- Jun 20, 2005
In a change from last year's success story of the London prologue, the 2008 Tour will kick off without its short time trial to establish a first distinct general classification. Instead, the riders will head from Brest over 195 kilometres to Plumelec, in Brittany. Time trial specialists will be disappointed to find the first contre-la-montre short, with only 29 kilometres. The second time trial, on the penultimate day of the race, is 53 kilometres long. No team time trial will be part of the route, but the monument of Alpe d'Huez is back in the mix. Climbers will be elated that four mountain top finishesguncha said:
guncha said:I think this route looks excellent and big guns should be in form from 4th day to 20th day.
* There is no TTT.
* The first ITT is on 4th day and its length is 29km, while the second is 52km - a little bit less TT km than in 2006 and 2007.
* There is 4 mountaintop finishes.
* Superbesse finish might be more selective than someone thinks (11km @ 4,7%). It is nice change to have mountaintop finish on 6th day of the race.
* 2nd stage at Massif Central looks decent also but it is not for GC.
* The first Pyrenees day might not be very selective because Aspin is 24km from finish.
* The second Pyrenees stage must be a real classic with Tourmalet and Hautacam - there should be first real GC shaking.
* The final Pyrenees stage is just a transitional day.
* First Alpine day with Prato Nevoso looks very solid. On the other hand there is no other cat.1 or H.C. climbs.
http://ciclismo.sitiasp.it/altimetria.aspx?sid=3d17ce592daf48379c0ef2bdace29928&id=1292 - the profile of Prato Nevoso
* The 2nd Alpine day with Lombarde and Bonette at 2800 looks very hard and it should one of the major tests.
* Final Alpine day has 3 H.C. Galibier, Croix-de-Fer and finish at Alpe D'Huez. It is the queen stage of the tour.
* After Alps the returns to Massif Central which has 13,7km @ 5.5% climb 34km to go.
I don't you can call this route is ****; I don't think it is worse than typical Giro route.
There is 3 ugly stages (Hautacam, Bonette, Alpe D'Huez), a stage with hard mountaintop finish (Prato Nevoso), mountaintop finish for "warm-up" (Superbesse), some test might be done at Bagnères-de-Bigorre stage. Also Medium Mountain stages looks more difficult than usual. This time we have 3 stages in Pyrenees, 3 in Alps, 3 in Massif Central and first week is much harder than usual.
Despite access to perhaps better medicine, I think of Levi and Cadel as being very similar riders, but I might be wrong. So I have trouble imagining that it sucks for one and is great for the other.Bro Deal said:This route sucks for Evans. There is only one long time trial and it comes near the end of the race. I don't recall his second long ITTs being as strong as his first ones.
Leipheimer must be salivating over the route. He has done well in 30K time trials for a long time, and whatever Disco did to him in the second half of the Tour made him time trial well at 60K at the end of the Tour.
For at least the last two Tours Evans has not performed that well in the final week's time trial. Leipheimer has not done that well in the first time trial and much better in the second. I think Leipheimer is being topped off with blood during the Tour and whatever Evans does is done in training. Evans weakens during the last week while the Disco riders have a nice step up in performance.Crankyfeet said:Despite access to perhaps better medicine, I think of Levi and Cadel as being very similar riders, but I might be wrong. So I have trouble imagining that it sucks for one and is great for the other.
This does look like a good route for Cunego, maybe the best he can hope for.Andrija said:Cunego said long time ago his main objective in 2008 will be the Tour. I believe he is pleased with the route.
But I'm not sure he's mature enough yet for the Tour.
I don't know if there was a Slipstream representative but I am sure that they will be invited. The US market is to important for ASO, they need a US team.Bro Deal said:Since Soler was made a guest of honor at the Tour presentation, it seems likely that Barloworld will be invited. Was a representative of Slipstream at the presentation?
I really don't know... It would be huge surprise if he doesn't ride the Giro at all. So I think he'll ride it for sure. It depends on route if it'll be competitive or just preparation ride... With this kind of Tour route and his long time ago announced plans it's more likely it'll be preparation Giro (with some stages targeted)... It would be too much for him to target both races, I think.Bro Deal said:This does look like a good route for Cunego, maybe the best he can hope for.
Does his plans for the 2008 Tour mean he will ride the Giro as training and not as a contender?
I think its the best route in years.Bro Deal said:So no time bonuses. Does this lead to a less exciting final two Ks on a climb because contenders won't be worried about losing twenty seconds, or does it add more excitement as riders are forced to eek out their gains on the road?
For climbers who can sprint uphill, like Cunego and Contador, this is not good.
The more I look at this route, the better it looks.
cyclingheroes said:I think its the best route in years.
there could be someone from the second tier who could win on this route.whiteboytrash said:did anyone note this:
Time bonuses being abandoned could lead to a tighter and more dramatic Tour, especially in the high mountains where decisive gaps between riders are often built early on.