These are the profiles for the individual stages in the 2011 Tour de France, with Stage 1 on 2 July, and Stage 11 on 13 July. In February 2012 following doping allegations a decision by the Court of Arbitration for Sport stripped of all results of Alberto Contador obtained in and later than the 2010 Tour de France, which led him to being stripped of that title, as well as his results in the 2011 Tour de France. His results have thus been removed here, with cyclists behind him moving up one spot.
The Tour started with a road stage rather than the traditional prologue time trial, and with an uphill finish. The day started with a non-racing parade over the tidal Passage du Gois. When underway, the riders initially followed the coast, where the wind could have had an impact, before heading inland to Les Herbiers and the finish on the Mont des Alouettes.
The first breakaway of the Tour was formed by three riders: Lieuwe Westra of Vacansoleil–DCM, Perrig Quemeneur of Team Europcar and Jérémy Roy of FDJ. They attacked from the very beginning of the race and their maximum advantage was over six minutes. The top places in the intermediate sprint after 87 km (54 mi) were won by the breakaway members and the new points distribution saw green jersey contenders competing for the rest of points. Tyler Farrar took fourth place ahead of André Greipel. About nine kilometres from the end, Maxim Iglinsky collided with a spectator, and the resulting crash held up the majority of the field, including Alberto Contador and Samuel Sánchez. This group were chasing the lead group of 78 riders, until within the last three kilometers, they were delayed by another crash that had split the lead group approximately in half. On the uphill finish, an attack by Fabian Cancellara was successfully countered by Philippe Gilbert, who was favourite for the stage, and who finished three seconds clear of Cadel Evans, who finished a similar margin clear of the chasing group. Due to rules that protect riders against time lost due to accidents in the latter stages of a race, about 40 riders who had been in the same group as Gilbert and others at 3 km (2 mi) to go, but who were delayed by a later crash, were awarded the same time as those who finished just behind Gilbert and Evans, but those who caught up with them, having been delayed in the Iglinsky incident, lost at least 1'20".
Stage 1 result and general classification after stage 1
The team time trial was relatively short at 23 km (14 mi) and mostly flat, so large time gaps were not expected. Garmin–Cervélo, who saw all their GC contenders lose nearly two minutes on stage 1, won the stage to place their world championThor Hushovd in the overall lead, while Cadel Evans, who had a three second advantage over Hushovd going into the stage, was almost able to take the yellow jersey, as his BMC Racing Team team took just four seconds longer than Garmin–Cervélo to come second, a fraction of a second faster than Team Sky.
Many riders tried to get into the breakaway in this stage, but the final breakaway was formed of 4 riders: José Iván Gutiérrez (Movistar Team), Tristan Valentin (Cofidis), Sébastien Turgot (Team Europcar), and Anthony Delaplace (Saur–Sojasun). They had a maximum advantage of 5 minutes. The intermediate sprint was won by the breakaway riders, while in the pelotonBorut Božič took the highest remaining points haul. José Joaquín Rojas and Tom Boonen were penalised for irregular sprinting at this point, a penalty that cost Rojas his lead in the green jersey competition. After the intermediate sprint, Garmin–Cervélo set a very high pace and there were many crashes in the peloton, one of which involved Janez Brajkovič, who had to abandon due to a broken collarbone and concussion. Another crash involved Nicki Sørensen who fall off when his bike was clipped by a photo motorcycle and it was dragged along by it for 200m. Alberto Contador, Robert Gesink, Tom Boonen, Sylvain Chavanel and Iván Velasco, who sustained a broken collarbone, were among other riders who crashed on this stage. The breakaway was caught with 45 km (28 mi) to go, but Thomas Voeckler (Team Europcar) and Jérémy Roy (FDJ) attacked with 32 km (20 mi) to go, creating a maximum gap of one minute, and the race was in the last 2 km (1 mi) before Voeckler was caught. A late attack by Edvald Boasson Hagen disrupted the lead out lines for the main sprinters, but Mark Cavendish nevertheless took the victory ahead of Philippe Gilbert in the last 50 metres. There were no changes among the leading riders and contenders for the General Classification, but Gilbert assumed the lead in the sprinters' competition, although this was confirmed only after Rojas had been presented with the leader's jersey on the podium.
This was another undulating stage with a hill in the last few kilometres, expected to suit classics specialists. Lieuwe Westra (Vacansoleil–DCM) initiated the main break of the day, eventually joined by his teammate Johnny Hoogerland, Anthony Roux (FDJ), Leonardo Duque (Cofidis) and Adriano Malori (Lampre–ISD). Their lead reached 12 minutes, and Hoogerland added to the point in the mountains classification that he already had on the first two categorised climbs of the day, and thus ensured that he would take over the polka-dot jersey, and he, along with Roux and Duque, had ceased trying to stay clear when there were still some 60 km remaining, but Westra and Malori persisted, with Malori only caught with less than three km remaining. A late attack by Jelle Vanendert (Omega Pharma–Lotto) and Thomas Voeckler (Team Europcar) was caught with a kilometre remaining, and the sprint was eventually won by Edvald Boasson Hagen of (Team Sky), with fellow Norwegian Thor Hushovd finishing third to retain the yellow jersey. Although there were several heavy rain showers, there were fewer falls than in the previous stage, although GC contender Levi Leipheimer (Team RadioShack) fell and lost more than a minute.
This stage had the first category two climb of the race, and brought the race into the higher climbs of the Massif Central. By the ascent of the day's main climb, in the final 25 km, four riders from the original nine-man break remained clear: Rui Costa (Movistar Team), Christophe Riblon (Ag2r–La Mondiale), Tejay van Garderen (HTC–Highroad) and Cyril Gautier (Team Europcar). On that climb, several riders attempted to attack from the group, of whom Juan Antonio Flecha (Team Sky) and Alexander Vinokourov (Astana) attained a considerable margin over the peloton as they pursued the leader. Vinokourov started the stage only 32 seconds behind overall leader Thor Hushovd, and this was thought to be a bid to take the yellow jersey. The final climb to the Super Besse ski station saw several attempts at breaks among the leaders, and eventually Costa was able to open a gap to the rest of the breakaway group. Vinokourov overhauled the rest of the escapees, but he was caught within the last kilometre, while Costa won the stage. Philippe Gilbert broke clear of the peloton to secure second place, and the lead in the points competition, while Hushovd, contrary to expectations, finished in the first group to retain his overall lead. Van Garderen, by virtue of having been the first rider over the category two Col de la Croix Saint-Robert, assumed the lead in the climbers' category.
This stage, like the preceding one, had more points available for the king of the mountains competition than all the preceding stages added together. There were no breaks from the peloton until the first climb of the day, which was contested by Thomas Voeckler (Team Europcar) and Johnny Hoogerland (Vacansoleil–DCM), who were joined by Juan Antonio Flecha (Team Sky), Sandy Casar (FDJ), Luis León Sánchez (Rabobank) and Niki Terpstra (Quick-Step). Terpstra was unable to stay with the escapees on higher climbs as the day went on, but the remaining five riders extended their lead. An early fall by Alberto Contador, after a collision with Vladimir Karpets, caused aggravation to an earlier knee injury, but a later fall delayed many riders, and caused the elimination of GC contenders Alexander Vinokourov and Jurgen Van den Broeck, and injury to Andreas Klöden and other riders. The pursuit of the breakaway was delayed to allow riders involved in the crash, or who stopped to help their colleagues, to rejoin the peloton, thus increasing the likelihood that Voeckler, less than a minute and a half behind in the general classification, would take over the race leadership. Within the final 40 km, two of the leading five riders were involved in a dramatic crash after Juan Antonio Flecha was sideswiped by a France Télévisions car during an overtaking manoeuvre, causing fellow breakaway rider, Johnny Hoogerland to crash into a barbed wire fence. His wound required 33 stitches. Although both riders were able to finish the stage and they shared the combative rider award for the day (one of the rare cases when it had been jointly awarded), they were unable to stay ahead of the peloton. The other three riders from the breakaway retained most of their lead, with little urgency among the peloton for reducing their winning margin, and Sánchez sprinted clear to take the stage. Voeckler assumed the overall lead and Hoogerland had gained enough points prior to his crash to regain leadership in the King of the Mountains competition, while Philippe Gilbert was again the first to finish from the main group, extending his lead in the points classification.
On another stage that was expected to suit sprint specialists, the six members of the breakaway group (Rubén Pérez, Lars Boom, Andriy Hrivko, Mickael Delage, Tristan Valentin and Jimmy Engoulvent were unable to gain an advantage of more than four and a half minutes. Amid heavy rain, the break was not caught until the final 3 km (2 mi) of the race, and Mark Cavendish took the bunch sprint for his third win of the race, and the resultant points, in combination with those he took by being the first non-breakaway rider at the intermediate sprint, allowed him to take the leadership in the green jersey competition. The stage had no impact on the overall placings.
^Jerseys appearing in the table on the left of the page indicate those worn by the cyclist during the particular stage, while those appearing in the table on the right of the page indicate those awarded to the cyclist after the stage.
^The bibs are designated to all remaining riders within the leading team.