The organizers of the Tour de France have chosen a profile for the upcoming edition of the most important cycling tour, which again favors the mountain specialists. The Tour 2020 (June 27 to July 15) stops in all five major mountain ranges in France, with four mountain arrivals will be a total of 29 mountains to cross.
The tour starts in the coastal city of Nice in the southeast of France and ends after 3470 kilometers in Paris. In the overall 107th edition of the Tour de France, the favorites to defending champion Egan Bernal (Ineos), his teammates Geraint Thomas and Chris Froome, local hero Julian Alaphilippe (Quick-Step) or the German Emanuel Buchmann (Bora Hansgrohe) already directly show on the first weekend: For the first time in over 40 years, passes on more than 1,600 meters are already on the second stage.
Froome, Tour winner of the years 2013, 2015, 2016 and 2017 and last year because of a fall not at the start, has already announced that he wants to compete in the form of Ineos captain. In an interview with France Télévision, Froome said Bernal was "ready" to support him. Froome and Bernal were also at the presentation in front of 4,000 spectators in the Palais des Congrais in Paris.
Alain JOCARD / AFP
Chris Froome at the tour presentation in Paris
In addition to the usual stages in the Alps and the Pyrenees, the Massif Central, the Jura and a mountain-time trial over 36 kilometers are on the planche of Belles Filles in the Vosges on the penultimate day. These will be the only miles in the fight against the clock, which also meets the mountain specialists.
In nominal terms, eight out of 21 sections are designated as mountain stages (there were seven in 2019), but many more days offer climbing. Nine legs will flatten the label, but a sprint finish is unlikely on all. All in all, it will be one of the hardest grand bouquets in history.