PARIS: The 2021 Tour de France will start in the western French port of Brest, organisers said late on Monday, a week after Copenhagen pulled out of staging it.

Brittany will host initial four full stages and all the build-up to the 2021 Tour, the region’s president Loig Chesnais-Girard announced.

“We were originally thinking about 2022, but the pandemic has changed all that,” Tour de France chief Christian Prudhomme said.

In the original Copenhagen schedule the first stage would have been a time trial on July 2 with two more stages in Denmark on July 3 and 4.

But the new ‘Grand Depart’ will be a week earlier so as to avoid a clash with the rescheduled Tokyo Olympic Games and a potential clash with football’s postponed European Championship (which runs from June 11-July 11), the race organisers said.

“Delighted to announce with Christian Prudhomme that we will start in Brest, pass through Finistere, Cotes d’Armor, Morbihan and Ille-et-Vilaine. It will be a great celebration and a boost for the economy,” said Chesnais-Girard.

Published in Dawn, August 12th, 2020

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