In the Tour de France 2018, riders will have to cover all different types of terrain, inclines and more. Whilst ever year’s route is always slightly different, there are always 21 stages, and the riders have just under three weeks to compete the challenge.
In contrast to recent years, the 2018 Tour de France route takes place almost entirely within France (with a small section in Spain), and it will be a total of 2,069 miles long. Within the 21 stages, there will be 9 flat stages, including the prestigious Grand Depart and the sprint finish on the Champs-Élysées in Paris.
The flat stages of the Tour de France are notoriously some of the most competitive as it is in these stages where the fastest riders can come into their own.
This means they are some of the most exciting too, as there will be a huge push from the sprinters to break away from the peloton and achieve the quickest time.
Tour de France: Are the Flat Stages Important?
Many Tour de France pundits and spectators would argue that no, the flat stages are not important within the overall race. This is because it is in these stages where the GC contenders will take a step back and allow the sprinters to do what they do best.
Within the Tour de France 2018, the GC contenders are the ones aiming for the title of overall winner. In the flat stages, the GC contenders will be looking to stay out of the way of any crashes and may hang back within the safety of the peloton. This is why the flat stages rarely have an impact on the overall standings.
That being said, the flat stages offer an opportunity for the sprinters to show off and win as many individual stage victories as they can, as well as giving them a chance to wear the green jersey.
Tour de France 2018: The 9 Flat Stages
In the table below, we’ve listed all of the nine flat stages of the Tour de France 2018 route, alongside when and where they’ll take place, and the distance covered in each.
|Stage of Race||Start Date||Location||Distance (Miles)|
|1||7th July||Noirmoutier-en-l'Île to Fontenay-le-Comte||117|
|2||8th July||Mouilleron-Saint-Germain to La Roche-sur-Yon||114|
|4||10th Juy||La Baule to Sarzeau||119|
|7||13th July||Fougères to Chartres||144|
|8||14th July||Dreux to Amiens||112|
|9||15th July||Arras to Roubaix||96|
|13||20th July||Le Bourg-d’Oisans to Valence||105|
|18||26th July||Trie-sur-Baïse to Pau||107|
|21||29th July||Houilles to Paris (Champs-Élysées)||71|
Tour de France 2018 Flat Stages: Odds on Sprinters and Points Classification
As we mentioned earlier, the flat stages will not have much impact on the overall winner of the Tour de France 2018. However, they are important to the points classification contenders.
The points classification is a secondary competition in the Tour de France race, specifically for the sprinters. Winners of the points classification will wear the green jersey (maillot vert) and many UK bookmakers are already offering odds on who will be crowned winner in the 2018 race.
Peter Sagan, who rides for Bora-Hansgrohe, is the current favourite to win the points classification prize, with his odds currently standing at around 1/2.
Just behind him is Fernando Gaviria, who rides for Quick-Step Floors, with odds of 7/2 and the third favourite to win is Dylan Groenewegen, who rides for LottoNL-Jumbo and who’s current odds stand at around 8/1.