GENEVA, Switzerland – Over 1,300 km, 19 cantons and a difference in altitude of more than 17,000 metres are some of the highlights of the Tour de Suisse, the 9-day prime Swiss cycling competition.
The Tour of Switzerland begins 14 June in Bellinzona, the Town of Three Castles, with a 9k ride ending with a gruelling ascent to the Castello di Montebello.
With stage two, cyclists will continue beating their legs by going through four Alpine passes in one day -the Gotthard, Furka, Grimsel and Brünig- on their way to Obalden.
Furka pass is the highest climb of the race at 2,429 metres above sea level.
Cyclists arrive in the French-speaking region of Switzerland on the sixth day, after detouring into France.
As if four Alpine peaks were not enough, the final two stages seem to have been planned for climbers.
The eighth -and longest stage- begins in Delémont, and ends with an ascent to Verbier.
The ninth and final stage starts in Martigny, canton Valais, on 22 June and covers over 150 kilometres with a difference in altitude of 3,526 metres.
Whew! Keep those wheels turning.
For more details: Tour de Suisse 2014.