• France's news in English

VIDEO: 2014 Tour de France route unveiled

AFP/The Local · 23 Oct 2013, 12:23

Published: 23 Oct 2013 12:23 GMT+02:00

Facebook Twitter Google+ reddit

One hundred years after the start of the Great War, cycling's most famous race will pay tribute to the millions killed in one of history's bloodiest conflicts, visiting towns and countryside devastated by four years of fighting.

Stage five starts in Ypres, in the Flanders region of western Belgium, which was the scene of sustained and intensive fighting between German and Allied forces.

Stages six and seven visit Arras, the Chemin des Dames, Verdun and Douaumont - all sites of key battles and home to memorials to the fallen - and a finish in Reims, in Champagne country, where French kings were once crowned.

The cycling tribute comes amid commemorations across France, Europe and the rest of the world to the conflict that helped shape the violent history of the 20th century.

(Photo: www.LeTour.fr)

The 101st edition of the Tour de France overall includes six mountain stages with five summit finishes and a stage tackling the cobblestones that are the hallmark of the Paris-Roubaix classic.

There is also just one time-trial for the first time since the 1950s, all of which will provide defending champion Chris Froome with a tough test in a race likely to favour climbers.

Kenya-born Briton Froome, who rides for Team Sky, revealed recently that he was not looking forward to reports of a cobbled stage and was hoping for a maximum amount of time-trials to favour him over more adept, smaller, lighter climbers.

Froome retained the title for Britain in the Tour's 100th edition last year after compatriot Bradley Wiggins became the country's first-ever winner in 2012.

British cycling fans will be hoping for a third, straight win for the nation, particularly as the race starts on July 5 in the northern English city of Leeds and includes two opening stages in the county of Yorkshire.

The peloton will head to mainland Europe on July 8 after a third stage from the historic university city of Cambridge in eastern England with a finish outside Queen Elizabeth II's London residence Buckingham Palace.

★ OFFICIAL 2014 TOUR DE FRANCE ROUTE ★ RT if you like it. #TDF pic.twitter.com/syScG5qYgP

— Le Tour De France (@letour) October 23, 2013

Froome's potential challengers next year are likely to be 2013 King of the Mountains Nairo Quintana, Giro D'Italia winner Vincenzo Nibali and two-time Tour champion Alberto Contador.

The penultimate stage, a 54-kilometre (33.5-mile) test against the clock between Bergerac and Perigueux in the southwestern Dordogne region, could provide Froome with his last chance to overhaul the climbers before they arrive in Paris.

"Time-trials provide greater time gaps than the mountains, sometimes insurmountable ones," explained Tour director Christian Prudhomme.

SEE ALSO: Top Ten hidden attractions in France

"Having the time-trial at the end is so the climbers don't have to chase but can ride in front and not become demoralised."

Froome and the rest of the peloton will get an early indication of the hard work ahead in the final 30km of the second stage from York to Sheffield, which organisers described as a "British version of Liege-Bastogne-Liege".

Across the Channel, there will be little time to relax before the 156km fifth stage from Ypres to Arenberg Porte du Hainaut and more than 15km of cobblestones spread over nine different sections.

Stage seven, from Epernay to Nancy, is the longest, covering a gruelling 233km.

The first summit finishes come in the Vosges region with the 161km stage eight from Tomblaine to Gerardmer and then the return of La Planche des Belles Filles at the end of stage 10.

It was there on the final 20km ramp that Froome earnt his first stage victory in 2012 and the 161km stage, with a final 5.9km climb averaging a punishing 8.5 percent gradient, could shake up the race and suit the likes of punchy finisher Joaquim Rodriguez.

The first Alpine summit finish arrives on Stage 13 at Chamrousse at the end of 200km with an 18.2km climb averaging 7.3 percent.

Story continues below…

The high Alps beckon the following day with a 177km stage that crests the Cols du Lautaret and D'Izoard before finishing on the Risoul.

Stages 17 and 18 are relatively short at 125km and 145km but have Pyreneen summit finishes at Saint-Lary-Soulan and Hautacam.

The time-trial comes a day before the survivors roll onto the Champs Elysees in Paris on July 26.

This video below is thanks to www.letour.fr

Parcours 2014 en 3D / The 2014 route in 3D par tourdefrance


Stage 1: Saturday, July 5 - Leeds, England, to Harrogate, England, 191
kilometres (119 miles)
   Stage 2: Sunday, July 6 - York, England, to Sheffield, England, 198km
   Stage 3: Monday, July 7 - Cambridge, England, to London, 159km
   Stage 4: Tuesday, July 8 - Le Touquet-Paris-Plage to Lille, 164km
   Stage 5: Wednesday, July 9 - Ypres, Belgium - Arenberg Porte du Hainault,
   Stage 6: Thursday, July 10 - Arras to Reims, 194km
   Stage 7: Friday, July 11 - Epernay to Nancy, 233km
   Stage 8: Saturday, July 12 - Tomblaine to Gerardmer, 161km
   Stage 9: Sunday, July 13 - Gerardmer to Mulhouse, 166km
   Stage 10: Monday, July 14 - Mulhouse to La Planche des Belles Filles, 161km
   Rest day: Tuesday, July 15
   Stage 11: Wednesday, July 16 - Besancon to Oyonnax, 186km
   Stage 12: Thursday, July 17 - Bourg-en-Bresse to Saint-Etienne, 183km
   Stage 13: Friday, July 18 - Saint-Etienne to Chamrousse, 200km
   Stage 14: Saturday, July 19 - Grenoble to Risoul, 177km
   Stage 15: Sunday, July 20 - Tallard to Nimes, 222km
   Rest day: Monday, July 21
   Stage 16: Tuesday, July 22 - Carcassonne to Bagneres-de-Luchon, 237km
   Stage 17: Wednesday, July 23 - Saint-Gaudens to Saint-Lary-Soulan, 125km
   Stage 18: Thursday, July 24 - Pau to Hautacam, 145km
   Stage 19: Friday, July 25 - Mauborguet Pays du Val d'Adour to Bergerac,
   Stage 20: Saturday, July 26 - Bergerac to Perigueux, 54km individual
   Stage 21: Sunday, July 27 - Evry to Paris Champs-Elysees, 13

Don't miss a story about France - Join us on Facebook and Twitter

AFP/The Local (ben.mcpartland@thelocal.com)

Facebook Twitter Google+ reddit

Your comments about this article

Today's headlines
IN PICTURES: Calais Jungle camp goes up in flames
All Photos: AFP

Migrants leave behind a scorched camp as they are moved to locations across France.

French expats in UK suffer Brexit abuse
French ambassador to the UK Sylvie Bermann with Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson. Photo: AFP

French nationals no longer feel at home in the UK, ambassador says. But Brits in France have been greeted with sympathy since the referendum.

Six to go on trial in France over topless Kate photos
Photo: AFP

The topless pics sparked fury among the royals.

France sees biggest drop in jobless rate for 20 years
Photo: AFP

Good news at last. But it's unlikely to keep President François Hollande in his job.

Calais migrants given mixed reception in French towns
Photo: AFP

Some in France have shown solidarity with their new guests, while others have made it clear they are not welcome.

Lonely Planet says Bordeaux is world's best city to visit
The fantastic new Bordeaux wine museum. Photo: AFP

After The Local France, the Lonely Planet has followed suit by urging everyone to head to Bordeaux in 2017.

Jungle shacks set ablaze and torn down as camp razed
All photos: AFP

IN PICTURES: The razing of the Jungle has finally begun.

Frenchwoman finds WW1 grenade among her spuds
Photo: AFP

It could have been a very explosive family dinner.

Refugee crisis
What rights to a future in France for Calais migrants?
Photo: AFP

What does the future hold for the migrants of the Jungle? Can they work or claim social benefits or travel freely inside Europe?

Pampers nappies 'contain carcinogenics': French study
Photo: Robert Valencia/Flick

The substances in the nappies are meant to prevent skin irritation but are cancerous, the study concludes.

The annoying questions only a half French, half Brit can answer
Sponsored Article
Last chance to vote absentee in the US elections
Forget Brangelina's chateau - here are nine others you've got to see
The must-see French films of the millennium - Part One
How life for expats in France has changed over the years
Why Toulouse is THE place to be in France right now
Video: New homage to Paris shows the 'real side' of city
The 'most dangerous' animals you can find in France
Swap London fogs for Paris frogs: France woos the Brits
Anger after presenter kisses woman's breasts on live TV
Is France finally set for a cold winter this year?
IN PICS: The story of the 'ghost Metro stations' of Paris
How to make France's 'most-loved' dish: Magret de Canard
Welcome to the flipside: 'I'm not living the dream in France'
Do the French really still eat frogs' legs?
French 'delicacies' foreigners really find hard to stomach
French are the 'world's most pessimistic' about the future
Why the French should not be gloomy about the future
This is the most useful French lesson you will ever have. How to get angry
Why is there a giant clitoris in a field in southern France?
French pastry wars: Pain au chocolat versus chocolatine
Countdown: The ten dishes the French love the most
Expats or immigrants in France: Is there a difference?
How the French reinvented dozens of English words
jobs available