For the 2022 Tour de France, Copenhagen will host its first major cycling event since the 2011 World Championships. That year, Mark Cavendish and Giorgia Bronzini took home the rainbow stripes in the road race. The Giro d’Italia visited Denmark in 2012 but didn’t visit Copenhagen, instead it started in Herning. 2022 is the first time that the Tour de France visits Denmark but it was originally scheduled to be in 2021. Probably unsurprisingly, those plans were derailed by the Covid pandemic. Denmark is very excited to host the Tour de France Grand Depart in 2022. For a city that famously has more bikes than people, it’s a good fit.
Naturally, the fans flocked to the time trial course today with spectators plenty deep from the barriers. The support was all the more impressive given the weather. Heavy rain dictated the start of the race, seeing the odd crash by the riders. 6 hours before the first rider was due down the start ramp, the spectators took up position at their preferred spot. Many were properly prepared with folding chairs and tables.
“I arrived this early because I had to make sure I could see it up close
I’ve always remembered the sound of summer on the terrace, and I’ve also been to see the Tour several times, in the Pyrenees and the Alps
It’s huge, it’s once in a life-time.”Morten Morup, Copenhagen cycling fan
The time trial in the Danish capital took riders past several well-known landmarks. The infamously small Little Mermaid statue, along the sides of Kastellet – one of the best-preserved fortresses in Europe, and over the Dronning Lousies Bro bike path which has 40k cyclists ride over it each day. Yves Lampaert took the victory today, making the most of the improving conditions to beat Wout van Aert by 5 seconds.
Tomorrow’s second stage from Roskilde to Nybord finishes with the peloton going over the Great Belt bridge. There are some concerns about the wind the riders will face and the extreme issue of if a rider manages to fall off the side. The forecast is for crosswinds and its position right at the end of the stage means that racing will very much be on. There is just 3km between the bottom of the bridge and Nyborg.