Major bicycle race Tour de France to start on Friday
One of the three Grand Tours in cycling, the 2022 Tour de France will kick off Friday with the Stage 1 being held in Copenhagen.
Established in 1903, the Tour de France, one of the major bike races alongside Giro d’Italia and Vuelta a Espana, will be run for the 109th time in history.
In the 2022 Tour de France, there will be 22 teams including 176 riders.
This year’s tour includes 21 stages as the contest will end in Paris’ Champs Elysees on July 24. The 2022 competition will cover a distance of 3,328 kilometers or 2,068 miles.
The first three stages will be hosted by Denmark, but the Tour will visit Belgium in the sixth round and then Switzerland in the eighth and ninth stages.
The 109th edition of the Tour de France will have mountain, hill, cobble and flat surfaces depending on the race locations.
There will be two rest days, and a transfer day after the third stage as well as two individual time trial stages in the 2022 Tour.
Following the third stage, teams will travel from Denmark to France’s Dunkirk near the Belgian border.
The riders will also climb four mountain massifs; the Vosges, the Alps, the Massif Central and the Pyrenees before the final stage on July 24 between Paris La Defense Arena and Champs Elysees, which is 116 kilometers (72 miles).
The Tour de France said on its website that €2.3 million ($2.39 million) will be the total prize money, and it also includes €500,000 prize money to the final winner of the overall individual classification.
The 2020 and 2021 Tour de France champion, Slovenia’s Tadej Pogacar, 23, of UAE Team Emirates and his 32-year-old compatriot Primoz Roglic of Team Jumbo-Visma are expected to compete for the yellow jersey, which is handed to the winner.
Roglic is a three-time Vuelta a Espana winner (2019, 2020 and 2021).
The Vuelta a Espana is one of the Grand Tours that is held in Spain.
4 cyclists win tour 5 times
Four riders won the Tour de France title for five times in history; Jacques Anquetil (France), Eddy Merckx (Belgium), Bernard Hinault (France), Miguel Indurain (Spain) are the record champions.
Anquetil was the 1957, 1961, 1962, 1963 and 1964 Tour de France champion. He died in 1987.
Merckx has claimed it in 1969, 1970, 1971, 1972 and 1974.
Another French national Hinault won the Tour de France in 1978, 1979, 1981, 1982 and 1985.
Indurain was the winner in 1991, 1992, 1993, 1994 and 1995.
Merckx, Hinault and Indurain have already retired.
Israel-Premier Tech’s British cyclist Chris Froome, 37, who is one of the 2022 Tour de France competitors, won this title four times (2013, 2015, 2016 and 2017).
Nairobi native Froome will pedal in the 109th edition of the Tour de France as he aims to be among the record winners of this competition.