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Women’s cycling needs its own Tour de France – not more vague promises

The route for next year’s Tour de France was revealed this week. Yet again women’s cycling was treated like a poor relation

By Suze Clemitson for 100 Tales 100 Tours of the Sport Network

Is it time that women’s cycling got the message? As Christian Prudhomme announced “the highest Tour in history”, there was scant coverage of La Course and no mention of a women’s Tour de France.

Gone is the mountain-top finish of last year’s race to Le Grand-Bornand or the quirky two-day pursuit format of the 2017 race. The race next year – a one-day, 120km event – will not show off women’s cycling in the spectacular theatre of the Champs-Élysées either, preferring a circuit race on the hilly route of the men’s time-trial course around Pau. Designed to test the legs of the puncheurs – those riders who can launch a stinging attack and punch time into the peloton over rolling terrain – the route will showcase a different type of rider on the stinging slopes of the Côte d’Esquillot, a potential springboard to overall race victory.

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