Wednesday marks the highest point of the 2017 Tour de France, as the renowned Col du Galibier must be climbed en route to the final destination of Serre-Chevalier.

The Tour de France, known as “La Grande Boucle,” is the pinnacle of professional cycling and one of the most-watched sports events globally.

With its picturesque routes, challenging mountain stages, and thrilling finishes, it captivates millions. This article dives deep into how to catch the action, recent champions, and some fascinating statistics about the race.

Tour De France TV Schedule 2017

The Tour de France, a 21-stage cycling race spanning over three weeks, is one of the world’s most prestigious and storied sporting events. Every year, it commands the attention of sports enthusiasts and casual viewers alike.

In this article, we delve into the viewership figures, address the elephant in the room (doping), discuss the prize money, and provide insights on how to relive the 2013 edition on French TV.

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Tour De France TV Schedule 2017

Stage 17 is not to be underestimated, despite the fact that Thursday’s stage and the climb over the Cold’ Izoard should cause even more mayhem for the riders. There will likely be significant shifts in the general classification due to the two climbs of more than 2,000 Metres and the long, technical descent to the finish line.

Cycling newsTV has provided a comprehensive map of the course, which you can view below.

TV Info: Eurosport, ITV 4 (UK), NBC Sports (U.S.)

Live Stream: Eurosport website, ITV app, NBC Sports Live service

The Galibier is a legendary stage of the Tour de France due to its length and difficulty; it is a true monster in the Alps and the riders have very little time to catch their breath while climbing it.

This climb at La Grande Boucle has a long and storied history, and was once considered nearly barbaric. The huge mountain was the subject of a BikeRadar article:

Unfortunately, the Col de la Croix de Fer stands between the peloton and the Galibier. With a length of almost 20 kilometres, Croix de Fer is a formidable ascent in its own right; it leads the peloton to the north side of the Galibier, where the challenging Col du Telegraphe prepares them for the summit assault.

On this day, the focus will be on the pure climbers and those vying for the overall standings. The long descent will provide the riders with the best technical skills a chance to make up time, but if a rider loses it on the Galibier, his chances of winning the yellow jersey are slim to none.

Sky have done an excellent job of maintaining a steady pace throughout the tour, but they will be under attack for the next two days. Although Astana and AG2R La Mondiale have chosen to attack Chris Froome and his teammates late in the race, Movistar will have a lot of work to do to catch up, since they will likely be unseated at the foot of the Telegraphe.

The next two stages will be crucial for Fabio Aru and Romain Bardet, who have maintained up a strong pace with Froome thus far. Except in the most extreme of circumstances, Froome is the clear favourite to win the general classification at the time trial in Marseille.

While a rider in the breakaway has a good chance of winning the stage on Wednesday, the main focus will be on the leading pack. It all comes down to these final two Alpine stages, which might determine who wears the leader’s yellow jersey into Paris next Sunday.

Which TV Channel for Tour de France?

The Tour de France is broadcast worldwide, with various networks holding the rights in different regions. In the U.S., NBC Sports traditionally holds the broadcasting rights, while in the UK, it’s often ITV4 and Eurosport.

For those in France, the race is telecasted on France Televisions. Always check local listings, as rights can change and vary from year to year.

How Many People Watch the Tour de France on TV?

The Tour de France boasts an impressive viewership. Estimates suggest that globally, over 3.5 billion people watch the race across its 21 stages, with broadcasts reaching over 190 countries. The live audience on the streets and mountain passes can number in the millions, further showcasing the race’s immense popularity.

A Brief Look at Recent Champions:

  • 2013: Chris Froome, from the UK, racing for Team Sky, clinched his first Tour de France victory.
  • 2015: Froome, marking his second win, once again dominated the race.
  • 2016: Chris Froome made it three, proving his dominance in the event.
  • 2017: The year saw a change with Froome’s teammate, Geraint Thomas from the UK, racing for Team Sky, taking the top spot.

Note: The 2014 winner, Vincenzo Nibali, should also be acknowledged for his standout performance, even if it falls outside the years mentioned.

Which Country Has Won the Most Tour de France?

Historically, France leads the tally with the highest number of Tour de France victories, boasting over 30 wins. However, countries like Belgium, Spain, and the UK have also produced multiple champions, making the competition diverse and unpredictable.

Who is Number 1 in Tour de France?

The “number 1” in the Tour de France traditionally refers to the defending champion or the leader of the previous year’s winning team. They wear the bib number 1 in the subsequent race. However, the overall race leader, recognized during the race, dons the iconic yellow jersey (or “maillot jaune”).

Is Tour de France the Most Watched?

In terms of global viewership, the Tour de France is undoubtedly among the most-watched annual sporting events. The race is broadcast in over 190 countries, with estimates suggesting that over 3.5 billion people tune in across the three-week duration.

While events like the FIFA World Cup may command higher viewership due to their quadrennial nature, the Tour’s annual consistency makes it a staple in the global sports calendar.

The Shadow of Doping in Tour de France:

Doping controversies have intermittently marred the reputation of the Tour de France. Over the years, several riders have been found guilty of using performance-enhancing drugs. While exact figures can vary, prominent cases, including the infamous Lance Armstrong scandal, have put a spotlight on the issue.

The cycling community and event organizers have since taken stringent measures, with rigorous testing protocols to ensure a level playing field and restore the event’s integrity.

What’s at Stake? The Prize Money:

The Tour de France offers a lucrative prize pool, with the total prize money often exceeding 2 million euros. The overall winner, the wearer of the iconic yellow jersey at the finish line on the Champs-Élysées, takes home a prize of around 500,000 euros.

There are also cash prizes for stage winners, holders of other classification jerseys (like the green and polka dot), and various other achievements throughout the race.

Live Broadcasts: Capturing Every Pedal Stroke:

Yes, the Tour de France is broadcast live on TV. Major sports networks across the globe provide live coverage, ensuring fans don’t miss a moment of the action. From thrilling mountain-top finishes to dramatic time trials, every moment is captured in high definition.

Reliving the 2013 Edition:

For those looking to revisit the 2013 edition of the Tour de France with French commentary, several options might be available. French broadcasters like France Télévisions typically hold the rights to the race.

While live broadcasts from previous years are not always readily available, dedicated fans might find DVDs or streaming platforms with archived footage. It’s always a good idea to check platforms like Eurosport Player or even YouTube for past race content.

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The Tour de France is not just a race; it’s a spectacle, a test of human endurance, and a showcase of beautiful landscapes. From the starting “Grand Départ” to the iconic finish on the Champs-Élysées in Paris, it’s a summer event that cycling enthusiasts and casual viewers alike mark on their calendars.

Whether you’re rooting for a favorite rider, a team, or just soaking in the vistas, the Tour de France offers a unique blend of sports and culture.

The Tour de France, with its rich history, thrilling competition, and beautiful backdrops, remains a jewel in the crown of global sports events. Whether you’re revisiting past races or eagerly awaiting the next edition, the Tour promises to deliver moments of sheer excitement, drama, and athletic prowess.