2019 La Course by Le Tour de France favours the puncheurs in Pau

Race organisers ASO revealed limited details of their Women’s WorldTour one-day race La Course by Le Tour de France. The race will shift away from the route that boasted a mountaintop finish in Le Grand-Bornand this year to a hilly circuit race in Pau that is more suited to the puncheurs of the peloton.

The UCI announced the 23 events that would make up the 2019 Women’s WorldTour in June, where La Course by Le Tour de France was initially listed as “to be confirmed” on the July 23 date, but it seems likely that date could change given Thursday’s announcement.

The July 23 date does not currently align with the Tour de France stage 13 in Pau. The ASO revealed the men’s Grand Tour route at the Palais des Congrès in Paris on Thursday, with the 27km individual time in Pau scheduled for July 19. On July 23, the Tour de France’s stage 16 takes place in Nimes, some 500km away from Pau. Logistically, however, it seems likely that the ASO would want to hold both races using the same infrastructure on the earlier date.

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Conflicting races on the Women’s WorldTour calendar this year caused some problems for race organisers, such as the Amgen Tour of California Women’s Race and Emakumeen Bira, that overlapped. The UCI told Cyclingnews that it aimed to avoid such conflicts for the 2019 season.

Next summer, the biggest stage race for women – Giro Rosa – will take place from July 5-14. There is room for La Course to move to a July 19 slot without conflicting with the Giro Rosa, and it would then align with stage 13 of the Tour de France in Pau. The July 19 date would, however, overlap with the UCI 2.1-ranked BeNe Ladies Tour.

Cyclingnews has reached out to ASO and the UCI for comment to confirm the date of La Course, but at the time of publication received no reply.

Punchy circuit race in Pau

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