but at least they're really good MTFs.

And now, because I can't possibly end a Tour route rumor on a high note, I fully expect the 3rd Pyrenean stage to be trash
 
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La Depeche has other ideas, and whilst the first makes sense, the second doesn't fit in at all
*14 July - stage 17 - Saint-Gaudens - Col du Portet via Port de Balès, Col de Peyresourde and Col de Val Louron-Azet. Something like 110 km, depending on how much flat there is at the start (I'm assuming the worst)
*15 July - stage 18 - Pau - Luz Ardiden. No indications about the route, though there is one very well known mountain that is included in 99% of stages to Luz Ardiden in the RDT.

Overall, it just seems a bit... uninspiring, if this is the case.
It's uninspiring but Balès, Peyresourde, Louron-Azet, Portet is a decent chain. If they succumb to the dreaded super-short stages, at least put together hard 80-90km in the mountains. A kingdom for an extra loop across the Menté though, obviously. I wouldn't mind if they finished at Pla d'Adet, really. Shorter final climb to force a bit more action on the Val Louron-Azet (and the descent - not looking at anyone JAN ULLRICH).

We haven't seen Luz-Ardiden in 10 years, so honestly, I'm fine with it making a comeback. Tourmalet (East Side)-Ardiden is a good final 50km or so. At least it's the better side of the Tourmalet. Curious to see what they'll end up doing in the Alps - but not curious in a good way.
 
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It's uninspiring but Balès, Peyresourde, Louron-Azet, Portet is a decent chain. If they succumb to the dreaded super-short stages, at least put together hard 80-90km in the mountains. A kingdom for an extra loop across the Menté though, obviously. I wouldn't mind if they finished at Pla d'Adet, really. Shorter final climb to force a bit more action on the Val Louron-Azet (and the descent - not looking at anyone JAN ULLRICH).

We haven't seen Luz-Ardiden in 10 years, so honestly, I'm fine with it making a comeback. Tourmalet (East Side)-Ardiden is a good final 50km or so. At least it's the better side of the Tourmalet. Curious to see what they'll end up doing in the Alps - but not curious in a good way.
Yeah at the very least they're good combos if unimaginative.

That said, once again doing the 'omg short mountain stage' with a massive MTF rendering the entire point moot.
 
Oct 7, 2019
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well, of course pyrenees doesn't offer the same possibilities as the Alpes. But, they offer more possibilities than that the tour is making use of. They only climb around Bagnères-de-Luchon ever year.
 
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well, of course pyrenees doesn't over the same possibilities as the Alpes. But, they offer more possibilities than that the tour is making use of. They only climb around Bagnères-de-Luchon ever year.
This is kinda what I'm trying to get at - yeah, sure, I don't mind some of the chains. But they're getting really boring, everyone knows what to expect, and plus the Pyrenees do offer much more than just those climbs. They were looking at Bagargui etc., I wouldn't at all mind them going into that area rather than sticking to climbs we all know inside out and back to front.
Also what is annoying is that ASO seems to think that two hard-core MTF finishes will do the job of splitting the favourites ahead of the time trial because they are just hard and so people will attack and race hard. Ehm, not too sure on that..
 
Pau - Pic du Midi 100km unipuerto will be the outcome and we all know it.
Could have a MUCH better stage up Midi

Lannemazan to Pic Du Midi. Same start as the 2001 and 2005 Pla D'Adet stages

Over the first 4 climbs from those stages, but instead of going to the Val Luron-Azet we go over the Aspin and then up Midi

Portet D'Aspet-Mente-Portillion-Pereysourde-Aspin-Pic Du Midi

Alternatively, we can skip Portet de Aspet and Portillion

Mente-Bales-Pereysourde-Aspin-Midi
 
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Jul 2, 2019
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This is kinda what I'm trying to get at - yeah, sure, I don't mind some of the chains. But they're getting really boring, everyone knows what to expect, and plus the Pyrenees do offer much more than just those climbs. They were looking at Bagargui etc., I wouldn't at all mind them going into that area rather than sticking to climbs we all know inside out and back to front.
Also what is annoying is that ASO seems to think that two hard-core MTF finishes will do the job of splitting the favourites ahead of the time trial because they are just hard and so people will attack and race hard. Ehm, not too sure on that..
This is kind of a boring thing to say but fundamentally there's nothing much the organizers can do if a team decides to show up with a Death Star Team. Grand Colombier was awful but run that climb with the kind of teams likely to show up to a Vuelta and suddenly it's likely an amazing stage.

Ineos will show up with Ganna, Dennis, Castroviejo etc ready to blow up the field on every MTF and next year Prudhomme will overreact and run a TT through the Trouee d'Arnberg or something. Same as it ever was.
 
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