August 1, 2021

Bald Mountain, resilience and space station

  • Today’s stage: Sorgues-Malaucène, 199 kilometers

Just recovered from a grueling, wet and icy alpine weekend, the peloton – very thin – returned to the high mountains on Wednesday July 7th. On the menu, a 100% Vaucluse race and five difficulties, including the double ascent of Mont Ventoux, a climbers’ paradise.

Read also Tour de France 2021: Ben O’Connor wins in Tignes after a daunting ninth stage

The runners will see the famous summit of Mont Chauve twice, a first in the history of the Grande Boucle. After passing through the Col de la Liguière (1re category), the peloton will attack the “giant of Provence” by its less difficult side, from Sault, longer but more rolling (22.1 km at 5%). The second ascent, the summit of which is placed 20 kilometers from the finish, will take place via the traditional and terrible slope of Bédoin (15.7 km at 8.8%).

Another special feature is that the finish will not be at the top of Mont Ventoux, the scene of legendary stage victories, but at the bottom of the descent to Malaucène. An atypical final which could encourage the riders to attack earlier in order to widen the gap in the general classification at the dawn of the Pyrenees.

Route of the eleventh stage of the Tour de France 2021.
  • The rider to watch: Julian Alaphilippe

The French Julian Alaphilippe of the Deceuninck-Quick Step team crosses the finish line at the end of the 7th stage of the 108th edition of the Tour de France, on July 2.

If the world champion repeats over and over that he is not aiming for the yellow jersey, the French have once again dreamed of him as successor to Bernard Hinault, quadruple and last French winner of the Tour de France (1985). For seven days, Julian Alaphilippe will have maintained, in spite of himself, the hope of seeing (finally) a Frenchman in yellow in Paris. Well classified overall after its inaugural victory in Landernau (Finistère) during the first stage of the Tour, the iridescent jersey stuck in the Alps.

Relive the live: Tour de France 2021: Julian Alaphilippe wins the first stage and takes the yellow jersey

Chilled by the cold throughout the ninth stage in Tignes, Saturday July 3, the 29-year-old rider conceded more than thirty minutes to the Slovenian Tadej Pogacar, title holder, going so far as to get off his bike to put on an outfit. dry and put on gloves.

Read also Tour de France 2021: in Valence, Mark Cavendish raises his arms for the third time

Distanced by the contenders for the final victory, the Berrichon turns into a stage hunter. After a day of rest, he played the model teammate on Tuesday, riding to the front of the field to allow Mark Cavendish to sprint in a wheelchair at the finish of stage ten in Valencia. Today, the rider of the Deceuninck-Quick Step will be free to move around and can envisage an eighth stage victory on the Grande Boucle, which is moreover in a legendary location in the race.

On Tuesday July 6, eleven survivors of terrorist attacks climbed Mont Ventoux upstream of the peloton. On the occasion of the fifth anniversary of the Paris and Saint-Denis attacks and the twentieth of the September 11 attacks in New York, the organization of the Tour joined forces with the French Association of Victims of Terrorism (AFVT) and its European counterpart, V-Europe, for “Show the way to resilience and appeal to the generosity of the public”, explained the president of the AFVT, Guillaume Denoix de Saint Marc. On Wednesday, the eleventh stage of the Tour will be dedicated to victims of terrorism and the peloton will wear the colors of the association in order to raise funds.

“If the challengers attack early, anything is possible”

On the eve of the long-awaited stage of Mont Ventoux, the yellow jersey, Tadej Pogacar (UAE Team Emirates), is wary of his competitors. The Colombian Rigoberto Uran (EF Education-Nippo) and the Ecuadorian Richard Carapaz (Ineos Grenadiers) could want to spring from the steep slopes of the Vaucluse to make up for their delay in the general classification. Respectively third and fifth, the underdogs are more than five minutes behind the Slovenian leader.

  • The photo: the Tour takes height

We knew Thomas Pesquet was fond of rugby, donning a Stade Toulouse jersey at the slightest opportunity to support the club of the Pink City, we discovered him a lover of two-wheelers. On Tuesday, the astronaut tweeted from the International Space Station a photo containing almost the entire tenth stage of the Tour de France.

Burgundy to the north, lakes Geneva and Annecy halfway up, Valence to the south, almost everything is there: « Je crains that Albertville [où s’est tenu le départ] stay timidly outside the frame », recognized the Frenchman with a touch of irony. He then gave his moral support to the cyclists: “I’ll be thinking of runners while doing my bike exercises. “

Our selection of articles on the 2021 Tour de France