Alpe d'Huez

Alpe d'Huez

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Intense Training

Average gradient 7.9%, 13,7 kilometres long, 21 hairpins, elevation 1860 metres: This is L'Alpe d'Huez.

Situated on the border of the French Alps near the town of Bourg d'Oisans, roughly an hour's drive from Grenoble, Alpe d'Huez is the most feared climb in the Tour de France for its abrupt, brutal ascent into the clouds. No other climb has a greater history of suffering, nor exudes the same emotions. It is what the Motirolo is to the Giro d'Italia, or the Angliru to the Vuelta - but with the charm, history and mystique of the Tour de France behind it.

Along with the Puy-de-Dôme and Sestriere, Alpe d'Huez was the first mountain-top finish in the Tour de France.

Its history extends back to 1952, when the Tour's organiser at the time, Jacques Goddet, searched for the most demanding parcours possible in an era when cycling stars were abundant.

Starting in Bourg-d'Oisans, this is the first major individual time-trial, and it may also be one of the most watched stages of the Tour.

This will be the key stage for most of the favourites, racing 13,7 kilometres up the famous 21 switchbacks of L'Alpe d'Huez.



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