– Each July there are two editions of the Tour de France
– Amaury Sport Organisation is organizing both races: the cycling Tour de France and the sailing Tour de France à la Voile
– Although one is cycling, the other sailing, they share a great deal
The Tour de France (TDF) is for cyclists and the Tour de France à la Voile (TFV) is for sailors. Both tours are owned and managed by Amaury Sports Organisation.
Both tours start on the same weekend at different locations on the French coast. The TDF begins in Porto Vecchio this Saturday, June 29th. The TFV kicks off in Dunkirk, on France’s north coast. This 100th edition of the cycling Tour de France will even boast the most stage finishes by the sea in tour history!
The TDF consists of 21 stages spanning 3,404km. The TFV’s 9 offshore legs are 1,200 nautical miles long (2,223km) and will visit 11 ports between Holland and the Mediterranean Sea. The sailors will race on the M34, a 10-meter long one-design keelboat. Their Mont Ventoux is a 463.3km long leg between Deauville and Brest.
The TDF and the TFV will also share one stopover, Marseille. The TDF arrives in the Mediterranean city on July 3rd from Cagnes-sur-Mer while the TFV finishes there on July 28th. The two routes will brush shoulders on July 9th, when the bikes will be on the road from Saint-Gildas-des-Bois to Saint-Malo and the boats will be at sea between Deauville and Brest. The following day, on July 10th, the fleet will sail just off the Normandy coast while the bikes will time-trial from Avranches to the Mont Saint-Michel.
Many TFV sailors are keen cyclists. Franck Cammas and Thomas Coville are two internationally accomplished skippers during this 2013 edition and they both ride their bikes to train for their sailing. In 2010, Cammas even installed a bike on his maxi trimaran, Groupama 3, to assist hoisting the sails during the Route de Rhum. He won the single-handed transatlantic crossing with his unique setup. In 2011 he raced the 109.5km Mondovélo Tour leg from Modane to L’Alpes d’Huez in 4 hours, 10 minutes. His hometown, Aix-en-Provence, is also a starting stage for the TDF on July 4th.
This year is the 100th edition for the TDF and the 36th edition of the TFV, launched in 1978 by Bernard Decré. France is the battle ground and both tours will celebrate Bastille Day on July 14th with a special program: the cyclists will climb the Mont Ventoux while the M34s will race around the gorgeous Ile de Groix.
The winner of the Tour de France will be crowned in Paris on July 21st. On this date the Tour de France à la Voile will still be at sea, racing from Roses to Gruissan. A transition symbol between two races with similar DNA.
Teams TFV 2013:
Iskareen. Skippers : Christiane Dittmers et Sönke Bruhns
BELGIUM / MARTINIQUE
Martinique – BE. Brussels. Skippers : Mathieu Moures et Delphine Wolters
Bretagne Crédit Mutuelle Élite. Skipper : Nicolas Troussel
Courrier Dunkerque 3. Skipper : Daniel Souben
Groupama 34. Skipper : Franck Cammas
Nantes Saint Nazaire/E.Leclerc. Skipper : Corentin Douguet
Normandie. Skipper : Baptiste Choquenet
Sodebo. Skipper : Thomas Coville
Toulon Provence Méditerranée/COYCH. Skipper : Jean-Baptiste Bernaz
Team OmanSail. Skipper : Cédric Pouligny
Bienne Voile – SRS. Skippers : Luzius Peter et François Kunz
Ville de Genève – Carrefour Addictions. Skippers : Elodie-Jane Mettraux et Nicolas Groux