Tour de France 2022: Women’s Tour will be held for first time in 33 years | Cycling News

The Tour de France Femmes with Zwift will feature eight stages, starting in Paris and finishing at the top of the Super Planche des Belles Filles climb; it will start on the day that the men’s Tour ends and both routes have been announced by the organisers

Last Updated: 14/10/21 12:53pm

In 2022, there will be a women's Tour de France staged for the first time since 198

In 2022, there will be a women’s Tour de France staged for the first time since 198

The women’s Tour de France returns next year, 33 years after it was last staged and will take place from July 24 to 31, 2022.

The route for the Tour de France Femmes with Zwift was announced on the same day as the route of the 2022 men’s Tour.

The women’s Tour will start from Paris and finish at the top of the Super Planche des Belles Filles climb. In total, it will be an eight-stage ride through eastern France.

“It’s a balanced route, that will suit several types of riders,” Marion Rousse, the race director, told reporters.

Christian Prudhomme, who is the men’s Tour director, said the biggest challenge was to make the race a financially sustainable event.

“If it had been [sustainable], the women’s Tour would have been held for 40 years,” he told reporters on Thursday, ahead of a presentation ceremony for the 2022 men’s and women’s Tours.

“The biggest challenge is to broadcast the race. I think we’ve done a good job, with the race starting the same day as the men’s race ends in Paris,” Prudhomme said, adding the event would be broadcast in 170 countries.

2022 Women’s Tour de France Route

July 24 Stage One Paris Tour Eiffel – Champs Elysees 82km
July 25 Stage Two Meaux – Provins 135km
July 26 Stage Three Reims – Epernay 133km
July 27 Stage Four Troyes – Bar sur Aube 126km
July 28 Stage Five Bar le Duc – St Die des Vosges 175km
July 29 Stage Six St Die des Vosges – Rosheim 128km
July 30 Stage Seven Selestat – Le Markstein 127km
July 31 Stage Eight Lure – La Super Planche des Belles Filles 123km

While more than 300 towns apply and pay to host a stage of the men’s Tour every year, Prudhomme had to approach candidates himself for the women’s race.

“But they are all paying an entry fee and to give you an element of comparison, it’s more than for [the week-long men’s stage races] Paris-Nice and the Criterium du Dauphine,” he added.

“The goal is to organise a race that will stay, that will still exist in 100 years, that I can watch when I’m old and using a walker,” Prudhomme, who is now 60-year-old, said.

The 2022 women’s Tour will run from July 24 to 31 and it commences two weeks after the end of the longest women’s race on the calendar, the Giro Donne.

‘Versatile’ riders and strong teams needed for men’s tour

Tour de France organisers have also designed a treacherous route for the 2022 men’s edition, which will feature rides in gusting winds, cobblestones and punishing mountain stages.

The race will start with a 13km individual time trial in Copenhagen, before the second stage takes the peloton over the 18km Great Belt bridge.

“It’s windy 364 days a year, here,” Tour director Prudhomme said on Thursday. “This Tour can be lost as early as the second day.”

Those who get past the three-day opening block in Denmark and fourth stage through the Flanders hills must cope with the fifth stage through cobbled sectors between Lille and Arenberg.

That is when light climbers are expected to suffer on a day that could be marred by crashes and mechanicals, due to the tricky terrain which usually favours one-day race specialists.

“To go through these stages and hope to win the Tour, you will need to be a versatile rider and have a strong team at your disposal,” Thierry Gouvenou, the Tour deputy, commented.

2022 Men’s Tour de France

July 1 Stage One Copenhagen (Individual time trial) 13km
July 2 Stage Two Roskilde – Nyborg 199km
July 3 Stage Three Vejle – Sonderborg 182km
July 4 Transfer to France
July 5 Stage Four Dunkirk – Calais 172km
July 6 Stage Five Lille – Arenberg Porte du Hainaut 155km
July 7 Stage Six Binche – Longwy 220km
July 8 Stage Seven Tomblaine – La Super Planche des Belles Filles 176km
July 9 Stage Eight Dole – Lausanne 184km
July 10 Stage Nine Aigle – Chatel Les Portes du Soleil 183km
July 11 Rest day
July 12 Stage 10 Morzine – Megeve 148km
July 13 Stage 11 Albertville – Col du Granon 149km
July 14 Stage 12 Briancon – L’Alpe d’Huez 166km
July 15 Stage 13 Bourg d’Oisans – St Etienne 193km
July 16 Stage 14 St Etienne – Mende 195km
July 17 Stage 15 Rodez – Carcassonne 200km
July 18 Rest day
July 19 Stage 16 Carcassonne – Foix 179km
July 20 Stage 17 St Gaudens – Peyragudes 130km
July 21 Stage 18 Lourdes – Hautacam 143km
July 22 Stage 19 Castelnau-Magnoac – Cahors 189km
July 23 Stage 20 Lacapelle Marival – Rocamadour (Individual time trial) 40km
July 24 Stage 21 Paris La Defense Arena – Paris Champs Elysees 112km

The first test for climbers will come on the seventh stage, with the first of five summit finishes at the top of the Planche des Belles Filles.

The race will reach its highest point at the top of the lung-busting ascent to the Col du Galibier, 2,607 metres above sea level, on the way to a summit finish at the Col du Granon (2,413 metres).

The 12th stage starts from Briancon and ends atop the iconic Alpe d’Huez (13.8km at 8.1 per cent), taking the same route as the 1986 Tour, when five-time winner Bernard Hinault and Greg LeMond crossed the line hand-in-hand for a famous one-two.

After two brutal stages in the Pyrenees, the race will be completed with a 40km individual time trial in Southwestern France and the mostly processional ride to the Champs Elysees in Paris.

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