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From Paris to the Vosges — eight stages, one winner — that’s the route for the inaugural 2022 Tour de France Femmes.
Race officials unveiled Thursday the official route for the highly anticipated “return” of a women’s Tour de France.
The details: No time trials, a patch of gravel, and a lumpy course heading east until the big finale in the Vosges.
The opening stage begins in Paris, and pushes east into the Vosges with an uphill finale on the Super Planche des Belles Filles to end the race a week later.
The # avec @!
— Le Tour de France Femmes avec Zwift (@LeTourFemmes) October 14, 2021
Newly designated race director Marion Rousse said it was a “real honor” to be named the first director of the women’s race.
“It is coherent in a sporting sense, and we wanted to start from Paris,” she said of the 1,029km run. “With only eight stages, we couldn’t go down to the Alps or the Pyrenees, the transfers would be too long.
“The stages obviously are shorter for the women than for the men’s races. The men can go 225 kilometers. For the girls, the longest race on our roster is 175km and we even needed special dispensation for that,” she said. “But it’s a course I love. There will be sprint finishes on the first two stages.”
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Set to start July 24, the first edition of Tour de France Femmes comes packed with anticipation and a good dose of hype. Many expect it quickly to become as important to the women’s calendar as it is for the men’s.
Race officials confirmed Thursday the peloton of the first Tour de France Femmes avec Zwift will feature 22 teams of 6 riders.
Officials also said the jerseys will be the same as in the men’s race, so there will be the emblematic yellow jersey for the GC leader, as well as a green points jersey, a polka-dot climber’s jersey, and a white jersey for the best young rider.
Tour de France director Christian Prudhomme said the race is being built to last “for 100 years,” and thanked the many sponsors that stepped up to support the race along with title sponsor Zwift. He called the race a “fourth week of the Tour de France.”
Several riders attended the ceremony, including Urska Zigart, newly crowned world champion Elisa Balsamo, Kasia Niewiadoma, Cecilie Ludwig, Ashleigh Moolman-Pasio, and Evita Muzic, among others.
Stages of the 2022 Tour de France Femmes avec Zwift:
Stage 1: Paris Tour Eiffel -> Champs-Élysées (82km)
Stage 2: Meaux -> Provins (135km)
Stage 3: Reims -> Épernay (133km)
Stage 4: Troyes -> Bar-sur-Aube (126km)
Stage 5: Bar-le-Duc -> Saint-Dié-des-Vosges (175km)
Stage 6: Saint-Dié-des-Vosges -> Rosheim (128km)
Stage 7: Sélestat -> Le Markstein (127km)
Stage 8: Lure -> La Super Planche des Belles Filles (123km)