The list of Tour de France stage winners at the Puy de Dôme is impressive. Fausto Coppi, Federico Bahamontes, Julio Jimenez, Felice Gimondi, Luis Ocana, Joop Zoetemelk. They all won on the flanks of the volcano with the magical aura. Zoetemelk even won twice.
The name of the last stage winner Johnny Weltz might not ring a bell. The Dane participated four times on the Tour de France and reached the summit of a col on one occassion. Which was enough to be added to above list.
The Puy de Dôme was not included in the Tour since 1988. The 13.3 kilometres climb averages 7.7%. The first 5 kilometres go up at around 7% and after an easygoing section the last 4.3 kilometres are the exact opposite. The gradient never falls below 11% in this part of the climb.
So, most climbing is packed together in the finale, but the route to the foot of the finish climb is far from flat either. The first 25 kilometres are slightly undulating before the Côte du Lac de Vassivière offers a gentle way to stretch the legs – 4.4 kilometres at 4%, not enough for a KOM classification, but a perfect launch pad for breakaway riders. The gradients kick up a notch on the subsequent cimbs – Côte de Felletin (2.1 kilometres at 5.2%), Côte de Pontcharraud (1.8 kilometres at 4.6%), Côte de Pontaumur (3.3 kilometres at 5.3%) – before another non-classified uphill begins 42 kilometres before the finish. The Col de la Nugère is actually a prolonged false flat – 9.2 kilometres at 2.8% – and subsequently the riders plunge down a 15 kilometres descent to the base of the Puy de Dôme.
The first three riders on the line gain time bonuses of 10, 6 and 4 seconds.
Ride the route yourself? Download GPX stage 9 2023 Tour de France.
Another interesting read: results 9th stage 2023 Tour de France.
Tour de France 2023 stage 9: routes, profiles, more
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