Tour de France

Tour de France coverage from Cycling Weekly, with up to date race results, rider profiles and news and reports.

Tour de France 2021 podium
(Image credit: Getty Images)

Dates: July 1 to July 24 2022
Stages: 21
Length: 3,328 km
Grand Départ: Copenhagen, Denmark
Finish:
Paris, France
TV coverage (UK):
Eurosport, GCN+, ITV4

Key info: Tour de France 2022 route | Tour de France start list | How to watch the Tour de France | Past winnersJerseys | Key climbs | Who's out

Tour de France 2022 race information

The Tour de France in 2022 will be starting with its Grand Départ in Denmark, with the opening stage beginning in Copenhagen before a further two stages in the Scandinavian country. 

The 2022 race is back in its usual calendar slot in July, after the previous two years have seen the iconic event scheduled at slightly different times of the year. 2020 saw the Tour de France start in late August due to the pandemic, while the 2021 race started in June to accommodate the Tokyo Olympic Games, with the organiser keen on the two events not clashing.

The 109th edition will begin with the traditional time trial too, this time in Copenhagen, after the 2021 event began with a hilly stage in the Brittany region of France. The other two events in Denmark will both feature flat stages, with the riders taking in the landscape of the north-European country. 

After that, the race will head to France for the main bulk of the Tour, taking in the country before finishing on its usual spot along the Champs-Élysées. 

In total, there are two individual time trials, six flat stages, six mountain stages and seven hilly stages, all broken up fairly evenly across the three weeks of racing. 

Tour de France 2021 classifications

Tour de France 2021 final podium

(Image credit: Getty Images)

Much like every year in recent memory, the jerseys and classifications are the yellow jersey for the overall leader, green jersey for the leader in the points standings, polka-dot jersey for the mountain classification, and the white jersey for the best young rider.

Along with the jersey prizes, there is an award for the most combative rider of each stage, with the winner wearing a red number on the following day. This is awarded each day with a Super Combativity award decided by a jury at the end of the race for the most active rider throughout the entire event.

There is also a team classification where the time of the first three riders from each team is put together to create a single time. This is then done in a similar way as the individual general classification.

In addition, there are plenty of bonus seconds up for grabs at the race. There are ten, six and four bonus seconds available at the end of each stage for the first three riders, as well as bonus sprints that are dotted throughout the race on key climbs to try and make the racing more entertaining for spectators.

Tour de France 2021 teams

All 19 of the 2022 WorldTour teams will be riding the Tour de France. 

Last year French Pro Continental teams Arkéa-Samsic, Team TotalEnergies and B&B Hotels-Vital Concept also joined the peloton, while Belgian squad Alpecin-Fenix also featured in the race, after finishing top of the Pro Continental standings in 2020. Expect the same to happen in 2022. 

Tour de France 2021 general classification riders

Reigning champion Tadej Pogačar (UAE Team Emirates) will be on the start line in Copenhagen along with second place in last year's race Jonas Vingegaard (Jumbo-Visma), who will compete the Grand Depart in his home country.

The start-list for the 2022 Tour de France isn't announced yet, but expect all of the big hitters to be involved, as they try to prize the yellow jersey away from Pogačar and stop him from winning for the third year in a row. 

Tour de France 2021 sprinters

Mark Cavendish wins stage four of the 2021 Tour de France

Mark Cavendish wins stage four of the 2021 Tour de France (Image credit: Getty Images)

Expect Mark Cavendish (Deceuninck - Quick-Step) to try and defend his green jersey in 2022, as the Briton attempts to surpass Eddy Merckx's record of 34 stage wins at the Tour de France. Cavendish equalled that in 2021, but will look to go one better to become the Tour's most successful sprinter. 

Peter Sagan's switch to Team TotalEnergies means that it is unlikely he will challenge in the sprints like he did while at Bora-Hansgrohe, mainly because his new team won't feature. 

The 2021 Giro d'Italia's points classification winner's absence therefore opens the field up some more, with Arnaud Démare (Groupama-FDJ), Mads Pedersen (Trek-Segafredo), Sonny Colbrelli (Bahrain Victorious), Alexander Kristoff (UAE Team Emirates) and Iván García (Movistar) all expected to be riding. 

Tour de France 2021 on TV

If you are in the UK then you will be able to watch every stage live from start to finish on Eurosport, ITV and S4C with each offering highlights too. There will be uninterrupted coverage on Eurosport Player online and on the GCN+ app.

Tour de France 2021 route

For more information on the 2022 Tour de France route, head to our route page where you can find all the race profiles and in-depth descriptions.

StageDateStartFinishDistanceTerrain
Stage one1 JulyCopenhagen (Denmark)Copenhagen13km ITT
Stage two2 JulyRoskilde (DenmarkNyborg (Denmark)199kmFlat
Stage three3 JulyVejle (Denmark)Sønderborg (Denmark)182kmFlat
Stage four5 JulyDunkirkCalais 172kmHilly
Stage five6 JulyLilleArenberg155kmHilly
Stage six7 JulyBinche (Belgium)Longwy220kmHilly
Stage seven8 JulyTomblaineLa Planche des Belles Filles176kmMountain
Stage eight9 JulyDoleLausanne (Switzerland)184kmHilly
Stage nine10 JulyAigelChâtel183kmMountain
Stage ten12 JulyMorzineMegève148kmHilly
Stage 1113 JulyAlbertvilleCol du Granon149kmMountain
Stage 1214 JulyBriançon Alpe d'Huez148kmMountain
Stage 1315 JulyBourg-d'OisansSaint-Étienne193kmFlat
Stage 1416 JulySaint-ÉtienneMende195kmHilly
Stage 1517 JulyRodezCarcassonne200kmFlat
Stage 1619 JulyCarcassonneFoix179kmHilly
Stage 1720 JulySaint-Gaudens Peyragudes130kmMountain
Stage 1821 JulyLourdesHautacam143kmMountain
Stage 1922 JulyCastelnau-Magnoac Cahors189kmFlat
Stage 2023 July Lacapelle-Marival Rocamadour40kmITT
Stage 2124 JulyParis La Défense Arena Paris (Champs-Élysées)112kmFlat

Tour de France past winners in the last 10 years

2010: Andy Schleck (Lux)
2011: Cadel Evans (Aus)
2012: Bradley Wiggins (GBr)
2013: Chris Froome (GBr)
2014: Vincenzo Nibali (Ita)
2015: Chris Froome (GBr)
2016: Chris Froome (GBr)
2017: Chris Froome (GBr)
2018: Geraint Thomas (GBr)
2019: Egan Bernal (Col)
2020: Tadej Pogačar (Slo)
2021: Tadej Pogačar (Slo) 

How does the Tour de France work?

The Tour de France is one of three races that are three weeks long, known as the Grand Tours, alongside the Giro d'Italia and the Vuelta a España. The Tour is the best known and arguably the most prestigious.

It is the second of the three races in the calendar with the Giro taking place in May, the Tour usually in July, and the Vuelta in August and September.

The Tour, like all Grand Tours, takes on varying terrain with flat days for sprinters, hilly days for punchers and mountains for the climbers and GC riders, along with time trials, so that a winner of the race has to be able to perform on all types of road.

The main prize in the race, known as the general classification, is based on time with the overall leader wearing the yellow jersey. The race leader and eventual winner is the rider who has the lowest accumulated time over the 21 days of racing. Riders can win the Tour de France without winning a stage, as Chris Froome did in 2017. Time bonuses of 10, six, and four seconds are given to stage winners though, creating incentive for those general classification riders to chase individual victories and lower their overall time.

In 2020 it took race winner Tadej Pogačar 87-20-05 to complete the race with the second-place rider overall 59 seconds slower. That continues all the way down to the last place rider, which was Roger Kluge (Lotto-Soudal) who finished over six hours behind at a time of 6-07-02.

The white best young rider's jersey is worked out in the same way but only riders under the age of 26 are eligible for the jersey.

The polka-dot mountains jersey and the green points jersey are based on a points system and not time. The only reason time would come into account would be if riders are tied on points, then it would go to who is the best placed in the general classification.

The team classification is based on the general classification times of the first three riders of a team on each stage. The time of those three riders is added up and put onto their team's time, creating a GC list much like in the individual classifications. The leading team get to wear yellow numbers and helmets on each stage.

The final classification available is the combativity prize. This is decided by a race jury or, in more recent years, Twitter. This takes place just before the end of each stage and often goes to a rider from the breakaway who has put in a daring performance or attempted to liven up the stage by attacking. The winner of the combativity award gets to wear a special red race number on the following day's stage.

There is a final prize added to this with the Super Combativity prize being awarded on the podium in Paris. This is decided in a similar fashion to pick out the most aggressive, entertaining, and daring rider of the whole three weeks. Again, usually going to a rider who has featured regularly in the breakaway.

Stage winners do not wear anything special the day after apart from getting a small yellow jersey to stick on their number on their bike, this can be replaced if they win multiple stages.

Teams used to come to the race with nine riders but the UCI, cycling's governing body, decided that nine riders from each team was too dangerous and dropped it to eight, however more teams are riding now riding.

How long is the Tour de France?

The Tour de France takes place over 23 days with 21 of those days race days. The riders get two days of resting; they usually fall on the second and third Monday of the race.

This year's race is 3,328km long, which is 2,068 miles, around the same distance from Washington DC to Las Vegas, or Helsinki to Lisbon. 

Road stages can range from anything around 100km to something approaching 250km, sometimes more. This year the shortest road stage is the last stage around the streets of Paris at 108.4km with the longest being 249.1km on stage seven, Vierzon to Le Creusot.

Road stages often take around four to five hours with the longer days sometimes nudging over seven hours.

Time trials are always much shorter. Team time trials have long since gone out of fashion in the world of road racing so individual time trials are the main focus these days. 

In 2021 the Tour has two individual time trials for the riders to tackle, one on stage five which is 27.2km long from Changé to Laval, and the second on stage 20 over 30.8km from Libourne to Saint-Emilion.

It is a whole day of coverage for the spectators, but for a rider it is not yet known how long it will take to ride these distances, but it should be around 30-40 minutes.

When does the Tour de France start?

The 2022 Tour de France will start on July 1 in Copenhagen, Denmark, with a 13km individual time trial. There will be three stages overall in the Scandinavian country, before heading to Dunkirk for the main part of the Tour, finishing in Paris three weeks later.

The race returns to its usual slot in the calendar in July, after 2020 featured a delayed event while 2021 was two weeks earlier than usual due to the road cycling, track cycling and mountain biking events in the Olympic Games. 

The Tour runs from July 1-24, covering 21 stages. 

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