The Tour de France route for 2018 has been unveiled, but it's bad news for British cyclist Chris Froome. This year's race, which starts on July 7, doesn't seem to have conditions that favor the reigning champion.
Chris Froome could face his toughest Tour de France challenge so far in 2018 after organisers named a route and format that could cause problems for the four-time champion.
The race, which starts on the island of Noirmoutier off the Vendee coast on July 7, lacks a long, flat individual time trial where four-time winner Froome often excels.
Six mountain and four steep stages are part of a challenging latter part of the Tour before it ends on the Champs-Elysees in Paris on July 29.
"It's different every year and it's difficult every year," Froome said.
"I like the look of the Alpe d'Huez stage, for me that's the 'Queen' stage on this Tour," he added, referring to the potentially decisive, gruelling mountain climb.
Tour de France 2018 stage list:
Stage 1 - Noirmoutier-en-l'Ile to Fontenay-le-Comte, 189km
Stage 2 - Mouilleron-Saint-Germain to La Roche-sur-Yon, 183km
Stage 3 - Cholet to Cholet, team time trial, 35km
Stage 4 - La Baule to Sarzeau, 192km
Stage 5 - Lorient to Quimper, 203km
Stage 6 - Brest to Mur de Bretagne, 181km
Stage 7 - Fougeres to Chartres, 231km
Stage 8 - Dreux to Amiens, 181km
Stage 9 - Arras to Roubaix, 154km
Rest day in Annecy
Stage 10 - Annecy to Le Grand Bornand, 159km
Stage 11 - Albertville to La Rosiere, 108km
Stage 12 - Bourg-Saint-Maurice to L'Alpe d'Huez, 175km
Stage 13 - Bourg d'Oisans to Valence, 169km
Stage 14 - Saint-Pauol-Trois-Chateaux to Mende, 187km
Stage 15 - Millau to Carcassonne, 181km
Rest day in Carcassonne
Stage 16 - Carcassonne to Bagneres-de-Luchon, 218km
Stage 17 - Bagneres-de-Luchon to Saint-Lary-Soulan, 65km
Stage 18 - Tries-sur-Baise to Pau, 172km
Stage 19 - Lourdes to Laruns, 200km
Stage 20 - Saint-Pee-sur-Nivelle to Espelette, individual time trial, 31km
Stage 21 - Houilles to Paris Champs-Elysées, 115km
mds/mp (AFP, Reuters)