The route of the 2013 Critérium du Dauphiné was unveiled in Lyon on Monday morning with the queen stage taking the peloton over l’Alpe d’Huez and down the tricky descent off the mountain to Le Freney d’Oisans ahead of a summit finish at Superdévoluy.
Organisers ASO have described the Dauphiné’s penultimate day as “a unique opportunity to prepare for the 18th stage of the Tour de France,” which climbs l’Alpe d’Huez twice and also features the Freney d’Oisans descent.
Like at the Tour, the Dauphiné peloton will ride up the famous 21 bends of l’Alpe d’Huez before continuing on to the Col de Sarenne pass ahead of the descent to Le Freney d’Oisans. Rather than swing around and go back up the Alpe, however, stage 7 of the Dauphiné will see the peloton tackle the Col du Noyer before finishing at Superdévoluy.
The beginning of the Dauphiné is an innovative one as the race starts in Switzerland for the first time. Rather than the traditional prologue, the Dauphiné gets underway with a hilly 121km stage starting and finishing in Champéry.
Two days that will pit the escapees against the sprinters follow before the crucial stage 4 time trial from Villars-les-Dombes to Parc des Oiseaux. The two time trials at the July’s Tour de France are 32 and 33 kilometres long, respectively, and in keeping with recent tradition, the Dauphiné follows suit – the time trial here is 32.5km in length and on a rolling course.
The denouement of the race begins in earnest on stage 5 with a summit finish at Valmorel. A rugged day to Grenoble precedes a weekend double header in the high mountains wraps up proceedings.
Stage 7 on the Saturday is 184km in length and brings the race over the l’Alpe d’Huez/Col de Sarenne and the Col du Noyer before the new summit finish to Superdévoluy. The final stage includes the Col de Vars and there is scarcely a metre of flat in the final 40 kilometres ahead of the finish at Risoul.
2013 Critérium du Dauphiné route:
Sunday 2nd June, stage 1: Champéry-Champéry, 121 km
Monday 3rd June, stage 2: Châtel - Oyonnax, 183 km
Tuesday 4th June, stage 3: Ambérieu-en-Bugey - Tarare, 164 km
Wednesday 5th June, stage 4: Villars-les-Dombes – Parc des Oiseaux, 32.5 km (individual time-trial).
Thursday 6thJune, stage 5: Grésy-sur-Aix - Valmorel, 139 km
Friday 7th June, stage 6: La Léchère - Grenoble, 141.5 km
Saturday 8th June, stage 7: Le Pont-de-Claix - Superdévoluy, 184 km
Sunday 9th June, stage 8: Sisteron -Risoul, 152 km