For a short few weeks every winter our little corner of Europe is one of the centers of pro racing. The first stage race in Europe takes place in my home departement (Gard) in early February and the bigger-ticket race of the Tour de Provence happens a week later, ‘across the river’.
Last year, you’ll remember, Nairo Quintana won the race. You remember this because it was basically the only thing he won all season. I was there to watch him cross the line at Chalet Reynard and I might be again if we aren’t locked down beforehand.
The Tour de Provence had great success with this ‘Mont Ventoux stage’ (finishing 6 km before the summit), so they’ve added it again on Feb 13. Apart from this stage, which cuts right through a part of our regular ‘BreakAway tour‘ territory, the final Avignon stage does a nice loop through the pretty Alpilles.