Stage 1 - July 1: Futuroscope Individual Time Trial, 16.5 km
The opening stage for the 2000 Tour De France is a fast, flat 16.5km loop around the Futuroscope Theme Park. At 3.5km, the Cote de Jaunay-Clan is the only climb of the day, with the rest of the opening TT a rapid, rolling loop around Futuroscope.
Although Lance Armstrong (USPS) is touted as the favorite and his final start position and early experience as a sprint triathlete should help, many expect him to be hard pressed by David Millar (Cofidis), winner of the recent Route Du Sud 15km TT stage. But the Route Du Sud is hardly the Tour De France and Armstrong should make it into Yellow barring any mechanical issues.
Don't forget Lance's major TT rivals either: Jan Ullrich (Telekom) is the defending world TT champ and Abraham Olano (O.N.C.E.) succeeded Ullrich in '98, so both of these guys can go against the clock. Outsider Michael Sandstod had bad luck with his bike and his new TT frame was broken in transit, so he'll be forced to ride on a teammate's bike.
Check Cyclingnews.com for live updates from Futuroscope from 1630 CET.
Start time: 16:15
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