In just 93 days the 2014 Tour de France will kick off in the English city of Leeds for what is sure to be another thrilling three weeks of racing on the sport’s biggest stage.
Last year’s Tour de France undoubtedly lived up to the ‘100th edition’ hype and exceeded fans’ expectations. A double ascent of Alpe d’Huez. Chris Froome’s unprecedented three stage wins and definitive climb up Mount Ventoux. Nairo Quintana’s podium sweep that included 2nd place in the general classification along with king of the mountains and best young rider jerseys. A heated rivalry between cycling’s fastest men, Marcel Kittel and Mark Cavendish. We were left wanting more after riders circled the Arc de Triomphe at twilight during the final stage in Paris. Then again, doesn’t cycling’s biggest race always create unparalleled excitement?
At Trek Travel, our highlight reel of last years Tour de France looks slightly different. The best part of Alpe d’Huez came after the day’s second ascent, when guests were lifted off the mountain and brought back to their hotel via helicopter. On Mount Ventoux, our guests were provided with first class views of Chris Froome’s solo ride to victory, but a wave from Jens Voigt was the cherry on top. Riding a stage from start to finish with Trek Travel’s Etape trip provided guests with an entirely new appreciation for the strength and courage that professional cyclists must have in order to emerge triumphant after 21 days of suffering. Finally, Paris was highlighted by our annual VIP viewing party at the beautiful and historical Automobile Club of France. With that, we raised our glasses to the maillot jaune and toasted another memorable year.
For 2014, the ASO has crafted yet another unique route and thereby ensured that this year’s race will be better than the last. Setting the stage for a race full of surprises, breakaways, climbs, and sprints is what the race designers do best. This year’s 101st edition of the Tour de France will bring out the history buff in us all, with stages that visit Buckingham Palace and pay tribute to towns and countryside once devastated by World War I. The riders are in for another action-packed race and a strong climber is likely to emerge victorious. Six mountain stages and five summit finishes are sure to get viewers screaming “Allez” as Jens Voigt launches more legendary attacks to make the neo-pros’ legs scream during his last Tour de France. All eyes will be on Stage 5 as it features the unpredictable and punishing cobbles that make Paris-Roubaix so famous. A sole time trail at the end of the race means that no one is safe until Paris. Excitement is guaranteed until the bitter end.
So instead of listening to Phil and Paul tell you what it’s like, join us for the spectacle. Meet the racers that put on the show. Wear a complementary Trek Factory Racing jersey and ride the same bikes as the team. Test your legs on the roads that get devoured by the peloton. The Schleck brothers won’t be the only VIPs at the race, because you’ll be there too. We can’t promise you who will wear yellow, but as an official tour operator and hospitality partner of the Trek Factory Racing team you better believe there will be hundreds of highlights that you’ll miss if you watch it from your couch. Excitement this big simply can’t be experienced second hand. So let us know your thoughts about who will be on the podium, the route, the teams, and the race in general…then join us to watch the magic unfold!