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Tour de France announces 2018 Grand Départ

Paris (AFP) – The 2018 Tour de France will start from Vendée on Sunday, June 30.

The announcement was made by race director Christian Prudhomme of the ASO (Amaury Sport Organization) at half-time of the rugby match between France and Scotland on Sunday, with full details of next year’s 105th Tour will be unveiled on February 28.

The Pays de la Loire region hosted the Tour de France on its very first edition. It was via the Vendée that the pack entered the region in 1903 on the Bordeaux-Nantes stage, destined to become a classic on the routes of the era in which the Tour de France emerged.

Since this time, the cities and towns of the Pays de la Loire region have welcomed the Grand Départ nine times, five of which have set out from the Vendée. The Vendée last started the race in 2011 with Australia’s Cadel Evans taking the opening individual time trial honours.

The iconic Mont Saint Michel in Normandy was the backdrop for the start of last year’s race with Dutch city Utrecht and Leeds in Yorkshire hosting the 2015 and 2014 starts.

The Grand Départs of the Tour de France hosted by the Pays de la Loire region:

1957: Nantes
1967: Angers
1972: Angers
1976: Saint-Jean-de-Monts
1988: Pornichet
1993: Puy-du-Fou
1999: Puy-du-Fou
2005: Fromentine
2011: Passage du Gois

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