Col d’Izoard, stage 14
The Col d’Izoard features on stage 14, the second of the Tour’s two days in the Alps. The hors categorie climb, one of the most famous in the history of the race, is sandwich between the two category one ascent: the Col du Lautaret and the summit finish to the mountain resort of Risoul.
The Col d’Izoard rises through the beautiful but barren rock formations of the Casse Desert, which has provided the backdrop to some of the most memorable moments in the Tour’s history, with Fausto Coppi, who in 1949 became the first rider to win the Tour de France and Giro d’Italia in the same year, and Louison Bobet, the first rider to win three Tours in succession in 1953, 1954 and 1955, both launching race-defining attacks on the climb.
The summit also marks the high point of the 2014 race at 2,360m and it will be climbed from the south side, with an average gradient of six per cent for 19km (though there are long stretches which are steeper), making it the longest ascent in this year’s race.
The riders will then descend to Guillestre ahead of the final 12.6km, 6.9 per cent climb to Risoul, which is being used for the first time in the Tour de France.
Category: hors categorie
Average gradient: 6 per cent
Maximum gradient: 9.4 per cent