Passing of the peloton during stage six of the 2018 Tour de France between Brest and Mûr-de-Bretagne
The organisers of the Tour de France announced at a press conference at the Regional Council of Brittany in Rennes that the Grand Départ of the 2021 Tour de France will take place in Brest. Finistère’s point will host the start of the race for the 4th time in history, following 1952, 1974 and 2008.
Four all-Brittany stages will be on the programme of the Tour beginning on 26 June, with stages that will likely be influential for the Yellow Jersey contenders.
The Grand Départ initially planned in Copenhagen has been postponed until 2022.
It is said that when the wind blows, no one navigates turbulence better than Bretons. In the past few weeks, they have shown themselves to be up to the challenge and opportunity. They have also demonstrated their loyalty to the Tour de France when the skies darkened over Copenhagen. The congested 2021 summer sporting calendar has forced the Tour’s first visit to Denmark to be postponed until 2022. Instead of heading north, the 108th edition will travel west and its first stage will be held in Brest, which is only second to Paris in terms of hosting the Grand Départ. In previous Tour starts from the tip of Brittany, the way was paved for Fausto Coppi’s success in 1952, Eddy Merckx’s last victory in 1974, and then Carlos Sastre’s in 2008.
After the 32nd visit of the Grande Boucle in Brest, which first appeared on the race programme in 1906, the route will be laid out with the intention of exploring Brittany’s Armor coastal region and its inland Argoat territories. The diversity of the landscapes makes it possible to create selective stages and will thus put the onus on the favourites to live up to their responsibilities straight away. Details will be announced for these four all- Brittany stages during the presentation of the Tour on 29 October at the Palais des Congrès in Paris.
The Tour de France in Brittany: key numbers
– 170 stages held with the start or arrival in the region since 1906
– 33 different cities in Brittany have hosted a stage
– 6 Grands Départs have taken place in Brittany: in Brest (1952-74-2008) and in Rennes (1964), Plumelec (1985) et Saint-Brieuc (1995).
– 153 Breton riders have raced in the Tour between 1905 and 2019 (record participation in 1958: 14)
– 4 Bretons have won the Tour de France: Lucien Petit-Breton (1907-08), Jean Robic (1947), Louison Bobet (1953-54-55) and Bernard Hinault (1978-79-81-82-85)
The Brittany and the Tour de France
More information about the Tour de France on www.letour.fr/en/