• The route for the 2022 Tour de France and Tour de France Femmes is set to be announced this week (Getty Images)Source: Getty Images
The cobblestones of Paris-Roubaix, a return to Alpe d’Huez and another penultimate day time-trial could all be on the menu for the 2022 Tour de France.
By
SBS Cycling Central

14 Oct - 1:49 PM 

The route announcement for the first Tour de France Femmes avec Zwift will be shown LIVE and FREE from 20:25 (AEDT) on Thursday, October 14 via SBS On Demand, alongside the men's Tour de France route announcement.

Race organisers will reveal the official route for the 109th Grande Boucle, and the Tour de France Femmes, during a special event in Paris.

The rumour mill has been working in overtime, leading up to the official announcement, as media outlets and keen-eyed fans look for any clues or hints as to where the tour will go.

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One thing for sure is that the 2022 race will not start in France with Copenhagen, Denmark locked in as the site of the Grand Depart as well as stages two and three before an early rest day.

Reports in Velowire predict the race could then have a Classics inspired first week with a trip to the Roubaix Pave and possibly into Belgium.

The Women’s route could feature a visit to Planche des Belles Filles, in the nearby Vosges Mountains with the peloton facing a true summit finish according to newspaper L’Est Republican, who also report the men will race there on stage 7.

Swiss outlet RTS has claimed the men’s race will be headed to Lausanne on stage 8 and then a possible Mountain stage finishing at ski resort Chatel, the following day leading into the second rest.

Various media outlets have linked the race to a high-altitude finish on the Col du Grannon on stage 11.

If true, it would be the first time since 1986 the race has included this arduous 2,400 metre climb.

Also on the cards is a return to the famous Alpe d’Huez, which has been touted to take place on Bastille Day meaning it could be a party atmosphere on the climb’s famous 21 hairpins.

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The Pyrenees is rumoured to be the next stop with a stop in Saint Etienne on stage 13 as well as possible back-to-back summit finishes to start the final week.

La Dépêche du Midi and France Bleu Occitannie have both indicated that the race will feature a showpiece finale at Peyragudes, using the spectacularly steep altiport runway, made famous by James Bond movie Tomorrow Never Dies.

The recent tradition of the penultimate day time trial is set to continue in 2022 with La Depeche du Midi reporting a race against the clock to decide the yellow jersey from Lacapelle-Marival to Rocamadour.

Less is known about the route of Tour de France Femmes but race organiser Christian Prudhomme gave a peek at what he was planning back in July when the event’s 2022 return was announced.

“Women’s cycling has a very high level, but it’s more disparate,” Prudhomme said.

“Men’s cycling has a high level and is more at the same level. For a men’s organiser, that’s tough – you need steeper climbs all the time, harder climbs and so on.

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“To run a women’s race is more simple, you don’t need 50 hyper-steep climbs, you can be more natural about it. Women’s cycling is far less controlled than men’s.

“I can tell you there will be links with the past, with the present, and perhaps the future on the route of the (Women’s) Tour.”

After months of leaks, rumours and reports, all will finally be revealed tonight as Prudhomme officially unveils the 2022 Tour de France and Tour de France Femmes race routes.