A sporting event that draws big crowds year after year, Tour de France brings together cycling professionals and amateurs from around the world. What began in the year 1903 as a cycling event is a don’t-miss-for-anything extravaganza today. The year 2015 will see the 102nd edition of this grand event that kicked off on 4th July in Utrecht, Netherlands.
History of Tour de France
Géo Lefèvre, an advertising professional working for the French magazine L’Auto first thought of this kind of an event. The first race on 1st July 1903 had only 60 cyclists. The route distance was 471 km and was set over six stages. Maurice Garin reached the finish line first, followed by only 20 other cyclists.
With the exception of the years that saw the two world wars, Tour de France has been held every year. With more stages added and rules changed over the years, this event promises more excitement than anything else at this time of the year.
Tour de France 2015
Tour de France 2015 will take place from the 4th of July to the 26th of July. There will be 21 stages and a total distance of 3358.3 kilometers will be covered during the entire race. Participants will have to cycle through 3 countries, 26 French departments, 37 stage cities and about 624 municipalities.
The very first Tour de France was for a distance of just 471 km. The 2015 Tour de France will see a distance of 3358 km covered by 22 teams with a maximum of 198 riders.
Participants will contest four main individual classifications and will also be a part of team competition. The general classification, points classification, mountains classification and the young rider classification give all participants equal chances to garner as many points as possible. The team classification calculates the finishing times of the best three cyclists in every team at every stage.
The cyclist who has the least accumulated time gets the yellow jersey while the cyclist who is the best in a stage finish bags the green jersey.
For the mountain stages, the rider with the fastest time for ascent gets the polka dot jersey while the white jersey is for the rider with most points in the young rider classification. A jury also selects the most combative rider who wears red numbers on his jersey for winning.