The full assent of the Mont Ventoux returns to the Tour de France route for the first time since 2013, when Chris Froome climbed to victory ahead of Nairo Quintana and Mikel Nieve. The climb was scheduled to be included three years later, but wind barrelling across the upper part – or, bald part – of the mountain saw the race being shortened to a Chalet Reynard finish. Thomas De Gendt took the spoils.
The 2021 Tour de France features a double ascent of the Ventoux in the last 100 kilometres. Following a warm-up climb on the Col de la Liguière the riders enter the Ventoux in Sault. The ascent is 24.3 kilometres long on this side. The section until Chalet Reynard barely touches 6% before the last 6 kilometres – the ‘bald part’ of the mountain – go up at almost 8%. The last 2 kilometres even at 9.5%.
The riders plunge down an extremely fast descent into Malaucène to enter the climb again after an undulating section of 12.5 kilometres around the base of the Ventoux. The second ascent begins in Bédoin and is shorter, but much steeper than the first. The average gradient sits close to 9% for 15.7 kilometres. And again, the last 2 kilometres rise at 9.5%.
Reaching the summit, the pilots enter the rapid descent into Malaucène once again. The 22 kilometres to the line all fly downhill.
With so may riders out of GC contention, the breakaway is likely to be successful. Unless Pogacar is motivated to go all out with stage honours and bonification seconds at stake.
Favourites stage 11 Tour de France 2021
*** Julian Alaphilippe, Tadej Pogacar, Jakob Fuglsang, Wout Poels
** Sergio Higuita, Vincenzo Nibali, Pello Bilbao, Nairo Quintana, Ion Izagirre
* Wilco Kelderman, Richard Carapaz, Rigoberto Uran, Enric Mas, Jonas Vingegaard
Another interesting read: route 11th stage 2021 Tour de France.
Tour de France 2021 stage 11: profiles & finish
Click on the images to zoom