Tour de Suisse 2017: The Route
The 2017 Tour de Suisse started Saturday 10 June to close on Sunday 18 June. The route of the nine-day stage race is marked by two time trials and three mountain stages with the 7th stage to the Tiefenbachferner the apogee. The 14.2 kilometres climb brings a grueling 9.5% to the table – and yes, that’s the average gradient. Check out the full route of the 81st Tour de Suisse.
The Tour de Suisse starts with two stages in Cham, birth place of Trek-rider Grégory Rast. Stage 1 is a 6 kilometres time trial, while the 2nd stage is a hilly criterium that should fancy fast men. Stage 3 travels from Menziken to Bern and is tailor made for sprinters too, yet they have to be prepared for a 900 metres climb in the last 1.5 kilometres.
Stage 4 brings the first summit finish in Villars-sur-Ollon. Chris Froome climbed to victory on the 11.1 kilometres ascent at 7.6% in last year’s Tour de Romandie.
Travelling from Bex to Cevio, the 5th stage takes in the mighty Simplon Pass as an intermediate climb. The last 50 kilometres are in descent or flat.
The route of the 6th stage crosses the San Bernardino Pass and the Albula Pass, both well over 2,000 metres. The arrival is in La Punt after a drop from the Albula Pass. The finale follows the same script as in 2013, when Rui Costa bested his fellow-escapees Bauke Mollema and Tejay van Garderen on the line.
The Queen Stage travels from Zernez to Sölden, Austria. Or, to be more accurate, to the Tiefenbachbachferner, a glacier at an elevation of 2,780 metres. To arrive at that altitude the riders have to climb 14.2 kilometres at an average grade of 9.5%. The finish lies 3 kilometres after the Rettenbachferner, where the Tour de Suisse finished in 2015 (Thibaut Pinot win) and 2016 (Tejay van Garderen).
A weekend of stages in Schaffhausen is to bring the curtain down on the 2017 Tour de Suisse. Stage 8 is a hilly criterium before the last stage is an ITT of 28.6 kilometres in which a 3.7 kilometres climb at 5% is crested with 5.6 kilometres to go.
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