The capital of Brittany, Rennes, hosted the start of a Tourstage for eleven times. Last occasion was in 1994, when at the end of the day Jan Svorada took the bunch sprint at Futuroscope, a theme park north of Poitiers.
Leaving the student town on the banks of the rivers Ille and Vilaine the pack is on its way for a day out in Brittany. Traditionally this is a cycling mad region producing great champions like Louison Bobet and Bernard Hinault.
Halfway through the stage Col du Mont Bel-Air lays waiting. Not a hurdle to be feared, totalling 1.5 kilometres at 5,7%. Nine kilometres more points are to be gained, this time for the green jersey.
The stage ends on the short and steep Mur de Bretagne, a climb bringing sweet memories to Cadel Evans. The retired Australian bested Contador by a fraction in the 2011 Tour de France. The toughest part of the 2 kilometres climb is at the bottom with a 1 kilometres section rising by 9.5 to 10.1%. Then the climb flattens out and the last 500 metres are a false flat.
He who is in charge at the Mûr receives 10 bonification seconds, number two gets 6 seconds and the rider finishing third is awarded 4 seconds.
Live race report, stage 8, Tour de France 2015
Tour de France 2015 stage 8: Route maps, height profiles, and more
Click on the images to zoom.
Profile intermediate sprint
Details Mûr de Bretagne
Start and finish at Google Maps