Prizegiving was attended to by the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge, and Prince Harry, following a helicopter flight from their earlier engagement at Harewood House.Bernard Hinault was also in attendance, in his official capacity as a Tour de France representative, on the podium.
Stage 1 result & General classification after Stage 1
During the stage, Sacha Modolo withdrew from the tour due to illness.Cyril Lemoine took the lead for the King of the Mountains jersey, from Jens Voigt, having scored the most points during the day. Blel Kadri and Thomas Voeckler were the first two riders over the Category 2 climb of Holme Moss, both riders later returning to the peloton. Towards the finish, Alberto Contador and Chris Froome each took the opportunity to test the opposition, reducing the peloton to a leading group of 21 riders up the short, but steep, Category 4 climb of Jenkin Road Hill. Vincenzo Nibali took the lead with 2 km (1 mi) remaining, and held this short lead to the finish line.
This short 155 km stage began at Parker's Piece in the university city of Cambridge and started by heading in a generally southern direction towards Saffron Walden. From Saffron Walden the route travelled east, and then south, to the western outskirts of Braintree, Essex, before following the road west to Felsted. The route turned south to Chelmsford, and then west to an intermediate sprint at Epping Forest. From here, the race continued south into the British capital, which hosted the Grand Départ during the 2007 Tour de France. This was a prestigious stage which took the peloton through the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park, and travelled past some of London's most famous landmarks, before finishing near to Buckingham Palace, with the finish line on The Mall.
Jean-Marc Bideau and Jan Bárta spent 147 km (91 mi) out in front of the peloton, which was the greater part of the stage. Both riders each taking part in their first Tour de France, Bideau was the first to succumb to the gradual acceleration of the peloton, with 8 km (5 mi) remaining, on the outskirts of central London. Meanwhile, Bárta managed to stay in front for a further 2 km (1 mi). The peloton was then together for a bunch sprint on The Mall. Marcel Kittel succeeded in securing his sixth stage win at the Tour de France, and his second stage win of the 2014 Tour.
The first stage in France departed from the seaside resort of Le Touquet, with racing officially starting just east of Cucq. The first climb of the day was the Category 4 climb of the Côte de Campagnette, 34 km (21 mi) into the stage, just north of Bimont. At 159 m (522 ft), this was the highest point of a relatively fast and flat stage, which travelled through the undulating lowlands of Nord-Pas-de-Calais. The route passed through Saint-Omer, with an intermediate sprint at Cassel. The race then travelled through Steenvoorde, over the Category 4 climb of Mont Noir, and followed the road south-east from Bailleul and Armentières to Lille. The stage finished just east of the centre of Lille, at Villeneuve-d'Ascq.
Andy Schleck retired from the tour, before the departure from Le Touquet. A few kilometres into the stage, Chris Froome fell in an accident which also involved Bauke Mollema and Ion Izagirre. Froome was able to rejoin the peloton. By the time the race had reached the top of Mont Noir, Thomas Voeckler was in front of the peloton along with Luis Ángel Maté. Greg Henderson was forced to retire, following a crash towards the end of the race, whilst Voeckler was caught by the peloton with 16 km (10 mi) remaining, with Maté also returning to the bunch around this time. The peloton was ready, once again, for a sprint finish. Marcel Kittel won his third stage out of four, but admitted that the stage had been fast and very nervous.
Inclement weather prompted tour organizers to remove two cobble segments from the stage route for safety reasons, leaving seven cobble segments for the riders to navigate.
Wet roads contributed to a multitude of crashes before the riders encountered the cobbles. Reigning champion Chris Froome was involved in two crashes at the 35 km (22 mi) point and the 83 km (52 mi) point. These crashes, combined with a crash the previous day and the lingering effects of a serious crash in the Critérium du Dauphiné several weeks prior, forced his abandonment from the race.
Upon encountering the cobbles, the peloton splintered, with yellow jersey-wearer Vincenzo Nibali's team Astana leading the pack. Nibali's group opened up a lead of nearly two minutes prior to encountering the seventh and last cobble segment, upon which Astana's Lieuwe Westra accelerated, leaving behind all but Nibali, teammate Jakob Fuglsang, and Belkin Pro Cycling's Lars Boom. Boom attacked the Astana riders on the last cobble segment and held his lead through the final kilometers to take his first victory of the 2014 season, as well as his first career stage win in the Tour de France. This came nine years to the day after the previous Dutch stage victory in the Tour. Nibali finished 19 seconds behind Boom, in so doing putting two minutes into GC contenders Andrew Talansky, Tejay van Garderen, and Alejandro Valverde, and nearly two-and-a-half minutes into Tour favorite Alberto Contador.
This relatively fast and flat stage travelled from the department of Pas de Calais, through the departments of Somme, Aisne, and Marne. The stage started by heading south through Bapaume, Péronne, Ham, Tergnier and Chauny. The route then began to head east, over the Category 4 climb of Côte de Coucy-le-Château-Auffrique, with an intermediate sprint 12 km (7 mi) later at Pinon. This was followed by the Category 4 climb of the Côte de Roucy, and the road east to Bourgogne. Finally, the race headed south into Reims.
Arnaud Gérard, Tom Leezer, Luis Maté and Jérôme Pineau took part in an early escape, ahead of the peloton. Crashes occurred during a day of sidewinds, along with a second day of rain, forcing the retirement of Xabier Zandio and Jesús Hernández, amongst others. The early escapees were each brought back to the peloton from 20 km (12 mi) remaining, with Maté managing to stay in front for a further 8 km (5 mi). Marcel Kittel had a mechanical problem in the final 2 km (1 mi), and Michał Kwiatkowski attacked with 1 km (1 mi) remaining. However, the sprint was won by André Greipel who, along with other sprinters, caught Kwiatkowski before the finish.
Five riders were in the breakaway for the day. Sylvain Chavanel was the best climber in the breakaway. However on the final climb Blel Kadri launched an attack which nobody was able to follow. Behind in the peloton Tinkoff–Saxo started chasing so that Alberto Contador could possibly win the stage. With 2 kilometres to go Blel Kadri had a 4-minute advantage over the peloton which would be enough for him to become the first French rider to win a stage of that Tour de France. As the peloton reached the final kilometre Contador made a number of attacks to try to gain time on Vincenzo Nibali and Richie Porte. He could only gain 3 seconds on Nibali and 7 on Porte. Critérium du Dauphiné winner Andrew Talansky of Garmin–Sharp crashed and finished 35th. He was over 4 and half minutes down in the overall standings in 16th place. Blel Kadri won the stage by over 2 minutes and also took charge of the King of the Mountains classification.
This low mountain stage travelled from the department of Vosges, into Haut-Rhin. The stage departed from Gérardmer with racing officially starting between Gérardmer and Xonrupt-Longemer. The race headed east to the Category 2 Col de la Schlucht at 1,140 m (3,740 ft), and descended north-east into the valley floor, then south-east, towards the outskirts of Orbey. The route then began to climb the Category 3 Col du Wettstein at 880 m (2,887 ft) before a long 21 km (13 mi) descent east to the outskirts of Turckheim. From here, the route headed south and, once again, the road quickly rose to the Category 3 Côte des Cinq Châteaux at 560 m (1,837 ft), and was quickly followed by the Category 2 Côte de Gueberschwihr at 559 m (1,834 ft) before heading south-west. An intermediate sprint took place at Linthal, before heading west for the biggest climb of the day. The Category 1 Le Markstein at 1,183 m (3,881 ft) gave a 15 km (9 mi) ascent to the ski station, with the ascent continuing south-east into the Category 3 Le Grand Ballon at 1,336 m (4,383 ft). The route then took a fast 22 km (14 mi) descent continuing south-east into Cernay and Wittelsheim, through Pfastatt and finally finishing in Mulhouse.
Stage winner Vincenzo Nibali, followed by two Movistar Team riders, before the final climb at Plancher-les-Mines
This mountainous stage set off from the department of Haut-Rhin, headed back into Vosges and finished in the department of Haute-Saône. The stage started at Mulhouse, with racing officially starting just north of Wittenheim. The route turned north-west at Ensisheim and zig-zagged from Raedersheim, through Gundolsheim to Soultzmatt. The race then began the ascent of the Category 2 Col du Firstplan (fr) at 722 m (2,369 ft) before descending to a sprint at Muhlele (Gunsbach). The race began to head west just before the sprint. This was rapidly followed by the race travelling through Munster. The route then turned to the south-west and traversed two Category 1 climbs. The first climb was the Petit Ballon at 1,163 m (3,816 ft) and then the Col du Platzerwasel at 1,193 m (3,914 ft). This was followed by a 21 km (13 mi) descent to Kruth. The route then continued over the Category 2 Col d'Oderen (fr) at 884 m (2,900 ft), the Category 3 Col des Croix (fr) at 678 m (2,224 ft) and the Category 1 Col des Chevrères at 914 m (2,999 ft). The race descended into Plancher-les-Mines before immediately beginning the Category 1 ascent to the finish at La Planche des Belles Filles, which was at 1,035 m (3,396 ft).
After the rest day in Besançon, this low mountain stage began in the department of Doubs, headed into Jura and finished in Ain. The stage departed from Besançon and had its racing officially starting just south-west of Avanne-Aveney. The route headed south-west to Arc-et-Senans and then turned south through Chamblay, Arbois, Montrond and Pont-du-Navoy to an intermediate sprint at Charcier. The southerly route then continued through Les Crozets and Chassal before entering the Jura Mountains. The first climb of the day was the Category 3 climb of the Côte de Rogna at 766 m (2,513 ft), and then into the Category 3 climb of the Côte de Choux at 834 m (2,736 ft), which followed immediately into the Category 4 climb of the Côte de Désertin. There was then an approximate 10 km (6 mi) descent before the climb of the Côte d'Échallon at 969 m (3,179 ft). The stage finished with a 19 km (12 mi) descent to Oyonnax.