For the first time in history, the Tour de France has arranged staggering lines for each other in the same way F1 racing for the 17th stage.
Section 17 has a length of 65km from Bagneres-de-Luchon to the summit of Col de Portet (Hautes-Pyrenees). This is a very special stage because it has the shortest distance in the modern era of “Le Tour”. Therefore, many people consider this to be an unofficial timing race.
Topographic map of stage 17 Tour de France 2018. Although short (65km) but very challenging, not suitable for sprinters and an opportunity for mountain climbers to score.
The only difference is that the racetrack is not flat with the starting point located at the foot of the climb to the summit of Col de Peyresourde, the first of the 3 peaks that athletes need to conquer. The last peak of Souvenir Henri Desgrange is also the destination with the level HC, the most difficult level.
According to the layout of TDF 2018, the driver holding the yellow shirt will line up first, the next 19 positions will stand behind. The rest will be divided into 4 groups spanning about 70m.
Although Geraint Thomas and Top 20 are in the top 20, stage 17 is still the stage for mountaineering kings like Quintana (Moviestar), who is the first in this stage.
“I appreciate the tournament’s refreshing effort but honestly, I don’t know what to think about what they have arranged for this 17th stage,” said Eusebia Unzue, the Movistar team manager.
Paolo Slongo, coach of the Vincenzo Nibali team, is not too keen on the improvement of BTC: “I don’t think it changes too much but if the strong crab has few teammates around, they have many advantages. Sky team is obviously a strong team and so they benefit. “
British bicycle legend Brad Wiggins commented: “It’s a good start.”
Chris Froome (Sky team), defending champion and also the main driver to do the job reluctantly, supporting teammate Geraint Thomas to protect the yellow shirt in stage 17
Due to finishing in 3rd place, Geraint Thomas not only protected the yellow jersey firmly but also increased the distance with Tom Dumoulin to approximately 2 minutes (1:59 seconds) and teammate Chris Froome 2 minutes 31 seconds in the final ranking.
Historically, TDF 1996 has had a length of only 46km, but at that time, BTC had to shorten the distance of racing because of snow.
Overview of stage 17 Tour de France 2018, the shortest race in the modern era of “Le Tour”.