Announced at a presentation inside Paris's Palais des Congrès on Thursday, the official route for the race’s second edition will be concentrated in the south and southwest of France, starting in Clermont-Ferrand before heading down into the Pyrenees, ending in Pau.
The race will start with a punchy lap of the Gothic city, where the first yellow jersey will be awarded. Clermont-Ferrand will then host the départ on stage two, when the riders will take on a rolling course en route to Mauriac with over 2,500m of climbing.
Day three will see the peloton ride through the Dordogne, before a 177km stage - the longest in women’s WorldTour history - will take place between Cahors and Rodez. The riders will face some challenging climbs on stage four, with a sequence of tough côtes to tackle in the finale.
On stage five, the sprinters will have their day in Albi. A lumpy stage into Blagnac will follow, before the race shifts closer to the Spanish border and into the Pyrenees.
The only summit finish comes on stage seven, the penultimate day, when the iconic Col du Tourmalet will become the first hors catégorie climb ever scaled in the Tour de France Femmes. The peloton will climb the Col d’Aspin first, before taking on the eastern ascent of the 17km-long Pyrenean giant from Sainte-Marie-de-Campan.
Standing at 2,115m altitude, the Tourmalet will mark the race’s highest ascent to date, trumping last year’s 1,193m Col du Platzerwasel by almost 1,000m.
Tour de France organisers have long had an affinity with the the Tourmalet, which was first introduced into the men’s race in 1910, and has featured a total of 87 times, more than any other mountain pass. The climb also starred in the 2000 edition of the Grande Boucle Féminine Internationale, a historic women’s Tour de France equivalent.
The 2023 Tour de France Femmes will conclude with its first individual time trial, a 22km lap of Pau. Dutchwoman Marianne Vos came out on top last time the women’s peloton visited the city, claiming her second victory in La Course in 2019.
The eight-stage race will run from 23 July to 30 July 2023.
|Stage one, 23 July 2023||Clermont-Ferrand to Clermont Ferrand||124km|
|Stage two, 24 July 2023||Clermont-Ferrand to Mauriac||148km|
|Stage three, 25 July 2023||Collonges-La-Rouge to Montignac-Lascaux||147km|
|Stage four, 26 July 2023||Cahors to Rodez||177km|
|Stage five, 27 July 2023||Onet-Le-Château to Albi||126km|
|Stage six, 28 July 2023||Albi to Blagnac||122km|
|Stage seven, 29 July 2023||Lannemezan to Tourmalet Bagnères-De-Bigorre||90km|
|Stage eight, 30 July 2023||Pau to Pau||22km (ITT)|
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