Tour de France 2018 Route Revealed

Lee Parish, 21st October 2017

The 105th edition of the Tour de France is one of the shortest in recent years with a total distance of 3,329km. The 21 days of racing includes a classic finish at L’Alpe d’Huez after three days in the Alps, and then a grand finale of mountain stages in the Pyrenees, before the hilly 31km time trial on the final weekend that will decide the winner of the yellow jersey.

Race director Christian Prudhomme confirmed ASO’s desire to shake up the racing whenever possible.

“We especially wanted to emphasize stage variety and the routes that may prove decisive, combining legendary climbs with brand new ascensions or ultra-dynamic formats, to provide a vision of modern and inspired cycling,” Prudhomme said.

Stage 17 to the summit of the Col de Portet is only 65km long but half of the stage is uphill. It is the shortest road stage of the 2018 Tour but could be one of the hardest. The Col de Portet includes 16km at 8.7% to finish at 2,216 metres above sea level – it has been described as a new Tourmalet.

Stage 17 profile - 2018 TDF

We cycled the Col de Portet from Velo Pyrenees yesterday to see what it was like -view it here on Strava. Could this really be the new Tourmalet? Is it tougher or just hype? We will come back to these questions soon with a separate post.

Col de Portet

Interestingly, Stage 16 takes the TDF yet again into Spanish territory via Val d'Aran (35km from Velo Pyrenees) and the Col du Portilhon - proving popular with the Tour in recent years not to mention our guests here. Stage 16 to Bagneres-du-Luchon (Luchon) is 218km long and includes three major climbs in the last 80km.

Stage 16 profile - 2018 TDF

Stage 19 heads back into the high Pyrenees for 200km of racing that includes the Col du Tourmalet (at km 108), the Col des Bordères, the Col du Soulor and the Col d’Aubisque. All will likely hurt before the descent to the finish in Laruns. The 2018 Tour de France will be about descending as well as climbing.

Chris Froome could celebrate his fifth victory in 2018 and join the greats of the sport. However this technical course also suits Tom Dumoulin (Team Sunweb), Richie Porte (BMC) and Vincenzo Nibali (Bahrain-Merida). It seems that the race director is trying to challenge Froome whilst also making the route shorter and more aggressive for the spectators.

Map of 2018 Tour de France

The Pyrenees Stages:

Stage 15 on July 22: Millau – Carcassonne, 181km

Rest day on July 23: Carcassonne

Stage 16 on July 24: Carcassonne – Bagnères-de-Luchon, 218km

Stage 17 on July 25: Bagnères-de-Luchon – Saint-Lary-Soulan (Col de Portet), 65km

Stage 18 onJuly 26: Trie-sur-Baïse – Pau, 172km

Stage 19 on July 27: Lourdes – Laruns, 200km

Stage 20 on July 28: Saint-Pée-sur-Nivelle – Espelette (ITT), 31km