July 24 Stage 21: Créteil to Paris (Champs-Élysées), 95km (59 miles)
For the first time, rather than traveling by high-speed train, the riders will take a chartered jetliner on the final morning (from Grenoble to Orly Airport) to reach the start of stage 21 in Créteil. The early kilometers of the ultra-short stage will see the usual slow procession as photographers get shots of the yellow jersey sipping champagne at his team car before the speed picks up for the eight laps and 50km of racing around the traditional circuit up and down the Champs-Élysées and around the Tuileries Gardens.
THE SCOOP: No time bonuses are awarded at this Tour, so there are unlikely to be any changes in the final classification, but look for fireworks in the sprinters’ green-jersey competition. There’ll be a big intermediate sprint on the fourth lap as well as the final dash to the line, 35km later.
OVERALL RATING: *