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Nice to host 2020 Tour de France Grand Depart

Joe Robinson
12 Mar 2018

The Grand Boucle will return to the French Riviera for first time since 2013

Nice will host the Grand Depart of the 2020 Tour de France with the race returning to the shores of the French Riviera city for the first time since 2013.

The announcement comes after the climax of an enthralling 2018 Paris-Nice yesterday in which a gutsy, long-range attack from the young Marc Soler (Movistar) helped snatch overall victory from Simon Yates (Mitchelton-Scott) in the undulating streets of Nice.

Announced today by ASO, this will be Nice's second-ever Grand Depart after hosting the first stage of the 1981 Tour. On that occasion, then World Champion Bernard Hinault took the opening day's prologue, a result which helped him negotiate his way to a third of five yellow jerseys 22 stages later in Paris.

This will be the first time the Tour has raced in the streets of the southern French city since 2013. Then it hosted a 25km team time trial on the famous Rue des Anglais which was won by Orica-GreenEDGE. That was also the year in which Chris Froome (Team Sky) took his first Tour de France title.

Speaking of the announcement, race director Christian Prudhomme highlighted the varying terrains of Nice and its surrounding areas as a reason for the race's visit.

'The most recent editions of Paris-Nice have shown us that the variety of landscapes and relief in this region are conducive to suspense, attacking and a thrilling spectacle!' Prudhomme said.

'This is exactly what we want in order to give the Tour de France 2020 a dynamic tone. 

'In Nice, we know that the pack and its support staff will be immersed for almost a week in a friendly atmosphere brimming with enthusiasm for cycling.'

While no details of where the stages will happen have been revealed, optimists will be hoping that Prudhomme's mentioning of 'suspense' and 'attacking' racing means that the Tour start will head to the hills early. 

Although extremely unlikely, a popular choice for an opening stage between fans would be a time trial on the 9.6km Col d'Eze, like that often used in Paris-Nice. 

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