The route for the 2008 Paris-Nice was unveiled today.
Stage 4 will climb Ventoux on the Malaucene side – but will only go as far as Mont Serein Ski Station. In the elevation profile above, you can see Mont Serein about two thirds of the way up. For those not familiar with this side of Ventoux, the Malaucene side is almost the exact same length and difficulty as the more legendary Bedoin side. Here are a few stats.
- Classic Bedoin side: 21.5 kilometres; 1,610 metres vertical
- Malaucene side: 21 kilometres; 1,570 metres vertical
- 2008 Paris-Nice: 15 kilometres; 1,090 metres vertical
In other words the finish will be almost 500 metres vertical below the summit of Ventoux. The climb will be rated 1st categorie. Whereas, Ventoux is of course usually Hors Categorie.
The course will pass through Bedoin, and climb the 3rd Categorie Col de la Madeleine (not the famous Madeleine) on the way to Malaucene. In fact, if you are climbing in the summer, this extension makes the perfect loop (climb one side, descend the other, link back via Madeleine).
The map below shows the complete climb from Malaucene – you can see Mont Serein.
I cycled this side in May 2007. See here for more. There are long very steep stretches – despite not finishing at the top, this will still be exciting.