The organisers of the Tour de France have announced the race will not end on the Champs-Élysées in 2024 but instead in Nice with a final day time trial.
A stage 21 sprint finish on the Champs-Élysées has become modern tradition, often referred to as the unofficial sprinters’ world championships, and a career bucket list item for any of the fast men in the peloton.
However, the Paris Olympics that summer will see the French capital struggle to contain two major sporting events at once, meaning that the race will instead finish in Nice in the south of the country.
Only during the first two editions of the French Grand Tour in 1903 and 1904 did the race not finish in Paris, and since 1975 its culmination has been hosted by the Champs-Élysées. But in two year’s time, the famous Promenade des Anglais will host the last metres of the year’s Tour. Another notable quirk of the 2024 edition will be a first-ever Grand Départ from Italy, with the riders set to roll out from Florence ahead of three weeks of racing.
A report in Le Parisien suggests Nice’s flexibility with accommodating the delayed 2020 Tour de France Grand Départ at a time in late August after the height of the lucrative tourism season and under strict Covid-19 measures has been rewarded with the awarding of the 2024 Tour finale.
“After 110 editions concluded at the Parc des Princes, the Cipale velodrome in the Bois de Vincennes or on the Avenue des Champs-Elysées, the Tour de France will finish far from Paris for the first time in 2024, with stage 21 in Nice on 21 July,” the Tour de France’s announcement read.
“For this exceptional final stage along the Mediterranean coast, a time trial will decide the title among the contenders. Thirty-five years after Greg LeMond stripped Laurent Fignon of the Yellow Jersey by eight seconds. The stage the day before will be run on the suspenseful roads of the Nice backcountry.”