Stage 17 is very interesting. It is just 65 km. Yes, short-but-tough started to show up frequently in the grand tours in the recent years, but keeping it just 65 km is something extraordinary. There is and hardly a meter of flat road: the peloton will climb 3,100 meters in just 65 kilometers. Col de Portet (not to be confused with the Portet d’Aspet of stage 16), is included in the Tour for the first time. At 2,215 meters, it will be the highest ever summit finish in the Pyrenees in history, and the highest point of this years’ edition. It is steep and long, consistently over 10%.
“65 kms: a distance that will certainly surprise. It will indeed be the shortest normal stage of the last thirty years. Its format will be dynamic for what should prove to be a ‘dynamite stage’. The finish will be brand new. With a climb of 16 kilometers at an average gradient of over 8% and an altitude of 2,215 m, the Col de Portet has all the assets to become a new.” –Christian Prudhomme