Tour de France 2016, stage 21 description, map and profile: Sunday, July 24
When Sunday, July 24
To Paris Champs-Élysées
Impact on GC 1/5
The riders will roll out from Chantilly in holiday mood. There will be jokes, the classification leaders will line up for a photo op and a sip or two of champagne. But once the Eiffel Tower is in sight, the end-of-term jollity ends and the racing begins.
The peloton enters central Paris in a long snaking line. The riders go down the Rue de Rivoli, across the Place de la Concorde and onto the Champs-Elysées. Then they see the Arc de Triomphe, Napoleon’s celebration of victory, and begin to imagine their own.
Just over halfway along the Avenue they cross the finish line, and the laps begin. The Avenue is 70 metres wide, flat to the line then slightly uphill to the Arc. The route goes around the Arc de Triomphe and back down the Champs-Elysées. Then through the Tuileries, around the Louvre, across the Place de la Concorde, and back along the Avenue again. The whole circuit is 6.5 kilometres, and is usually ridden 10 times.
Chris Froome (Sky) survived the last mountain test the previous day to safely retain the yellow jersey, and all but claim his third Tour victory – barring any disaster on the final day.
With Mark Cavendish (Dimension Data) having withdrawn from the race to focus on the Olympics, the bunch sprint is likely to come down to a fight between Marcel Kittel (Etixx-QuickStep), André Greipel (Lotto-Soudal), Bryan Coquard (Direct Energie) and who would rule out green jersey Peter Sagan (Tinkoff) having a pop for another stage win. Also watch out for British sprinter Dan McLay (Fortuneo-Vital Concept) who has battled his way through a debut Tour to reach Paris.