Nice (dpa) – Accompanied by major corona concerns, the 107th Tour de France starts in Nice next Saturday. After the number of infections in France had risen sharply, measures were tightened again.
Spectators are allowed on the track, but are strictly limited. Sportingly, the sprinters could come into play on the first stage of 156 kilometers.
ROUTE: The two mountains in the third category are used more to ensure that the mountain jersey can also be awarded on Saturday. The last 50 kilometers are flat, the destination is right on the beach on the famous Promenade des Anglais. An ideal finish for the sprinters.
FAVORITES: The sprinter teams are not allowed to remove the first yellow jersey. The Australian Caleb Ewan in particular, who won three stages last year, should become the big favorite with the support of his German helpers John Degenkolb and Roger Kluge. But also the Italian Elia Viviani, the Irish Sam Bennett and perhaps also ex-world champion Peter Sagan of the German Bora-hansgrohe team are also possible for the opening victory.
DEUTSCHE: In previous years the finish would have been perfect for André Greipel. The 38-year-old, who has embarked on his tenth tour, has lost a bit of his final speed. The twelfth Tour stage win of his career is therefore unlikely.
SPECTATORS: After the region on the Côte d’Azur was declared a “Red Zone” due to the increasing number of corona infections, the measures for spectators were tightened up again. In the start and finish area, only a few dozen spectators are planned instead of the initially allowed 5000 spectators. The police also wants to avoid large crowds in other ways. Access to the climbs should only be allowed by bicycle or on foot.