Stage 17: Embrun - L'Alpe d'Huez
This is the stage that all climbers want to win. Those mythical 21 hairpin bends have become synonymous with the Tour de France and a year without the Alpe seems somehow to have something missing. This is a long stage that takes in the familiar – but no less brutal – Cols du Galibier and Croix de Fer, although as a change they are tackled in a different order from usual.
In all likelihood, the main contenders will sit behind their team-mates for as long as possible and look to make their move on the final steep climb to Alpe d'Huez. The non super-climbers high up in the overall – if there are any left at this stage – will be looking to hold on for as long as possible. For the sprinters however, this will be a day of pure suffering.
The small town of Embrun must think all of its Christmases have come at once as this is their second stage of the Tour this year (they have been awarded the start of stage 15 due to rock falls in the Alps forcing a course change.) Alpe d'Huez on the other hand has hosted the Tour 25 times since that first time in 1952 when Fausto Coppi won, this equates to almost every other year.
Last time the Tour finished here, in 2006, it saw the emergence of Fränk Schleck (CSC) as a future major force in Grand Tours as he dropped riders like former Giro d'Italia winner Damiano Cunego (Lampre) on the way to victory.
Latest on Cyclingnews
Giro and Vuelta court Egan Bernal after Tour de France abandonCarapaz to ride Vuelta a España alongside Chris Froome
Tour de France 2020 stage 19 - finish line quotesHear from stage winner Kragh Andersen, as well as Bennett, Pinot, Roglic, and Trentin
Tour de France: Soren Kragh Andersen wins stage 19Roglic takes yellow jersey into penultimate stage time trial
How to watch the Tour de France – live streaming, TV, highlights, analysis and moreWatch all the action as the race approaches Paris
Thank you for signing up to Cycling News. You will receive a verification email shortly.
There was a problem. Please refresh the page and try again.