2019 Criterium du Dauphine Bike Race Entertainment
Day 1 – Arrival Day Lake Annecy
A quick transfer from Geneva International Airport and we’re on the edge of Lake Annecy with the perfect Hotel for ‘Unpack Once, cycle Everyday’ at the Dauphine bike race tour.
When you’ve come from ‘Lake City’ USA to ‘Lac Annecy’ French Alps the wows were coming thick and fast. With a beautiful blue sky and the amazing turquoise blue waters of the Lake, absolutely stunning.
Welcome to Lake Annecy and the majestic French Alps. A gentle warm-up ride on our local roads perfect introduction to what’s coming! Time for a café stop the impressive Arcalod 2217m the perfect backdrop! Lets stretch the legs a little, hire bikes tuned, time for the real Alps…
Welcome Dinner of the highest calibre, get ready for the Dauphine!
Day 2 – View the Criterium du Dauphine Stage 5 Boën-sur-Lignon > Voiron (Finish)
With a notable history of bike racing at Practice Bicycle Tours you expect something special with their Dauphine Bike Race Tours. Start the perfect day riding from your hotel and rolling away from the Grand Alps all the way to the Rhone River, pinch yourself how amazing this cycling really is! Perfect pace setting on the valley floor, passing vineyards Col du Clergeon 979m on the left, Grand Colombier 1534m on the right, before arriving in Lac Bourget. Criterium Dauphine super sprint action is on the menu today, 100m before the finish line is the perfect spot for the fastest men in the world lined out at maximum speed. Its an energetic day from start to finish, rest your legs in the town of Voiron with a classic Menu d’Jour- Entrée, Plat, Desert washed down with a La Dauphine Blanche. Take one final glimpse of the GC riders warming down at their team buses after a very ‘hot day’ in the saddle.
Day 3 – View the Criterium du Dauphine Stage 6 Saint-Vulbas Plaine de l’Ain > Saint-Michel-de-Maurienne (Alps)
The clouds were rumbling in the Rhone Alps for the Dauphine bike race mountain stages, ominous skies can only add to the stress for the climbers as the race will be decided over these next 3 stages. ‘Unpack Once, cycle Everyday’ with a small group is the perfect cycling holiday. Pedalling from the hotel, its not long before your enjoying the gentle slopes of Col de Leschaux as we enter one of Practice Bicycle’s favourite cycling valleys, a quick café stop and we’re on the route of the Criterium Dauphine heading for the Col du Frene. With the perfect roadside spot shared with French cycling fans, the atmosphere was building. We expected a break away and with climbing star Alaphilippe leading the way, with a gap of 12mins undoubtedly the stage was won. With the peloton strung out amongst the green fields of France, great race viewing was enjoyed. Time for our own pace line with a rewarding lunch in the Bauges National Park of beef and polenta, before free-wheeling back to the hotel in Annecy, panoramic views that even the Practice Bicycle Team themselves WOW every day!
Classic 5hrs in the saddle at the Dauphine bike race deserved a celebratory apero on the terrace.
Day 4 – View the Criterium du Dauphine Stage 7 Saint-Genix-les-Villages > Les Sept Laux-Pipay (Alps Finish)
With the Criterium Dauphine route looking for relatively ‘unknown’ alpine challenges, it was the final 19km of the Les Sept Laux-Pipay that was impacting the final podium of this Tour de France lead up stage race. Storms were predicted both in the sky and in the peloton, and the excitement was building as we rode the valley roads to take on our own challenge of this difficult French Alps Col. Fully supported, with the unique skill set of PB, the mountain was a great achievement. With the village bells chiming down the mountain, the ‘hidden gem’ restaurant was the perfect spot to end todays ride. Bel Excuse is a nice name for such a wonderful restaurant experience and we certainly didn’t need a great ‘excuse’ with fantastic flavours. Thunder storms were echoing throughout the mountains as the Dauphine bike race approached with the amazing speed of the top 20 racers flew by. It took more than 20 mins to cheer on the riders, this was the perfect race viewing spot. Great atmosphere in the village bar with beer, café and digestifs and the final km’s on the big screen!
Day 5 – View the Criterium du Dauphine Stage 8 Cluses > Champéry (Start)
With our discerning Bike Race fan guests appreciating the variety of race viewing opportunities, the planning, reconnoitering and time spent on a magnificent Criterium du Dauphine Bike Race Tour is a pleasure. Today was the stage start in Cluses, including one last opportunity of a challenging, breathtaking ride into the Grand Alps and the Chaine des Aravis. The legs were feeling like a stage race rider after a choice of ride routes throughout the tour. Tailored specifically to the guests, this ride included the Col de Bluffy and the Col de la Colombière what a perfect ride to finish a memorable Criterium du Dauphine Bike Tour. Passing over famous roads and through picture perfect ski villages, we were among the high pastures and those famous French cow bells only dots in the distance. Picture opportunities are everywhere in this ‘Cycling Paradise’ and the summit will be one that we cherish! What goes up, must come down and its just as spectacular with the safe wheels of the guides at Practice Bicycle. With this being the final mountain stage of the Dauphine bike race, the professionals were all preparing on the stationary trainers for one final effort in the Alps. Its an amazing opportunity to be this close to the world stars of cycling, the French fans cheered loudest for Bardet and the peloton rolled away one final time. It was our time for a celebratory lunch among the peaks of the French Alps, all great flavours were on offer, it started with locally produced charcuterie and salad, a must try diots and polenta followed by myrtilles tarte and Rose!
Our specialty Bike Race Tours offer the very best of bike race viewing, unbelievable rides, and amazing local restaurant lunch experiences, Unpack Once, Cycle everyday.