Tour de France Route: Announcement and Reactions

News & Results

10/29/2004| 0 comments
by Gerald Churchill
2005 Tour de France.
2005 Tour de France.

Tour de France Route: Announcement and Reactions

English philosopher Thomas Hobbes described human life in a state of nature as "nasty, cruel, brutish, and short."

English philosopher Thomas Hobbes described human life in a state of nature as ?nasty, cruel, brutish, and short.? At 3,584 km, the 2005 Tour de France will be all of these except short. The race will feature three mountaintop finishes, 74 km of individual time trials, a 66-km team time trial, and 20 Category 2, Category 1, and Hors Categorie climbs. La Grande Boucle will not end soon enough for those who start it.



The 2005 Tour de France will not begin with a prologue. Instead, the riders will tackle a 19-km individual time trial from Fromentine to Noirmoutier en l?Ile. Stages 2 and 3 should end in sprints, with the second stage running from Challans to Les Essarts and the third going from La Chataigneraie to
. Stage 4, the team trial, will be the race?s first test of strength among the teams.


Stages 5 to 8 will be stages for flatlanders. Stage 5 will go from
Chambord to Montargis, and Stage 6 will take the riders from
. Stage 7 will begin in Luneville and will end in
Karlsruhe, Germany. Stage 8 will begin in
and will return the riders to
, ending in Gerardmer.


In Stage 9, the Tour will enter the
Vosges mountains. The 170-km ride from Gerardmer to
will feature six climbs, including the Ballon d?Alsace, which was the first mountain ridden in the Tour (in 1905). After the stage, the riders will transfer to
, where they will spend their first rest day.


After the rest day, the riders will take on the
Alps. Stage 10, a 192-km ride from
to Courchevel, will take the riders over the Cormet de Roseland en route to the finishing ascent. This stage will shake up the standings. Stage 11, a 173-km ride from Courchevel to Briancon, will take the riders over the Cols de la Madeleine, de Telegraphe, and du Galibier.


Stages 12 and 13 will be transitional stages. The former will be hilly and will run 187 km from Briancon to Digne-les-Bains. The latter will be a 162-km run from Miramas to
. The two stages will be lead-ins for the Pyrenean stages, which could be decisive.


Stage 14 will run 220 km from Agde to Ax-3 Domaines. The stage will feature two climbs, the Port de Pailheres and the finishing ascent. Stage 15 will be the hardest stage of the 2005 Tour. It will feature six categorized ascents, including a finishing climb. In Stage 16, the final Pyrenean stage, the riders will breast four categorized climbs within 70 km in midstage.


Stages 17 to 19 will be for the flatlanders. Stage 17 will be a 239-km run from
to Revel, and Stage 18 will take the riders 189 km from Albi to Mende. Stage 19 will run 154 km from Issoire to Le Puy-en-Velay.


Stage 20 will be a 55-km time trial at St. Etienne. It will be the final chance to take the


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