The opening stage of the 2022 Tour de France Femmes sees a return to a classic. The first 3 editions of La Course were held on the Champs Élysées and saw 3 different winners – Marianne Vos, Anna van der Breggen and Chloe Hosking. Only one of that trio will be racing in the 2022 Tour de France Femmes, Marianne Vos. Van der Breggen has notably retired and will be in the SD Worx team car as a directeur sportif, whereas Chloe Hosking hasn’t been picked for the Trek Segafredo tour team.
It’s also a bit of a nod back to the 1980s when the original Tour de France Féminin regularly hosted a stage on the Champs Élysées too. Winners back then included: Connie Meijer, Dominique Damiani, Jeannie Longo, Tamara Poliakova, Virginie Lafargue and Monique Knol.
We’re well used to seeing the Champs Élysées as the close of the men’s Tour de France. The street that’s slightly cobbled and surprisingly uphill presents a criterium-like test for the riders. Tight road corners, the short sharp climb up out of the tunnel and the gentle slope all the way up to the Arc de Triomphe will have to be navigated.
One of the ascents to the Arc de Triomphe has been assigned QoM status, which means the polka dots jersey will be on offer from Stage 1 to any rider daring enough to attack for it. A pair of intermediate sprints won’t offset the eventual finishing points for the green jersey but a rider who wins both and finishes 2nd on the stage could still sneak the jersey. The time bonuses on offer will also help set the early GC, so someone like Van Vleuten could try and claim a second or two to establish a small lead.
All in all, this first stage is absolutely one for the sprinters in the peloton.
Tour de France Femmes 2022 Stage 1 Profile
Tour de France Femmes 2022 Stage 1 Favourites
Maria Giulia Confalonieri
Maike van der Duin