Yo, I have a big goal for 2022!
I’m going to ride the three biggest bike races in the world, the Giro d’Italia, the Tour de France and the Vuelta a España.
The exciting thing about the project? I’ll ride the entire route of the respective Grand Tour, including the transfer routes, without support.
No one has ever tried that before me. It’s my personal battle against the clock; I want to cover the distance in the fastest possible time.
I am looking forward to this special journey through a total of ten European countries! My activity will be available via a live tracking service, so you can follow and accompany me at any time, day or night.
I will start on 26 April 2022 with the Giro d’Italia, which starts in Budapest this year. The official route of the race from Budapest to Verona comprises over 21 stages, 3,410 kilometres and about 51,000 metres of altitude. On top of that there are the rest days where the pros take a break (3 rest days in the Giro d’Italia). I won’t be taking any rest days, but will ride through the course. That way I have a bit more time for the whole tour than the pros and can finish all three Grand Tours at about the same time as the pro peloton. After the three Hungarian opening stages, I will ride via Slovenia to Italy, where I will continue on Sicily around Mount Etna with the 4th stage.
When the Giro is finished at the end of May, I will already be looking towards the Tour de France. The 109th edition of the Tour de France starts this year in Denmark’s capital Copenhagen on 01 July. After the opening stages in Denmark, the race continues on 4 July in northern France, where eleven cobbled sections await me after stage 4 (Dunkirk to Calais). With the super steep sections (> 20 %) of La Planche des Belles Filles in the Vosges, the first serious altitude metres of this year’s Tour de France await me.
The second week of the Tour goes through the Alps. Here I will conquer the Galibier, the Col de Granon, the Alpe d’Huez (so far I only know it as Alpe du Zwift) and the Croix de Fer. The stage before the last rest day then ends in Carcassonne.
The final week of the Tour will take us to the Pyrenees. Three more difficult mountain stages are on the programme. Here, the Hourquette d’Ancizan and Col de Val Louron-Azet, as well as the mountain finish in Hautacam and the Mur de Peguere have to be climbed. With the undulating time trial (stage 20), the Pyrenees are left behind and on the final day, the sprint finale on the Avenue des Champs Élysées is scheduled in the classic manner. So after 3,328 official kilometres, I will end the Tour de France and turn my gaze towards the Vuelta.
The Vuelta a Espana starts in Utrecht in the Netherlands. It goes over three stages through a total of 34 Dutch municipalities. The professionals will start with a 23-kilometre team time trial. Stages two and three will take them through ‘s-Hertogenbosch, Utrecht and North Brabant to Breda.
The whole course, typical Vuelta, is very demanding and the Spanish part starts, after the first rest day, in northern Spain.
On the 5th day of the race there is already a lot of climbing and stages 6 and 7 are also mountainous. Among others, it goes to Ascensión al Pico Jano, a difficult climb of the 1st category.
The second week will be a key week for everyone, here it is important to get through well and save as much energy as possible. The finale of the second week of the race is particularly tough. Stage 15, for example, goes into the Sierra Nevada, which the Bora-hansgrohe boys and Kristian Blummenfelt, among others, know more than well from their high-altitude training camps. So there are some passages clearly above 2000 metres waiting for me.
After the flat 16th stage at the beginning of the final week, a vuelta-typical final week is served up.
There is climbing, climbing and more climbing. Stages 17 to 20 are all very mountainous and are absolutely worthy of the final week with some steep ramps. After the 176-kilometre stage to Puerto de Navacerrada, the final stage is flat to Madrid. Because as Andy Möller said back in 1992: “Milan or Madrid, the main thing is Italy!” I will thus, after all those weeks in the saddle, ceremoniously end my “Triple Alt Tour” project and pop the corks.
All three cycling races together usually cover a total distance of about 10,500 kilometres. That’s the distance the pros cycle in just over nine weeks.
Including all the transfers between the finish and the next start, the 10,500 kilometres become 22,000 kilometres for me.
I’m really up for it and I’m looking forward to your support!