Tour de France 2017

The most epic cycling event of the year: the Tour de France! Together with Cyclingnews, we'll bring you the ins and outs of the 21 stages. On y va!

Stage 19: Embrun to Salon-de-Provence

"Chris Froome (Team Sky) tends to feel good in Embrun, the start town of today’s lilting descent back onto the plains. In 2008 on his Tour de France debut, the stage started here and finished on Alpe d’Huez."

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Stage 1: Düsseldorf
"If Düsseldorf, the ninth-biggest city in Germany and not even the largest in the North Rhine-Westphalia region, was in search of a selling point beyond the fashion industry and altbier, it now has one: the Grand Départ of the Tour de France."
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Stage 2: Düsseldorf - Liège
"Tour organisers ASO have resisted the urge to send the riders up the hills of one of their other races, Liège-Bastogne-Liège, for stage 2 of the 2017 Tour."
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Stage 3: Verviers - Longwy
"These are volatile times in Europe, but a stage which passes through three countries (taking 2017's total to four) in a day is not just a bike race, but a statement of geographical realpolitik and unity"
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Stage 4: Mondotf-les-Bains - Vittel
"Vittel has history in the Tour. It was the symbolic location chosen by the Tour organisers for the Grand Départ in 1968."
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Stage 5: Vittel - La Planche de Belles Filles
"Planche des Belles Filles, which comes at the end of stage five and is the first category-one climb of the 2017 Tour, has recently been written into the race's narrative. It was first included in 2012, and again in 2014."
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Stage 6: Visoul - Troyes
"After the Vosges, stage 6 is an uncomplicated run between Vesoul and Troyes. This is what's known as 'La France Profonde' – deep France."
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Stage 7: Troyes - Nuits-Saint-Georges
"The peloton leaves the Champagne town of Troyes and heads down to the Burgundian terroir of Nuits-St-Georges, whose rolling fields and alluvium soils are perfect for growing pinot noir."
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Stage 8: Dole - Sation des Rousses
"There are two pinch points during the stage: the third-category Col de la Joux and the second category Côte de Viry, but the real crux is the first-category Montée de la Combe de Laisia les Molunes, which starts 23km before the finish and lasts 11.7km."
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Stage 9: Nantua - Chambery
"When the 2017 Tour de France route was unveiled, the main criticism was that the big summit finishes had been missed. The Col d'Izoard apart, there was no Alpe d'Huez and no Ventoux. But the route planners may be on to something here."
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Stage 10: Perigueux - Bergerac
"As the crow flies, Périgueux and Bergerac are only 40km apart and there is a direct road between them, but ASO are taking the peloton on a 178km diversion to the east of the two towns before finding the Dordogne river and following it back to Bergerac for, most likely, a sprint."
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Stage 11: Eymet – Pau
"Possibly the last nailed-on sprint stage of the Tour de France before Paris, this flat day lies in stark contrast to the following stages. The peloton will set off from Eymet, a small town in the Dordogne. Eymet has a large British expat population, meaning the Team Sky bus should be busy in the morning."
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Stage 12: Pau – Peyragudes
"Peyragudes was the backdrop for a scene in the 1997 Bond movie Tomorrow Never Dies, but tomorrow (and its three climbs) is the least of the peloton's worries as they contemplate a long day in the saddle and a summit finish today."
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Stage 13: Saint-Girons to Foix
"A trip on the D118 road that links Saint-Girons and Foix is only 44km long, and the Tour de France route planners haven’t expanded much on that short trip. This 101km stage is a continuation of a recent trend in the Grand Tours for short, sharp days in the mountains."
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Stage 14: Blagnac to Rodez
"This is a classic transition stage that heads across the Occitanie region to the edge of the Massif Central and. If the puncheurs don’t get their way, should provide an opportunity for those who make the break."
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Stage 15: Laissac-Sévérac l'Église to Le Puy-en-Velay
"One of the oddest-looking profiles of the whole Tour de France makes this stage a tough one to predict. Rolling roads all day, plus two first-category climbs almost bookending the stage, mean there are a variety of possibilities."
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Stage 16: Le Puy-en-Velay to Romans-sur-Isère
"Le Puy, once famed for its lentils and lace, lies in a depression in the heart of the Massif Central. The three main roads into the city crest over 1,000m high, making it an isolated city in an already isolated region."
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Stage 17: La Mure to Serre-Chevalier
"Here we go: the Alps. The first Tour de France stage of the final mountain range gets going in La Mure, a modest town south of Grenoble, whose claim to fame is being the penultimate stop on the Route Napoléon."
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Stage 18: Briancon to Izoard
"The 2017 Tour de France goes above 2,000m four times in the whole race, and it does it all in the space of two days. If yesterday was bad, then today could be worse as the finish line is right up in the dead air at 2,360m above sea level."
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