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The Tour comes back to the Vaucluse and Mt. Ventoux

ventoux_dauphine.jpgHoorah! Last thursday Claud Haut the president of the conseil general du Vaucluse announced that it had been decided that the Tour de France’s penultimate stage next year will be from Montelimar to the summit of the greant de Provence..Mt. Ventoux, all glorious 1910 metres of it. The date the riders make their ascent of the mountain via our neighbouring village of Bedoin is the 25th July 2009….it will have been 7 years since the tour was last here. It should be a fantastic spectacle, made all the more special as Lance Armstrong who won the yellow jersey on this stage last time , is staging his grand come back next year. American interest will, needless to say, be enormous. Although the grueling ascent of Ventoux has become one of the key legends of the tour, helped perhaps by the death of British rider Tommy Simpson on the mountain in 1967, the tour has only included Ventoux on 13 occasions since 1950 and on only 7 occasions has the summit been the finishing line before: 1958 (Bedoin-Mt Ventoux, won by Charly Gaul of Luxembourg); 1965 (Montpellier-Mt Ventoux, won by Raymond Poulidor of France); 1970 (Gap-Bedoin, won by Eddy Merck of Belgium; 1972 (Carnon-Page - Mt. Ventoux, won by Bernard Thevenet of France); 1987 (Carpentras - Mt. Ventoux , won by Jean-Francois Bernard of France); 2000 (Carpentras - Mt.Ventoux, won by Marco Pantani of Italy); 2002 (Lodeve - Mt. Ventoux, won by Richard Virenque of France). Anyone readers of this post looking for accommodation over that week see our other web-site www.bighouseinprovence.com

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