After three years of racing on the iconic Champs-Élysées in Paris, La Course, the women’s one-day counterpart to the Tour de France, will move to the mountains. The race will run from Briançon to Izoard — a summit finish — on July 20, before stage 18 of the men’s race.
The route will be short, 67 kilometers, and it will finish with a 10km climb to Casse Déserte, which boasts an average gradient of over nine percent. Tour de France organizer ASO revealed the new format Tuesday, along with the complete Tour de France route.
The 2016 edition of La Course was won by Australian sprinter Chloe Hosking, riding for Wiggle – High5. The coming year will instead favor a climber, such as Lizzie Deignan, who won Trofeo Alfredo Binda in 2016, or American Megan Guarnier, winner of the Giro Rosa.
However, there is a chance that Marianne Vos, winner of the inaugural running of La Course, three-time world road champion, and winner of 19 stages at the Giro Rosa, could conquer the Izoard. Arguably the greatest women’s cyclist of all time, Vos is capable of climbing with the best and holding her own in the bunch sprints. She will race for a new team in 2017, Fortitude Cycling, a squad she organized from the remnants of the now-shuttered Rabo-Liv team.