As Europe’s heat wave melts roads, Tour de France races into an uncertain future


Thanks for posting the link. Feel like the cycling press and TDF organizers want to ignore the elephant in the room.


I know this is not really the point of the article but on the specific subject of “melting roads”, there are ways to build roads that don’t start melting at higher temperatures. Most places suggested to 40 to 45°C degrees on a regular basis have perfectly fine roads.


For sure, there are places with much higher average temps than France where the roads don’t melt. However, those places that have higher average day time temps also use an asphalt with a different blend of asphalt binder meant to deal with higher average daily temps.

Since France really hasn’t dealt with these high temps very often they use a different asphalt binder, one that can melt at higher temps but probably does quite well based on historical climate data. I am sure the French Transportation engineers know this but it will take a very long time to repave all the roads with an asphalt more suitable for higher temps.

Agreed. I know the profits from the broadcasting of the race at 5pm is most lucrative but I feel likes it gonna take a rider-related heat death for them to move the start times back to something like 9am instead of 12-1pm. I really hope it doesn’t come to that.

1 Like

Couple of hot days and this is the end of the Tour? WTF?


France will have to adapt anyway.

When we’re faced with severe heat, storms, and fires, people are being displaced en masse by rising sea levels, and food becomes scarce because of increasingly permanent droughts, I guess I’ll miss a bike race, but it’s probably not going to be my main concern.

1 Like

‘couple of hot days’? you being obtuse on purpose?

How often have you been to France in summer?

Surely the Vuelta is normally hotter than any TdF?

so what are you saying now, that because the place typically get’s hot that these more extreme and increasingly common weather patterns (that are happening the world over) don’t indicate a disturbing as fk shift?
we’re on the precipice of very nasty and widespread changes that are just kicking into gear because we’ve treated the biosphere of this beautiful planet worse than shit, and there’s no let up in sight.


I think what @Nikolai meant is that having more occurences of these high temperatures do not mean that every july we will get +40॰C every TDF like clockwork. For example 10 days ago temperature in Paris went from 38 to 22 degrees and rain in 1 day. Yesterday it was only 20॰C at my parent’s place in France which was kind of a shock to them after spending a week at my home in south of Spain.

For what its worth we could even get snow next year in the Alps during TDF. AVG temperature will definitely be higher and weather will be less and less predictable but the days of a crappy wet TDF is not over yet and UCI has an extreme weather protocol that could be adapted/enforced so that some stages are cancelled or shortened when conditions are deemed too difficults.

And has @Bernie said, the cancellation of a TDF stage, the whole race or even the whole calendar is pretty much the least of our concerns compared to the challenge we are facing right now and will be in the upcoming years and decades.


No, I’m not saying anything, just asked you a question. What I’ll say though is this: smash your TV and stop reading the news. You will a) feel happier (or even just happy) and b) stop being paranoid about Tour de France not reaching Paris next time the weather gets a little warmer than usual (or colder as is sometimes the case in other places around Europe, eg Italy).

1 Like

Can’t argue with that.

Given the the worsening state of our roads globally, I think most of them won’t be repaved anyway. And we have more than a million kms of existing roads so…

Best option would be to close a good chunk of those to motorised traffic and have them available to walkers and cyclists only. Would limit degradation, CO2 emissions and favor use of bicycles. But I don’t expect it to ever happen.