This should be a stage for the sprinters, especially as there are no classified climbs on today's route. After a rolling start over the small roads of Brittany, the course joins the fast, wider roads as it heads south to the finish in Nantes.
The port town of Saint-Malo is the most-visited place in the region of Brittany. From here it is possible to catch a ferry to and from various ports in the UK and the Channel Islands. This will be the Tour's eighth visit to Saint-Malo, the last time was 1980 when Dutchman Bert Oosterbosch took victory.
This will be the 31st visit of the Tour to Nantes, situated as it is on the river Loire close to where it enters the Atlantic Ocean. The city was one of the original stage towns visited in 1903, where victory – and the race lead – was taken by eventual winner Maurice Garin. The last time was 100 years later when Britain's David Millar (then Cofidis, now Slipstream-Chipotle) won a rain-soaked time trial as Lance Armstrong (US Postal) and a crashing Jan Ullrich (Bianchi) shadowed each other for the overall.