Mad Month of Sport is sadly over, but the world-class sports coverage continues on ITV!
In the 2013 Tour de France event, presenter Gary Imlach and reporter Ned Boulting are joined by cycling legend Chris Boardman and commentators Phil Liggett and Paul Sherwen for the 21-stage race, which starts on Saturday June 29 in Corsica and ends at its traditional home, the Champs-Elysees in Paris, on Sunday July 21. Extended highlights will also broadcast from 1900-2000 each day, with 88 hours of cycling to be shown on ITV4 including the entirety of the first day’s stage action.
Alongside terrestrial TV coverage, ITV.com/tourdefrance will feature the live action and highlights as well as exclusive features, and the @ITVCycling Twitter feed will keep fans up-to-date with the latest developments.
The tour covers 3,360km and this year will remain on the mainland of France once it leaves the island of Corsica, taking in a 25k team time trial challenge at Nice, two individual time trials from Avranches to Mont-Saint-Michel and from Embrun to Chorges, and two climbs of the Alpe-d’Huez, both on the 18th stage.
This year’s 100th edition of the Tour de France promises plenty of action. Defending champion, Sir Bradley Wiggins has been sidelined following illness and a knee-injury, leaving Team Sky’s hopes in the hands of Wiggo’s right-hand man from the 2012 Tour, Chris Froome.
Froomey is looking to go one better than last year and is leading Team Sky’s bid to win a second successive Tour de France title. Froome finished a successful summer with Bronze at the Olympic Games and had his first taste of leading the Team in August’s La Vuelta a Espana. His biggest rival for the Yellow Jersey is Spain’s Alberto Contador who already knows how it feels to ride the Champs Elysee as the winner of the biggest stage-race in the world. He is one of five riders to have won all three Grand Tours of road cycling and has won the Tour de France twice.
No discussion of the Tour de France is complete without mention of the ‘Manx Missile’. Having supported Sir Bradley in his successful 2012 campaign to become the first Brit to with the Tour de France, Cav is looking to repeat his Green Jersey win of 2011 with his new team, Omega Pharma-Quick Step. And, in the process, he aims to get closer to Eddy Merck’s record of 34 stage wins; Cav currently sits in 4th place on the all-time list with 23 wins. Some people predict this feat could be accomplished as early as 2014, which seems impossible to others.
One way or another, the 100th edition of the Tour de France will have all the emotions and drama we have come to expect and ITV4 will be there every pedal of the way.
ITV4 live broadcast schedule*:
- Saturday 29 June Stage 1 1055-1630
- Sunday 30 June Stage 2 1300-1630
- Monday 1 July Stage 3 1300-1530
- Tuesday 2 July Stage 4 1430-1630
- Wednesday 3 July Stage 5 1400-1700
- Thursday 4 July Stage 6 1400-1630
- Friday 5 July Stage 7 1400-1630
- Saturday 6 July Stage 8 1330-1630
- Sunday 7 July Stage 9 1200-1600
- Monday 8 July Rest day
- Tuesday 9 July Stage 10 1400-1630
- Wednesday 10 July Stage 11 1400-1700
- Thursday 11 July Stage 12 1400-1630
- Friday 12 July Stage 13 1400-1630
- Saturday 13 July Stage 14 1400-1630
- Sunday 14 July Stage 15 1330-1630
- Monday 15 July Rest day
- Tuesday 16 July Stage 16 1400-1630
- Wednesday 17 July Stage 17 1400-1630
- Thursday 18 July Stage 18 1300-1700
- Friday 19 July Stage 19 1000-1630
- Saturday 20 July Stage 20 1400-1630
- Sunday 21 July Stage 21 1630-210
*Correct at time of publication