Stage 15: Givors - Mont Ventoux
When the going gets tough...
It's Bastille Day, the next day is a rest day and the finish is atop one of the Tour's most renowned peaks. This is also the race's longest day, so everyone will need to hold back as much as they can for those final 21km. Once again, plenty of riders will want to get into the break but their chances of fending off the GC hopefuls will be a lot slimmer than they were into Lyon. The stage bumps through the Drôme region, reaching the foothills of the Ventoux beyond Nyons, where the riders will start a half-circuit of 'The Bald Mountain', passing over the Col de la Madeleine and into Bédoin. From there the road starts to rise gently to reach the first sweeping bend, which launches the riders up into thick forest that hides the steepest ramps. Coming out of the trees at Châlet Reynard, the riders enter the Ventoux's barren moonscape. The direction of the wind is crucial. Usually, it's from the front, potentially nullifying attacking intentions. It's a devilish climb to judge well but quite an easy one to make a hash of.
The Ventoux finish in 2009 will give today's escapees some sustenance. Juan Manuel Gárate and Tony Martin survived from the break that day, the Spaniard beating the German on the final ramp. The yellow jersey group stuck pretty much together in a strong headwind, although Bradley Wiggins did lose some ground.
Maps and profiles courtesy of ASO
Latest on Cyclingnews
Chris Anker Sørensen killed in crash at World ChampionshipsDanish former pro reportedly struck by driver while riding in Flanders
UCI Road World Championships 2021 - Elite Men's ITT Start ListDefending champion Filippo Ganna lines up with 57 others in Flanders for race of truth
Annemiek van Vleuten confirms start at first-ever Paris-Roubaix Femmes'It’s a big milestone and it's important that we are taken seriously'
Miguel Ángel López heading back to Astana for Vinokourov reunionColombian set for return following confirmation of Movistar exit
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.