The Dutch city of Rotterdam will host the Grand Départ for the 2024 edition of the Tour de France Femmes.
The first three stages of the recently reinstated women’s edition of the iconic cycling road race will be held in the Netherlands next year, with participants leaving Rotterdam on August 12 and finishing the first stage in The Hague.
Dordrecht will host the start of the second stage, with a double stage on August 13 to include an afternoon time trial through the streets of Rotterdam. The remainder of the route will be announced in October.
Rotterdam’s involvement will be the first time the Grand Départ has been held outside of France.
The 2024 edition of the race, which will be the third since it returned to the calendar in 2022, will comprise eight stages in total and conclude in France on August 18.
It will be held between the closing ceremony of the Paris 2024 Olympic Games on August 11 and the opening ceremony of the subsequent Paralympic Games on August 28.
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Clermont-Ferrand in France will host the Grand Départ of the 2023 edition of the Tour de France Femmes, which begins on July 23 and concludes on July 30.
The return of the Tour de France Femmes last year drew significant TV interest both domestically and in the Netherlands. French public service broadcaster France Télévisions saw a cumulative audience of 20 million, while Dutch counterpart NOS achieved an average audience share of almost 50%.
Race director Marion Rousse said of Rotterdam’s selection: “The world hub of women's cycling was a natural choice to host the biggest bicycle race on Earth. The last few seasons have been a tale of Dutch ascendancy. Starting from the home of these champions will kindle a great popular celebration. Expect their supporters to turn out in force.”
Ahmed Aboutaleb, the mayor of Rotterdam, added: “We are proud to organize the first foreign Grand Départ of the Tour de France Femmes avec Zwift together with The Hague and Dordrecht. The Tour's magic spreads far and wide. This unforgettable event will encourage our citizens to get on their bikes and expand their world.”
Suez, Krys, and NTT have all announced new or renewed sponsorships of the Tour de France Femmis in recent months.