Le Tour 2015 – One for Movistar’s Dream Team?


In a race with lots of climbing, what does Movistar’s Dream Team think of the route for the 2015 Tour de France which Chris Froome may well avoid

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Le Tour 2015 – One for Movistar’s Dream Team?

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The Endura sponsored team of Movistar will have for the 2015 Tour de France a strong team of climbers including World Number 1 Alejandro Valverde and the runner up to Chris Froome in 2013, Nairo Quintana. Their manager Eusebio Unzué says “It’s a Tour purely for climbers. I cannot remember a Tour with so few kilometres of time trialing”.


With stages prime for cross winds to explode a nervous peloton, and cobbles ready to catch out the lighter rider nervously bouncing along the roads not suited to the whippets of the peloton, the first week, as it was this year, will be a great spectacle for the viewers. Throw in a handful of gruelling mountain-top finishes and the Tour de France organisers have come up with one of the most exciting courses for 2015.

The pièce de résistance is the demanding penultimate stage finishing on l’Alpe d’Huez with the overall winner being the rider who has the most left in his legs after a nerve-wracking three-week dogfight.

The Tour in 2015 will also feature time bonuses (10, 6 and 4 seconds for the top three stage finishers) for the first time since 2008. This year’s winner Nibali (below) says “One thing is sure this Tour is going to be a huge battle. It’s a tricky first week, very treacherous. The final week is extremely hard, too.”

3788_TDF14_Stg13_Vincenzo NIBALI_(ITA)_1st_Chamrousse_tdwPhSpt

Nibabli: Pic:  PhotoSport International. uk usa asia.

One or two summit finishes can be expected in the Tour but this one has five mountain top ones and more in the Belgium classic stages. The latter are two short, brutal climbs on the Mur de Huy, where the Fleche Wallonne classic ends, and Mur de Bretagne. Then, in the Pyrenees, finishes up at La Pierre St Martin (15.3km at an average gradient of 7.4 percent) and on the Plateau de Beille (15.8km at 7.9 percent) should shake up the GC a fair bit!

Four consecutive gruelling mountain stages are then on the menu in the final week in the Alps. The 17th stage ending in Pra Loup is reminiscent of that in 1975 when France’s Bernard Thevenet beat Belgian great Eddy Merckx. “The descent of the Col d’Allos is very technical, very hard to tackle,” Thevenet explained.

In a surprise statement, 2013 winner Chris Froome told the media he may not ride the 2015 Tour de France. “The team and I will have to give it some careful consideration before we make any commitments to which of the grand tours I will compete in,” the Team Sky rider said on his official website. “Next year’s Tour is going to be about the mountains. There’s very little emphasis on time-trialling which means the race will be decided up in the high mountains.”


“With six mountain-top finishes (including the finish at Cauterets) it is going to be an aggressive and massively demanding race. If I did the Giro, I may also be able to get myself back to top shape for the Vuelta and go there with a realistic chance of aiming for the win.”

So whilst Froome may duck the challenge, there are many including Movistar’s Quintana who will relish the challenge. “In principle, it is a very good for me. I like the fact there are few kilometres of time trialing and that it is very mountainous.

“My only concern may be the stage of pavé It is a day in which, as we saw this year, a rider should be careful because it will not win you the Tour, but you can lose it”.

“I must analyze well the stage because especially the last two sections are quite long. With so many summit finishes, the layout favors me and but I still have to decide my calendar and prepare everything to try to fight for the win. The team time trial does not bother me, because we have already shown what we can do in that event and having the support of the world No. 1 gives me more peace of mind and confidence. Not only Alejandro, but everyone in the great team that we have.”

Stage 11. Quintana injured

Alejandro Valverde, the world number 1 and fourth in the Tour this year says “It’s nice to me and very nice to Nairo Tour also because it has very little time trialing. With eight summit finishes (including the shorter ones in Belgium) it is a very hard Tour”.

“I was surprised there is so little time trial, but also the fact that the stages have fewer miles than usual, they are shorter stages. It’s a journey more in the style of the Vuelta. We’ve already said that I know what my role will be in supporting Nairo. I think we can make a great duo as we were in the last Tour before his fall”.

“I think it’s a very good Tour for the team yet but we have not yet discussed anything about the calendar but I will ride in 2015.”


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