Tour Feminine - Womens Tour de France

From Jon Miles 

The women's Tour de France starts on Sunday 4 August with the opening stage in Holland where it is expected that newly crowned Commonwealth Games road race champion Nicole Cooke will be riding with her Italian team.

The hardest stage race on the women's circuit, this two week race is the 11th to be run and from its small beginnings has grown to be the top stage race in the world for women. 5 past winners of the Tour will be on the starting line but French legend Jeannie Longo will be absent.

There will be two stages in Holland with the road race and team trial at s'Herogenbosch - no stranger to hosting Tour stages - and then it is into Belgium and Brussels for the next and onto France for stage 5. The main action is bound to happen on stage 6 with the climb over the Col de Madeleine and finishing up the Courchevel. Stage 8 tackles the Madeleine as well as he Col du Glandon before finishing at the ski station of Vaujany.

Stage 9 is a split stage with the mornings race going up the Col de Colonbiere with the final stage the run into Paris. It is hoped to give a daily report on the Tour.

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