The Grand Tour is the combination of 3 stage races: Tour de France, Giro d’Italia, and Vuelta a Espana. They are all 3-week races with daily stages. Over 23 days there are 21 stages with 2 days of rest.
Tour de France – takes place in France of course and is the most prestigious and oldest Grand Tour. It began in 1903 and typically takes place in July and covers around 2,200 miles.
Giro d’Italia – Tour of Italy in English, this race is held in Italy and started in 1909. It is considered the second most important stage race and is held in May. The stages change, but it typically covers around 2,100 miles.
Vuelta a Espana – this tour takes place in Spain and started in 1935. It is held in August and September and recently has been about 2,100 miles.
The Monuments are 5 of cycling’s most prestigious and difficult single day races.
Milan-San Remo – race between Milan and San Remo in Italy that began in 1907. It is a long 185.2 miles and takes place in March.
Tour of Flanders – race held in Belgium in early April that began in 1913. The route is currently 165 miles.
Paris-Roubaix – race in Northern France that goes from Paris to Roubaix that began in 1896. The route is currently about 160 miles. Takes place in April.
Liege-Bastogne-Liege – also known as “The Old Lady” it is a race in Belgium that started in 1892 making it the oldest of the Monuments. Route is from Liege to Bastogne and then back to Liege, about 160 miles. Takes place in late April.
Giro di Lombardia – Tour of Lombardy is in Italy and began in 1905. It takes place in early October and is about 159 miles.
UCI Road World Championship
Road racing world championship organized by the UCI. Takes place in a different region every year in late September. National teams compete.
Triple Crown of Cycling
Achievement of winning 3 major titles in the same season. The titles that must be won are the Tour de France, Giro d’Italia, and the UCI Road World Championship. This has only been accomplished 3 times in history by Eddy Merckx, Stephen Roche, and Annemiek van Vleuten.
Amstel Gold Race – Netherlands single day race held since 1966 that takes place in April. Takes place in the hilly southern region and is about 158 miles.
Criterium du Dauphine – southeaster France stage race that takes place in June. 8 stages for a total of about 742 miles.
Gent-Wevelgem – Belgium single day race held since 1934, takes place in late March. About 156 miles long.
Grand prix Cycliste de Montreal – Single day race held in Montreal, Quebec, Canada since 2010. A circuit-based race with 18 laps of 7.7 miles for a total of about 138 miles.
Grand Prix Cycliste de Quebec – Single day race held in Quebec City in Canada since 2010. A circuit-based race with 11 laps of 11.25 miles for a total of about 124 miles.
Paris-Nice – France stage race that takes place in March and has been held since 1933. 8 stages cover about 744 miles.
Tirreno-Adriatico – Italy stage race that takes place in March and has been held since 1966. 7 stages cover about 728 miles.
Tour de Pologne – Poland stage race that takes place in August and has been held since 1928. 7 stages cover about 746 miles.
Tour de Romandie – Switzerland stage race that goes through the Romandie region. Takes place in May and has been held since 1947. Consists of 5 stages plus a prologue for a total of about 444 miles.
Tour de Suisse – Tour of Switzerland takes place in June and has been held since 1933. 8 stages cover about 833 miles.
Tour Down Under – Australian race that takes place in January and has been held since 1999. Most recent race was 6 stages with 541 miles.
Tour of the Basque Country – Spain race that takes place in April and has been held since 1924. Most recent race was 6 stages with 549 miles.
Volta a Catalunya – Spain race that takes place in March and has been held since 1911. Most recent race was 7 stages with 755 miles.
5 thoughts on “Great Cycling Road Races”
Merry Christmas, Jim!
Thank you. Merry Christmas!
I live in the heart of downtown near our capital where many races are held & I’ve enjoyed since childhood. Minus the detours & road blocks, lol but they keep the cyclists safe.