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Col d'Izoard

Coordinates: 44°49′11″N 06°44′06″E / 44.81972°N 6.73500°E / 44.81972; 6.73500
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Col d'Izoard
Memorial at the top of Col d'Izoard
Elevation2,360 m (7,743 ft)[1]
Traversed byD902
LocationHautes-Alpes, France
Coordinates44°49′11″N 06°44′06″E / 44.81972°N 6.73500°E / 44.81972; 6.73500
Col d'Izoard is located in Alps
Col d'Izoard
Col d'Izoard
Location of Col d'Izoard

Col d'Izoard (2,360 m (7,743 ft)) is a mountain pass in the Alps in the department of Hautes-Alpes in France.

It is accessible in summer via the D902 road, connecting Briançon on the north and the valley of the Guil in Queyras, which ends at Guillestre in the south. There are forbidding and barren scree slopes with protruding pinnacles of weathered rock on the upper south side. Known as the Casse Déserte, this area has formed a dramatic backdrop to some key moments in the Tour de France and at times in the Giro d'Italia, and often featured in iconic 1950s black-and-white photos of the race.[2][3]

Cycle racing[edit]

Details of the climb[edit]

Altimetry of the climb.

From the south, the climb starts at Guillestre from where it is 31.5 km (19.6 mi) in length, at an average gradient of 4.8%. The climb proper starts at the junction with the D947, near Chateau Queyras from where the ascent is 15.9 km (9.9 mi) long.[2] Over this distance, the climb gains 1,095 m (3,593 ft) at an average of 6.9% and a maximum sustained gradient of 10%.[4]

The climb from Briançon, to the north-west, via Cervières to the col is 19 km (11.8 mi) in length, climbing 1,105 m (3,625 ft) at an average gradient of 5.8% and a maximum gradient of 8.9%.[5]

On both sides mountain pass cycling milestones are placed every kilometre. They indicate the current height, the height of the summit, the distance to the summit, as well as the average slope in the following kilometre.

In general, the col is closed from October to early June.

Tour de France[edit]

The Col d'Izoard is frequently on the route of the Tour de France, where it is frequently classified as an Hors Categorie climb.[6][7] Warren Barguil won the 2017 Tour de France's Stage 18, becoming the first cyclist to win a Tour de France stage that finished on the Col d'Izoard - it has been on the route 34 times previously in the Tour de France since 1922 but never before had a stage finished there.[8]

Several of the Tour de France's more memorable moments have occurred on the Col d'Izoard, particularly the exploits of Gino Bartali, Fausto Coppi, Louison Bobet and Bernard Thévenet. A small cycling museum is at the summit, along with a memorial to Coppi and Bobet.

Panoramic view from the summit
One of the mountain pass cycling milestones placed along the climb from Guillestre

Appearances in the Tour de France[edit]

Year Stage Category Start Finish Leader at the summit
2019 18 H Embrun Valloire  Damiano Caruso (ITA)
2017 18 H Briançon Col d'Izoard  Warren Barguil (FRA)
2014 14 H Grenoble Risoul  Joaquim Rodríguez (ESP)
2011 18 H Pinerolo Galibier/Serre-Chevalier  Maxim Iglinsky (KAZ)
2006 15 H Gap Alpe-d'Huez  Stefano Garzelli (ITA)
2003 9 H Bourg-d'Oisans Gap  Aitor Garmendia (ESP)
2000 14 H Draguignan Briançon  Santiago Botero (COL)
1993 11 1 Serre-Chevalier Isola 2000  Claudio Chiappucci (ITA)
1989 16 H Gap Briançon  Pascal Richard (SUI)
1986 17 H Gap Serre-Chevalier  Eduardo Chozas (ESP)
1976 10 1 Bourg-d'Oisans Montgenèvre  Lucien Van Impe (BEL)
1975 16 1 Barcelonnette Serre-Chevalier  Bernard Thévenet (FRA)
1973 8 1 Moûtiers Les Orres  José Manuel Fuente (ESP)
1972 13 1 Orcières-Merlette Briançon  Eddy Merckx (BEL)
1965 16 1 Gap Briançon  Joaquim Galera (ESP)
1962 18 1 Antibes/Juan-les-Pins Briançon  Federico Bahamontes (ESP)
1960 16 1 Gap Briançon  Imerio Massignan (ITA)
1958 20 1 Gap Briançon  Federico Bahamontes (ESP)
1956 17 1 Gap Turin  Valentin Huot (FRA)
1954 18 1 Grenoble Briançon  Louison Bobet (FRA)
1953 18 1 Gap Briançon  Louison Bobet (FRA)
1951 20 1 Gap Briançon  Fausto Coppi (ITA)
1950 18 1 Gap Briançon  Louison Bobet (FRA)
1949 16 1 Cannes Briançon  Fausto Coppi (ITA)
1948 13 1 Cannes Briançon  Gino Bartali (ITA)
1947 9 1 Briançon Digne  Jean Robic (FRA)
1939 15 Digne Briançon  Sylvère Maes (BEL)
1938 14 Digne Briançon  Gino Bartali (ITA)
1937 9 Briançon Digne  Julian Berrendero (ESP)
1936 9 Briançon Digne  Sylvère Maes (BEL)
1927 16 Nice Briançon  Nicolas Frantz (LUX)
1926 14 Nice Briançon  Bartolomeo Aymo (ITA)
1925 13 Nice Briançon  Bartolomeo Aymo (ITA)
1924 10 Nice Briançon  Nicolas Frantz (LUX)
1923 10 Nice Briançon  Henri Pélissier (FRA)
1922 10 Nice Briançon  Philippe Thijs (BEL)

Giro d'Italia[edit]

The Col d'Izoard was 7 times on the route of the Giro d'Italia.[9] The most famous passage over the Col was in 1949, when Coppi beat Bartali in the memorable stage from Cuneo to Pinerolo, taking the pink jersey.

Appearances in the Giro d'Italia[edit]

Year Stage Start Finish Leader at the summit
2007 12 Scalenghe Briançon  Danilo Di Luca (ITA)
2000 19 Saluzzo Briançon  Francesco Casagrande (ITA)
1996 14 Santuario di Vicoforte Briançon  Pascal Richard (SUI)
1994 20 Cuneo Les Deux Alpes  Marco Pantani (ITA)
1982 21 Cuneo Pinerolo  Lucien Van Impe (BEL)
1964 20 Cuneo Pinerolo  Franco Bitossi (ITA)
1949 17 Cuneo Pinerolo  Fausto Coppi (ITA)

See also[edit]


  1. ^ IGN map
  2. ^ a b "Col d'Izoard - 2360 metres". Grenoble Cycling. Archived from the original on 28 September 2013. Retrieved 24 September 2013.
  3. ^ Université Libre de Bruxelles
  4. ^ "Col de l'Izoard: Guillestre". www.climbbybike.com. Retrieved 21 July 2014.
  5. ^ "Col de l'Izoard: Briançon". www.climbbybike.com. Retrieved 21 July 2014.
  6. ^ "Le col d'Izoard dans le Tour de France depuis 1947" (in French). ledicodutour. Retrieved 24 July 2022.
  7. ^ "Complete list of crossings". Le Col d'Izoard. www.memoire-du-cyclisme.eu. Archived from the original on 27 September 2013. Retrieved 24 September 2013.
  8. ^ "Tour de France 2017: Chris Froome in control, Warren Barguil wins stage 18". BBC. 20 July 2017.
  9. ^ "Salite da scoprire: Col de l'Izoard" (in Italian). Sport Folks. 1 July 2017. Retrieved 24 October 2023.

External links[edit]

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