Credit: A.S.O./Marcel Hilger

The route of the Deutschland Tour is set earlier than ever before. The course of the four stages is already known a year before the pros fight for the prestigious red jersey. After passing through Germany’s southwest at the premiere of the new Deutschland Tour and the middle of Germany last year, the tour now also visits the north (Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania) and the south (Bavaria). With its third edition since the premiere, the tour will have already seen 10 federal states.

“The Deutschland Tour connects: the north with the south and the eastern with the western federal states. This route will present Germany in all its diversity in summer 2021. From the holiday region on the Baltic Sea passing places worth seeing and low mountain ranges, such as in Thuringia, to the Erlangen-Nuremberg metropolitan region. We have a year full of anticipation ahead of us, in which the fans can already explore the pro-route on their bikes,” says Claude Rach, Managing Director of the Gesellschaft zur Förderung des Radsports.

Deutschland Tour – four stages with an open outcome
The route concept of the upcoming event will again provide exciting sport. A concept that is successful and has attracted a record number of the world’s best teams and professionals last year. From the north to the south the terrain offers a lot of variety, with climbs in the southern Harz, Thuringian Forest and Franconian Switzerland.

“The Deutschland Tour remains true to its recipe for success as a classic tour. Four exciting stages which outcome the pros will have in their own hands. Only one thing is quite certain: It will be another seconds game that will only be decided on the last few kilometers in Nuremberg,” says Fabian Wegmann, Sports Director of the Deutschland Tour.

The Deutschland Tour 2021 will take place in the second half of August running over four stages from Thursday to Sunday. The exact date will be announced by the World Cycling Federation in autumn.

Dein Ride – Fans test the professional route ahead of the pros
400 fans will test the course this week. Together with former professionals such as Marcel Kittel, Jens Voigt or Fabian Wegmann, the amateur athletes ride the original route of the Deutschland Tour 2021 from Thursday to Sunday. Another campaign with which Germany’s largest cycling festival puts the fans in the spotlight, pushing for cycling enthusiasm.

1st stage: Stralsund-Schwerin (191 kilometers, Thursday)
Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania is the host for the start of the Deutschland Tour. With the Hanseatic city of Stralsund the tour starts on the coast for the first time. On the way to the sprint classification in Rostock, the route runs through the Baltic Sea region. Part of the coastal premiere is that the elevation profile often only brings the riders to sea level on the first day. 191 flat kilometers have to be covered on the way from Western Pomerania to Mecklenburg to the state capital Schwerin. In the second part of the route, many changes of direction, narrow roads and open terrain prepare an exciting finale. The last 15 kilometers in the Schwerin city area will challenge the teams who expect a Sprint Royale near Schwerin Castle for the first stage decision.

2nd stage: Sangerhausen-Ilmenau (185 kilometers, Friday)
The second day starts in Saxony-Anhalt. Eleven years after Sangerhausen hosted the German Road Cycling Championships, the district town south of the Harz Mountains is once again the focus of professional cycling. Shortly after the start, the riders are challenged from the highest point in Kyffhäuser, the Kulpenberg. A historic moment is planned for half of the stage: the international field of the Deutschland Tour passes the Buchenwald concentration camp memorial. Shortly afterwards, Weimar, a center of Germany’s cultural heritage, is reached. Between Weimar and the stage destination in Ilmenau, the stage profile is more suited to classic riders. Constant up and down makes it harder for early breakaways and rewards late attacks. A selective final awaits the decision of the day in Ilmenau: two finish laps of 7 kilometers each have to be completed. The finish straight is slightly uphill. While a mass sprint is likely on the first day, the second stage rather awaits the arrival of a larger group.

3rd stage: Ilmenau-Erlangen (191 kilometers, Saturday)
The start of the Deutschland Tour weekend is uphill. From the start in Ilmenau it goes directly into the Thuringian Forest. In the Frauenwald district, the highest point of this year’s tour is reached at over 780 meters. The early uphill will encourage attacks, but the day will be still long. The route leads through southern Thuringia to Upper Franconia. The state border between Thuringia and Bavaria is passed three times before the Coburg region is reached. In medieval Seßlach, riders can expect historical flair with cobblestones, half-timbered houses, ramparts and city gates. The stage continues towards Central Franconia without any topographical difficulties. But the final promises excitement: the finish lap in Erlangen is 12 kilometers long and includes an ascent on the Rathsberg. Pros with hopes of the overall standings can use this to set themselves apart from the sprinters. Because the fast riders rely on the 1,000-meter-long straight to the finish line on Luitpoldstrasse.

4th stage: Erlangen-Nuremberg (160 kilometers, Sunday)
The last stage has true final status. With only 160 kilometers, but peppered with 2,000 meters of altitude, the terrain in Middle Franconia is used perfectly after the start on the market square in front of the Kunstpalais Erlangen. No less than 13 climbs in Franconian Switzerland, some with inclines of up to 20%, put a classic stamp on Sunday. Hellings, like those from the Flemish classics, with steep climbs and descents welcome the aggressive riders. But in addition to strength, they also require constant concentration and knowledge of the route. If you want to win the Deutschland Tour 2021, you have to be active on the final day. After the selection in the middle part of the stage, the final to Nuremberg is flat again. At the end of the tour in Nuremberg there are three laps of 5 kilometers each on the program. On the well-known race loop course in the old town of Nuremberg, a group will probably make the tour victory among themselves. Only those who still have power reserves on the final meters of the Deutschland Tour 2021 can hope for the red jersey of the overall winner at the finish in front of the Nuremberg Opera.

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