- The race 2011
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• Stage town on 64 previous occasions
• 87,000 inhabitants
• Prefecture of Pyrénées-Atlantiques (64)
The birthplace of Henri IV, Pau has also welcomed the race in style 64 times and is the Tour’s most visited city after Paris and Bordeaux. Alfredo Binda was the first rider to win there in 1930. When the race last finished in Pau, in 2010, Pierrick Fédrigo had to be even more outstanding as he was part of a prestigious breakaway, which featured, in particular Armstrong. The seven-time winner of the Tour was even in the lead on his own at one point in the ascent of the Tourmalet. But the attack did not have the same impact as during his years of reign. He finished the stage in 6th place.
• Stage town on 51 previous occasions
• 2,700 inhabitants
• Head of the canton of Haute-Garonne (31)
In 1910, Luchon entered the race’s history books, by hosting the start and then the finish of the two first high mountain stages of the Tour de France, with two victories for Octave Lapize, the future winner that year. In this context, the town is more than worthy of its nickname of the Queen of the Pyrenees. One hundred years later, a similar programme was created for the Tour’s riders. Thomas Voeckler won in Bagnères-de-Luchon, wearing the French Champion’s jersey. Before him Federico Bahamontes, Raymond Poulidor, Eddy Merckx and Luis Ocaña had also been successful on the Allées d’Etigny.