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The Tour de France 2009 start in Monaco officially presented

Added: saturday 15 December 2007 at 21:12:00
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    The Tour de France 2009 start in Monaco officially presentedThe rumours around this started in June on the Internet and A.S.O. confirmed it on November 22nd : the Grand Départ of the Tour de France 2009 will be in the Principality of Monaco. Yesterday, at a dedicated conference at the Grimaldi Forum in Monaco, the Tour organiser has finally presented the first information about this exceptional Grand Départ including especially some information and details about the first and second stages ....

    It is now known that the absence of a prologue (the Tour de France 2008 will directly start with an in-line stage so that the whole of Brittany will be part of this Grand Départ organised by this region!) is not something to stay since the Tour de France 2009 will start with a prologue again.

    Indeed, the first stage, on Saturday 4 July 2009, will be an 15 kilometer individual time trial for which the riders will start one by one from the start stage which will be installed at the traditional start line of the Grand Prix Formula 1.the track of the Tour de France 2009 prologue: Monaco > Monaco
    The track -a circuit in and around Monaco- was really made for time trial specialist who know how to climb, because its quite tortuous and hilly with a 7 kilometer climb from Cap d'Ail to Beausoleil.
    > More information about the prologue

    The second stage will also start from Monaco ... but we don't yet know whether the riders will then directly go into the Alps or not. Stay tuned until the 22nd of October 2008 to know all details about the track and stages of the Tour de France 2009!
    > More information about the second stage

    For Monaco the Tour is not really something unknown since in 2009 it will be the 7th time the Tour will be in the Principality. However, there really is something new, since Monaco has never organised a Grand Départ before. Besides, it's been a while the Tour was in Monaco, since the 6 times where Monaco was a finish city was mostly in the 50s and the 60s with in 1964 and 1955 a finish of a stage which started in Briançon (and a stage start to Hyères in 1964 and to Marseille in 1955), 1953 from Marseille (and a start to Gap), 1952 from Sestrières (and a start to Aix-en-Provence) and 1939 with a stage from Saint-Raphaël and a stage Monaco > Monaco (and a start to Digne-les-Bains).

    Prince Albert, at the conference together with other guests such as Bernard Hinault and Eddy Merckx, of course said he is quite happy to become part of the history of the Tour de France from 2009.

    The details about the prologue

    the profile of the prologue of the Tour de France 2009 : Monaco > MonacoThe stage will start in the Principality on the Boulevard Albert 1er and the track will partly follow the circuit of the Grand Prix Formula 1: after a calm start with 150 plane meters the riders will have to climb for about 7 kilometers ... they'll start with a 500 meter hill in which they will climb 30 meters higher (6%) before they arrive on a short flat part of about 200 meters while passing by the Casino of Monaco.
    Once they left the Formula 1 circuit there will be an even heavier bit of about 400 meters with at the end of it a part at 10% before they arrive at a part with many hidden gradients on the boulevard Princesse Charlotte and the boulevard du Jardin Exotique. Then, the Tour de France will finally get on French territory just after they passed by the Monaco hospital and the riders will arrive on the Moyenne Corniche.
    On this Moyenne Corniche they will get to the highest point of this stage: with a little bit less than 8 kilometers to go they will be at 207 meters high and they will start a long descent. At the end of this descent they will have to pay attention because while they're in Roquebrune-Cap-Martin they will have to make a complete U-turn to go back to Monaco. They will first see a plane part until the Saint-Roman intersection before they continue their descent at kilometer 11,5. At the end of this descent they again have to pay attention to some new bends, this time two hairpins close to the sea (we will probably get to see some nice images there!!), before they continue the race for the last 2,5 plane kilometers on Monaco's territory while riding along the Mediterranean sea and passing by the Grimaldi Forum. The Grimaldi Forum not only was the place where this Grand Départ was presented yesterday but early July 2009 it will also be the place where journalists and the Tour followers (advertising caravan, official partners and organisation) will see each other again 11 months after the end of the Tour de France 2008, because this will be the Permanence d'accueil and the Salle de Presse.

    At kilometer 13,8 the riders will get back on the Formula 1 circuit at the carrefour du Portier just before they go in a 110 meter tunnel to get on the Quai des Etats-Unis which will take them back to the harbour where they'll find the finish line on the route de la Piscine close to the nautic harbour Rainier III.

    The first information about the second stage

    the Tour de France 2009 second stage s track: Monaco > ???
    The second Tour de France 2009 stage will also start in Monaco and will go to a city which is so far still unknown ...

    The virtual start will be in the Monaco harbour and the first kilometers of the track will again follow the Grand Prix Formula 1 circuit while passing by the Casino in Monaco in the other direction as the day before. The riders will then arrive at the Saint-Roman intersection where they'll leave Monaco on the east side. On Roquebrune-Cap-Martin's territory they will take the same hairpin bends as the day before (but still the other way around) and there where during the prologue they had to take the complete U-turn to go back to Monaco, they will probably continue straight through during the second stage heading to Italy. That's also where, at kilometer 4, the real start of this stage will be planned.

    Will they go to Italy or not? We'll know it officially only on Thursday 22 October 2008 when the complete track and all stages of the Tour de France 2009 will officially be presented! But maybe there will be as much rumours a few weeks before as this year for the Tour de France 2008 ...

    by Thomas Vergouwen
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    this article appears in the following categories: Tour de France 2009| Tour de France | share on Facebook | delicious | twitter | Google | technorati


Currently 2 comments!
  1. Prachtig!!! dit artikel, daar wij naar de start van de Tour de France gaan is dit artikel een zééér interessante informatie. Ik ben al een tijdje bezig met het opzoeken van informatie maar dit artikel behoort zeker tot de beste. Proficiat!!!!!

    | Anita Schoutteten | sunday 02 November 2008 at 9:14:30

  2. Bedankt voor de complimenten! :-)
    Voor een volledig overzicht van alle etappes en het parcours van de Tour de France 2009 heb ik dit artikel geschreven.

    We zien elkaar misschien dus in Monaco begin juli ;-)

    | Thomas Vergouwen | sunday 02 November 2008 at 20:18:39

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