Stage 19 - July 28: Orleans - Evry, 149.5 km

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By Tim Maloney

Flat, fast and likely wet, the penultimate stage of the 2001 Tour De France has sprinters delight on the menu, but if the afternoon thunderstorms sweep up the Loire Valley towards Paris, a break could get away on the road to Ivry before being caught by hard riding sprinter squads like Deutsche Telekom and Lampre-Daikin.



Orléans (1990 pop. 107,965) is the capital of the Loiret dept., on the Loire River. A commercial and transportation center, it has food-processing, tobacco, machine-building, electrical, pharmaceutical, chemical, and textile industries. The old city is surrounded by sprawling modern suburbs.

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