It takes the riders 193 kilometres to get from Rheinfelden to the Swiss Champagne. The only climb is in the beginning of tha race when Breithöhe, at an elevation of 845 metres, is crested with around 40 kilometres done. The rest of the race is on rolling roads between 400 and 460 metres above sea level.
The stage closes with a local circuit at 19.7 kilometres. After the first passage on the line a false flat takes the riders to 597 metres. After this ‘peak’ it’s 10.5 kilometres to go to the arrival.
The final stretch is remarkable, to say the least. With 150 metres remaining a sharp turn marks the finale.
Overlooking Lake Neuchâtel, Champagne is a tiny village with a long history. As long ago as 885 it was first mentioned. As Campania.
Interestingly, vintners have been growing grapes in Champagne for centuries. The name was always obvious, but as of 2005 the villagers are not allowed to use Champagne anymore. A certain region in neighbouring France did claim exclusive rights to the name. As a consequence wine makers in the Swiss Champagne, who sold about 110,000 bottles of their light, non sparkling and red wine in their best years, have seen sales go down with 70 percent. Now they seek refuge in corruptions as C-ampagne and Ciiampagne. Maybe the arrival of the Tour de Suisse will bring something of a recrudescence…
Last year, stage 4 in the Tour de Suisse was a hilly stage with a slightly uphill arrival, that was won by Michael Matthews.
At the line, time bonuses at 10, 6 and 4 seconds lay waiting, while intermediate sprints come with 3, 2 and 1 seconds each.
Race results/race report stage 4, 2016 Tour de Suisse.
Tour de Suisse 2016 stage 4: Route maps, height profiles, etc.
Click on the images to zoom