• The peloton in action during Stage 5 of the 2015 Paris-Nice from Saint-Etienne to Rasteau (Getty) (Getty Images)Source: Getty Images
The route for the 2016 Paris-Nice was revealed by organisers with a new stage finish at La Madone d’Utelle featuring for the 6 to 13 March race.
Tour de France
18 Dec 2015 - 12:47 PM  UPDATED 18 Dec 2015 - 12:56 PM

The 2015 edition of the "Race to the Sun" was won by Australian Richie Porte for Team Sky, and with next year's race a smaller mirror of the Tour de France he will line up a defence with his new team, BMC.

Contenders for Porte's title are Alberto Contador (Tinkoff), Fabio Aru (Astana) and Tour de France champion Chris Froome (Sky).

All stages of the 2016 race will be broadcast live from Sunday 6 March to Sunday 13 March on SBS2 with livestreaming available here at Cycling Central.

For the first major European stage race of 2016 the peloton will ride 1290km over seven stages from Conflans-Saint-Honorine to the finish in Nice.

As with the Tour de France, the contenders will have to demonstrate consistency throughout a demanding week spent battling it out on varying terrain, including a ride over dirt sections on Stage 1, when the peloton finishes in Vendôme.

The prologue at Conflans-Saint-Honorine gets the peloton off to a start before the unpredictable 195km first stage. Next is 214km of road from Contres to Commentry which is likely to finish in a sprint.

Stage 3 changes the game a bit for the peloton with a punchy 165.5km from Cusset ending on the summit of Mont Brouilly with its short but steep inclines. Stage 4 takes the peloton 193.5km from Juliénas to Romans-sur-Isère with another sprint on offer for the fast men.

Proceedings tighten on Stage 5 with a summit of Chalet Reynard included in the 198km from Saint-Paul-Trois-Châteaux to Salon-de-Provence where a breakaway is likely to succeed.

But Stage 6 is when the general classification riders will come out to play and where the race will be decided.

The 177km of distance from Nice is regluarly punctuated with categorised climbs ending with the almost six per cent summit of the 15.3km long La Madone d’Utelle.

The leader after Stage 6 will then head into the 141km final stage which starts and finishes in Nice on the Promenade des Anglais, but not before a passage of the Col d’Eze which comes 15km earlier.

Stages of the 2016 Paris-Nice
PrologueConflans-Sainte-Honorine, 6.1 km (TT)
Stage 1: Condé-sur-Vesgre to Vendôme, 195 km
Stage 2: Contres to Commentry, 214 km
Stage 3: Cusset to Mont Brouilly, 165.5 km
Stage 4: Juliénas to Romans-sur-Isère, 193.5 km
Stage 5: Saint-Paul-Trois-Châteaux to Salon-de-Provence, 198 km
Stage 6: Nice to La Madone d’Utelle, 177 km
Stage 7: Nice, 141 km