What would you do to make the Tour more interesting?

Apr 25, 2009
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On British Eurosport, someone tweeted in asking if there was one thing you would do to make the Tour more interesting what would you do?

Sean Kelly said 'Shorter stages'.

Have to agree, also smaller teams for me. No radios is the other frequent one. Any more?
 
gingerwallaceafro said:
On British Eurosport, someone tweeted in asking if there was one thing you would do to make the Tour more interesting what would you do?

Sean Kelly said 'Shorter stages'.

Have to agree, also smaller teams for me. No radios is the other frequent one. Any more?
Front load the race, make every mountain easier than the last, so every stage those behind have to go for it because this could be their last chance.

Also long stages are excellent, the Giro does 220+ mountain stages so well.
 
Nov 14, 2011
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The Vuelta tends to use shorter stages; is it more exciting?

I'd do nothing. I quite like it the way it is.
 
Feb 17, 2012
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How should shorter stages make anything different. Race would just start a couple of hours later than normal. Tv-time would be exactly the same - as would the race itself.
 
Jul 16, 2010
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7 man teams for starters. Shorter stages to compensate, but the queen stages would still be 200km+.

Flat stages would be not longer than 150km. I'd either ditch the silly prologue or put bonus seconds back in the race. I don't want to spend another week looking at Cancellara in yellow, it happens every freaking year. And one serious mountain stage in the first week. Preferably on a Sunday. 3km rule would not count on stages with an uphill finish longer than a km.

Bonus seconds would be on offer on mountains/hills in the same way KoM points are distributed. 20 seconds if you cross a HC/1st category mountain first, 18 for second, 16 for third, etc

Time bonus would be halved for second category mountains and again for third category. No time bonus on fourth category hills unless it's the finish.
 
Nov 14, 2011
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DominicDecoco said:
How should shorter stages make anything different. Race would just start a couple of hours later than normal. Tv-time would be exactly the same - as would the race itself.
And i suppose the breakaways would be kept on an even shorter leash
 
Put a LBL styled stage on the Wednesday in the first week. Add in time bonuses and you'll have a scrap.

I mean seriously Sky, BMC & RSNT have done nothing all week. And this is the Tour?
 
Jul 1, 2012
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Time bonus for Sprint and Mountain Points during stages and also for stage wins.....

That would mix things up for sure......and maybe 2 or 3 sprints in each stage. would reward break aways more by doing this
 
May 2, 2010
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Supress the first week. Add an extra week with stages of 300 km or more and several HC mountains in them. That's the way it used to be when they didn't have gear changes, or team buses, or EPO or any other sh*it like that.

I'd be riveted to the telly watching the carnage. And so most of you, I'm pretty sure.
 
Cobbles. Preferably cobbled hills up in the French Flanders zone, maybe a stage finish in Cassel.
An early puncheur or medium mountain stage (circa stage 4) which is difficult enough to open time gaps.
Real mountain stages, with multiple mountains. Preferably using west- and east-Pyrenean climbs since we only ever use the same areas there. There are so many super climbs that are going unused - Errozate, Arnostegi, Jau, Batère, L'Aberouat, Tentes, Troumouse, Val Pelouse, Mont du Chat, Solaison, Pierre Carrée, Mantet, Méribel - that it surely can't be that difficult to vary things once in a while?
Alpes-Maritimes.
Remove the sprint-weighting of the Points competition.
Award more UCI points for the secondary jerseys than are available for 6th place.
Award more UCI points for victories in the mountain stages than are available for 10th place.
Get rid of the yellow helmets.
Ban any rider who wears a skinsuit in a road race from competing.
 
Sep 21, 2009
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Libertine Seguros said:
Cobbles. Preferably cobbled hills up in the French Flanders zone, maybe a stage finish in Cassel.
An early puncheur or medium mountain stage (circa stage 4) which is difficult enough to open time gaps.
Real mountain stages, with multiple mountains. Preferably using west- and east-Pyrenean climbs since we only ever use the same areas there. There are so many super climbs that are going unused - Errozate, Arnostegi, Jau, Batère, L'Aberouat, Tentes, Troumouse, Val Pelouse, Mont du Chat, Solaison, Pierre Carrée, Mantet, Méribel - that it surely can't be that difficult to vary things once in a while?
Alpes-Maritimes.
Remove the sprint-weighting of the Points competition.
Award more UCI points for the secondary jerseys than are available for 6th place.
Award more UCI points for victories in the mountain stages than are available for 10th place.
Get rid of the yellow helmets.
Ban any rider who wears a skinsuit in a road race from competing.
You just forgot banning all kind of electronic gadgets: race radios, HRMs and power meters. Oh, and electronic gear shifts, too. I don't wanna miss the chance for a chain drop from time to time ;)
 
Jun 25, 2012
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Allow headbutting..


On a more serious note..

I would ban radio communication and make the 3 other jerseys worthwhile getting.
 
TDF management to hire Zomegnan as a parcours designer & luckily the organizers will finally realize how critical is to place either a big MTF stage or a multiple medium mountains in the first week where riders won't get eliminated by absurd crashes, but by some aggressive riding
 
Jun 20, 2010
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Unicycles would be fun. This is how a unicycle sprint looks: :p



On the other hand, the downhills would be scary :eek:
 
Jan 22, 2011
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I think most people would agree with me, that adding a selective mountain stage in the first week would make the race more interesting (and safe)
 
Dec 27, 2010
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The best first week in recent years was 2008, and when you look at the parcours on offer then, it's little wonder.
 
Feb 23, 2012
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gingerwallaceafro said:
On British Eurosport, someone tweeted in asking if there was one thing you would do to make the Tour more interesting what would you do?

Sean Kelly said 'Shorter stages'.

Have to agree, also smaller teams for me. No radios is the other frequent one. Any more?
Glad you asked

I can't believe the Tour is currently considered as the greatest cycling race.

It is soo boring:
- 1st week - sprints, 1 or 2 uphill finish but no time gaps, small teams desperately trying to get on TV through breakaways, GC riders trying to avoid crashes and not waste any time
- 1st Mountains - a few climbs but not to much, because ASO thinks it's important to keep the suspense until the last Saturday. No moves from GC riders trying to save it for the last week
- Between Alps and Pyrenees - useless stages for breakaways, no changes to be expected in GC. Will any French rider manage to win a stage this year ?
- 2nd Mountains - real mountain stages
- Last Saturday: long ITT scaring climbers, and pushing them to attack in the few days before
- Last Sunday: useless Champs-Elysees stage, beautiful but the race is already over since yesterday.

It definitely needs some changes. We need balance. We need stages that look like classics. We need surprises when ASO unveils the profiles..



Here are my suggestions:

1) Start on Friday evening - prologue by night, with road lights, in a big city. The Tour needs to be a show as well.

2) Have 3 rest days, well balanced during the Tour:
* Every 5 stages, Thursday of 1st week, Wednesday of 2nd week, Tuesday of 3rd week.
* It can be useful to make the riders travel a long distance, and for injured/sick ones to get better.
* Before every rest day, stage should be really hard and 250km + long. They have a day to recover.
* The 4 splits should have minimum 1, maximum 2, flat stages for sprinters.
Between 5 and 7 flat stages in the whole Tour. We should NEVER have 2 "sprinters" stages in a row. Please ASO I beg you.

3) Ban Team-Time Trial.
If a team is strong, it already has 20 other stages to show it...

4) Prevent the boring first week by putting more hilly stages.
* By hilly, I mean an Amstel Gold Race or Liege-Bastogne-Liege profile, with at least 10-12 short climbs, 250km+ long, which Ardennes Classics riders would enjoy, and where GC riders could make some moves.
* With proper hilly stages, no need to have time bonuses to make the first week more interesting.
* We can go in Jura, Vosges, Massif Central, French Flanders, etc. Believe me there are some hills everywhere in France, even if ASO does not realize it.

5) Why not try a 1st week stage in some of the gravel roads used in Tro Bro Leon ?

6) Have 1 or 2 steep uphill finish (same kind of finish than Mur de Huy), once again there are some steep roads everywhere in France. The issue is that ASO is just not looking for them.
For example, in the Tour du Haut-Var they have this kind of finish every year.

7) 3 ITTs including Prologue
The 2 remaining ITT would have completely different profiles. (This year the 2 long ITTs are identical, it's a shame)
* One 55-60 km long, all flat. If ridden in north of France, why not include a few cobblestones sections ?
* The other one would be either a mountains ITT: 20km + in legendary climb: Mont Ventoux, Tourmalet, Galibier,...
either a 40km+ hilly ITT (with three or four 3rd/2nd category climbs)

8) Have a few mountain stages (around 4), including 2 "queen" mountain stages:
* 1 in the Alps + 1 in Pyrenees, ideally before a rest day
250 km+, almost no flat section, 6 climbs - like the stage Nieve won on the Giro, where riders arrived 1 by 1 and exhausted.

9) Get rid of the useless Champs Elysees stage (or maybe have it once every three or four years).
We could have the Tour ending in Lyon, Marseille, Bordeaux, Nice, Strasbourg - maybe even have a real stage, with climbs who knows ?

10) Otherwise, I'm fine with the team radios. And by the 9 riders per team.
 
Jun 22, 2012
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Currently, all it takes for a GC contender to be put out of action is a crash marred stage like last night's Stage 6. A tour can be over, even before the first TT or before the first mountain stages.

My solution would be to have a lot of TOUGH stages in the first week, so that even if a GC guy loses out on one stage, there is a chance to make the time back in the other tough stages.

To that end, the first week, in my oinion, should include the following type of stages:

Prologue. approx. 15km to create some time gaps;

Stage 1. A tough opening stage similar to an Ardennes classic (perhaps roughly similar to stage 2 of the 2010 Tour, but finishing on a steep climb like the Mur de Huy to create time gaps and no 3km rule!);

Stage 2. Flat sprinters stage, but preferably somewhere windy;

Stage 3. Flat stage with significant cobbled sections (similar to stage 3 from the 2010 Tour);

Stage 4. Hilly stage with some cobbled climbs, preferably also finishing on a cobbled climb;

Stage 5. Really hard hilly stage with flat sprint finish, with multiple cat 3 and 4 climbs, including near the start and with the last one about 10km from the finish, to enable breakaways to have a chance. Something roughly similar to stage 6 of this years Giro but with less flat kms at the end. Sprinters should have to work hard if they want to win stages :D

Stage 6. A medium mountain stage with a finish similar to tonight's finish at La Planche des Belles Filles, but with at least 4 or 5 categorised climbs before the final climb, not just 2.

With a first week like this, even if you lost a minute or 2 on one of the stages, you could potentially recover it on one of the other early stages. :)
 
Mar 10, 2009
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1) No more opening prologues or TTs (individual or team). Start the tour with a proper stage - and rouleur at that.

2) Bring back time bonuses for all flat and rouleur stages. It promotes racing. And it will prevent riders from being in yellow for 7 days after just 4 miles of racing.

3) Enough with stages that have a superb HC climb followed by 60 k of downhill and flat. If you don't end with a mountain top finish, the stage should have at minimum 5 climbs. They don't need to be all Cat1s and HCs either.

4) I'm not a fan of ITTs or TTTs, however I understand the need for at least the ITTs. So, have 2. The first one should come late in the first week - maybe 20k. The second should come right before the second set of mountain stages - maybe a hilly TT, or one with a climb - around 30-35k

But really - my 2 biggest are no more opening ITTs or prologues and to bring back the time bonuses on all sprint stages and all mountain top finishes.
 
Mar 26, 2011
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Make it a true tour, where they ride a 3000+km route carrying their own camping luggage. No motorized assistance whatsoever. Get back to basics, have it be gritty and real like back in the old days. Camera crews move into the camp after every race and record the drama "MTV real world" style.. Maybe allow some outside assistance (medical perhaps)... but the less the better.

Todays modern surgicaly precise, planned out, high tech tour, is incredibly boring...

Cycling desperately needs some innovation.. it could be sooo entertaining.
 
Jul 6, 2010
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Sniper nests hidden throughout the course.

A daily random draw where one rider gets shot off his bike at no specific time.

The yanks would love it!
 
Aug 16, 2011
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Libertine Seguros said:
Cobbles. Preferably cobbled hills up in the French Flanders zone, maybe a stage finish in Cassel.
An early puncheur or medium mountain stage (circa stage 4) which is difficult enough to open time gaps.
Real mountain stages, with multiple mountains. Preferably using west- and east-Pyrenean climbs since we only ever use the same areas there. There are so many super climbs that are going unused - Errozate, Arnostegi, Jau, Batère, L'Aberouat, Tentes, Troumouse, Val Pelouse, Mont du Chat, Solaison, Pierre Carrée, Mantet, Méribel - that it surely can't be that difficult to vary things once in a while?
Alpes-Maritimes.
Remove the sprint-weighting of the Points competition.
Award more UCI points for the secondary jerseys than are available for 6th place.
Award more UCI points for victories in the mountain stages than are available for 10th place.
Get rid of the yellow helmets.
Ban any rider who wears a skinsuit in a road race from competing.
Agreed but I would also add

-no more than one flat ITT. If you are going to have a second ITT, it needs to be in the mountains

-as I put in another thread, somehow stop teams taking 8 domestics for one rider. I don't know how. It would mean a variety of riders from each team, and stop GC teams blocking the front of the peleton on sprint days with 8 domestics and stop 8 man sprint trains from giving their their sprinter a free ride. it would hopefully mean that in the race that is meant to be the showcase for road cycling, we get the teams 9 best riders and not I top rider and 8 domestics.
 

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