Today, the route was unveiled for the six-day Tour de Romandie to be held April 23-28, 2013.
We'll do a more detailed preview as the race approaches, but all you really need to know now is that it will be an innovative route that is also hillier than usual.
763 kilometres and almost 10,000 metres of climb
- A difficult 7.5 km prologue starting at the base of Verbier but heading elsewhere. While not completely uphill, a climber could finish in yellow.
- Stage 3: A fan friendly route that allows viewing of multiple passages from multiple locations.
- Stage 4: A huge Queen stage. According to the official Romandie twitter account: "the hardest stage in a very long-time." 4000 metres of climb. Ouch.
- Stage 6: A final Time Trial along both banks of the Geneva waterfront. Beers on me.
Official Route fly-by:
While critiquing the 2012 Tour de Suisse route, I wrote:
Apparently there is some archaic Swiss law that every stage race in Switzerland must pass UCI headquarters in Aigle …… Look I don't really care if a race passes Aigle or not.
But at least have the decency to then turn right and cycle the Hors Categorie Col de la Croix or even your usual wimpy Col des Mosses.
Well, the Romandie queen stage will pass Aigle - as required by Swiss law - but also climb Col des Mosses once and Col de la Croix twice. Stunning landscape and a fun climb:
Hopefully, the more-difficult-than-usual route won't prevent the usual star-studded field from showing up.