The 2019 version of la route via the tour de France turns the spotlight on the puncheurs, the explosive all-rounders who make the maximum of each attacking possibility. Riders including a resurgent Marianne Vos, or the girls’s world tour chief Annemiek van Vleuten, might be looking to move the finishing line in Pau before their competitors from the 15 ladies’s international excursion teams who are slated to appear.
This year’s one-day race movements faraway from the pancake-flat cobbles of the primary 3 variations and the high altitude theatrics of last year’s duel inside the Alps to a more dynamic circuit course with the climb of the 307m Côte d’Esquillot likely to show decisive. L. A. Direction will comply with the route of the most effective time trial within the 2019 men’s excursion de France, riding the identical testing circuit thru the rolling hills round Pau. Shifting date to align with the men’s race on 19 July, la direction narrowly avoids an overlap with the Giro Rosa, the most important level race within the girls’s cycling calendar.
Question marks stay over the dedication of the Amaury sport organization (ASO), the organiser of l. A. Direction and the excursion de France, to expanding the only-day race right into a girls’s grand excursion. To Kathryn Bertine of los angeles tour Entier, the strain group that correctly leveraged international activism to paintings with ASO and create la path, the sixth edition is “a victory and a unhappiness due to the fact ASO has not stored its promise to Le excursion Entier that they could develop the times of the ladies’s race incrementally over the years”.
La direction continues to trace the parcours of simply one of the 21 degrees of the men’s race, final 20 stages quick of the unique task to broaden a possible ladies’s tour de France. Bertine believes that la path still has a purpose: “It reminds us that change is simply possible, but we need to preserve a watchful eye on victory and make certain we by no means accept breadcrumbs of progress.”
But, the previous expert Iris Slappendel is less constructive. “At the beginning it was quite thrilling for the girls’s peloton because it regarded to be the start of something larger,” says the Dutchwoman, who rode the first three versions in Paris and is now the executive director of the Cyclists Alliance. “i’m able to say an awful lot of that pleasure is long gone and we simply all hope that ASO makes a great course so we are able to make a excellent race this is shown international.”
This 12 months’s course is designed to show off a effective all-rounder, and the explosive puncheurs will savor the 5 ascents of the Esquillot climb for the duration of the 120km race. Located 16km into every of the five circuits and with gradients up to 7%, it’s far the ideal springboard for a race-triumphing pass. ASO say this 12 months’s path is designed to stability the 5 previous variations with the aid of showcasing the aggressive riders who excel on difficult terrain.
That makes Anna van der Breggen a warm favorite to avenge her defeat through Van Vleuten in closing yr’s dramatic race, whilst she turned into stuck on the road in a mystery. The reigning avenue international champion is using a surely wonderful season to date, following up a record-equalling fifth win at Flèche Wallonne with an equally surprising ride at the Amgen tour of California, taking the general win and the factors jersey.
With groups which includes Boels-Dolmans, Bigla and Mitchelton-Scott at the start line both of 2018’s protagonists ought to be in Pau. They’ll line up along Britain’s Lizzie Deignan, who may be looking to sooner or later add los angeles route to her palmarès along with her new group, Trek-Segafredo. Different riders who will revel in this Classics-style parcours include the Italian champion Marta Bastianelli, the winner of the ladies’s Ronde van Vlaanderen, and Poland’s Katarzyna Niewiadoma, who at 24 is one of the younger prospects in the sport and the winner of the equally hilly Amstel Gold Race.
From the best triumph of Vos in 2014 to ultimate year’s nail-biter, when given the possibility on the largest degree women’s cycling can be assured to carry the panache.