28 June 2013

How to Watch the Tour de France

Time to watch and read about the Tour de France in 2013

Have you been curious how to watch the Tour this year? 

The Tour de France begins tomorrow, Saturday June 29 through Sunday July 21, 2013. Time to watch the competition, scenery and tradition that is that Tour de France. Find access to watching the Tour de France in a way which best suits you: TV, online, apps, or facebook. Unfortunately if you are an American citizen and want to watch the race live you are going to have to pay NBC (cable TV, online or app),

If you cannot watch the race live, then read about the results and stories or watch video clips to keep up on results. See resources listed under Live Text updates, Video Libraries, Social Media, and Reading below.

But the main point is this - GO RIDE YOUR OWN BIKE. The Tour de France is meant to inspire us cyclists. There will be no sacrificing ride time by sitting around watching le Tour. That is why I am here to save you time by focusing your attention on exactly where to watch or find your news on the race. 


Europe - TV Schedule for the 2013 Tour de France 
See the Eurosport TV Schedule.

See the France TV 3 TV Schedule

See the itv Tour de France TV schedule and itv website pages for the race.

Or find other broadcast TV schedules at the bottom of Steephill.TV page for Sporza, Raj, France TV 2, iTv 4, rtve, rtv, espn international, tsn2, rds, j sports, super sport, Rai Sport 2, Rai 3, nos, rtbf, rtl, sf zwei, 2 sportin, rmc.

United States - TV Schedule for the 2013 Tour de France 

NBC Sports Network Live (and taped) TV coverage schedule (cable) (EDT times: New York). Commentating by Phil Liggett and Paul Sherwen.
Saturday, June 29 - Tour de France, Stage 1: Porto-Vecchio to Bastia, 7:30 a.m., NBCSN (LIVE)
Sunday, June 30 - Tour de France, Stage 2: Bastia to Ajaccio, 7:30 a.m., NBCSN (LIVE)
Tour de France, Stage 2: Bastia to Ajaccio, 12:30 p.m., NBC (Re-air)
Monday, July 1 - Tour de France, Stage 3: Ajaccio to Calvi, 6:30 a.m., NBCSN (LIVE)
Tuesday, July 2 - Tour de France, Stage 4: Nice to Nice, 9 a.m., NBCSN (LIVE)
Wednesday, July 3 - Tour de France, Stage 5: Cagnes-sur-Mer to Marseille, 8 a.m., NBCSN (LIVE)
Thursday, July 4 - Tour de France, Stage 6: Aix-en-Provence to Montpellier, 8 a.m., NBCSN (LIVE)
Friday, July 5 - Tour de France, Stage 7: Montepellier to Albi, 8 a.m., NBCSN (LIVE)
Saturday, July 6 - Tour de France, Stage 8: Castres to Ax 3 Domaines, 8 a.m., NBC (LIVE)
Sunday, July 7 - Tour de France, Stage 9: Saint-Girons to Bagnères-de-Bigorre, 6:30 a.m., NBCSN (LIVE)
Monday, July 8 - Tour de France Rest Day, 8 a.m., NBCSN
Tuesday, July 9 - Tour de France, Stage 10: Saint-Gildas-des-Bois to Sain-Malo, 8 a.m., NBCSN (LIVE)
Wednesday, July 10 - Tour de France, Stage 11: Avranches to Mont-Saint-Michel, 8 a.m., NBCSN (LIVE)
Thursday, July 11 - Tour de France, Stage 12: Fougères to Tours, 8 a.m., NBCSN (LIVE)
Friday, July 12 - Tour de France, Stage 13: Tours to Saint-Amand-Montrond, 8 a.m., NBCSN (LIVE)
Saturday, July 13 - Tour de France, Stage 14: Saint-Pourçain-sur-Sioule to Lyon, 8 a.m., NBCSN (LIVE)
Sunday, July 14 - Tour de France, Stage 15: Givors to Mont Ventoux, 8 a.m., NBCSN (LIVE)
Monday, July 15 - Tour de France Rest Day Show, 8 a.m., NBCSN
Tuesday, July 16 - Tour de France, Stage 16: Vaison-la-Romaine to Gap, 8 a.m., NBCSN (LIVE)
Wednesday, July 17 - Tour de France, Stage 17: Embrun to Chorges, 8 a.m., NBCSN (LIVE)
Thursday, July 18 - Tour de France, Stage 18: Gap to Alpe-d'Huez, 6 a.m., NBCSN (LIVE)
Friday, July 19 - Tour de France, Stage 19: Bourg-d'Oisans to Le Grand-Bornand, 6 a.m., NBCSN (LIVE)
Saturday, July 20 - Tour de France, Stage 20: Annecy to Annecy-Semonz, 7:30 a.m., NBCSN (LIVE)
Sunday, July 21 - Tour de France, Stage 21: Versailles to Paris Champs Élysées, 11:30 p.m., NBCSN (LIVE)
Sunday, July 28 - Tour de France Recap Show, 12:30 p.m., NBC

Live Online

Online Live Video Coverage - 2013 Tour de France
Eurosport Player Paid fee, find a promotional discount through Bike Radar, code TDF2013 (UK) or TDF2013-DEIR (Ireland) and you'll get 12 months subscription for the price of 11 (£32.88/€36.57). 280 hours of cycling, including 87 hours of live coverage. Not available for US citizens.

Online NBC TDF Live Tracking: Paid full access to Live and recorded video and features in the U.S. All Access $29.99 for entire tour, $4.99 for 1 Stage/1-Day Access. Must register and pay for service. Poorly pixeled image quality depending on laptop or desktop. (registration problem was corrected). (I could not find a "promotional code" being offered anywhere). Don't use Firefox with the site - Safari or Chrome okay. NBC coverage and commentary. Also you will be able to watch delayed tape on demand after the stage is complete.

Live Video at Cycling Central (SBS.com) in Australia only, not in the U.S. They also have a Tour de France app.

Live Video and taped interviews at itv.com Tour de France in Britain, not in the U.S. If you live in the UK, you can watch the Broom Wagon cleaning up on course, Live on itv during the stage at: Tour de France Broom Wagon Live. They also have a Tour de France app.

Steephill.TV Update: Free Eurosport links are no longer being provided in the USA via Steephill.
Steephill.TV has always been an invaluable resource for cycling fans. I visit Steve's site maybe 3 to 6 times a day looking for historic and current details. See the full list and links to live video or TV schedules at Steephill.TV in other countries around the world (scroll to the bottom of the page) Steephill.tv/tour-de-france/. Plus their links to news and video.
*Warning Live links: you may run the risk of placing malware on your HD if you click to download the software that blocks these live link screens, do not, it is not necessary, you can wait and hit the small x to get out of those ads. Beware. Sites for free viewing exist on the internet.

Race News and Daily Predictions Video

My favorite is back!! Tour Talk with Frankie Andreu and James Startt for Bicycling. This very entertaining and accurate race strategy preview is back for another year. Set in a backdrop fitting for each day's stage, these two banter and make you feel like you are there with them in France.

Behind the Scenes with the Teams

Orica GreenEDGE offers their quick 3 minute videos: Backstage Pass.

Also see team photos albums and videos shared on Facebook: List of team facebook pages.

Videos Libraries

A good source of highlight videos to catch up on any live race viewing you may have missed. Scan for the clips of the final kilometers or key interviews. These will save you tons of time which you may then put towards riding your own bike.

Very good Free pre-recorded videos for view at Global Cycling Network

Lots of Free daily pre-recorded videos added in the right column at CyclingFans.comhttp://cyclingfans.com/. Including interviews, interest stories, and race highlights.

More prerecorded Free videos highlights available at Steephill.tv/tour-de-france, also news links from the 4 or so standard cycling news sources. I especially appreciate the links to race recaps of the last 3-5km of the race. This is a good site to short cut to the news you may have missed.

Library of video interviews and features: Bicycling

Live Text Updates

I sometimes read live text updates to clarify who is in the breakaway or understand what is happening on the entire route when the TV cameras are focused only on the breakaway. They offer in the moment updates from the leaders to the team cars, plus additional race insights.

Official Live ASO Ticker by LeTour

Live blogging today by Michael O'Reilly at the Sydney Morning Herald. It goes live as the TV coverage does, on smh.com.au, theage.com.au and brisbanetimes.com.au home pages. Light-hearted, entertaining and informed. Free

Team SKY offer a full media presentation on the website with videos & photos, news and LIVE coverage. Free

CyclingNews Live Text Updates (online, and app below) Free 

Brian Holcombe et al, at VeloNews, is also doing Free Live Text Coverage of every stage of the TDF. Check their Facebook page daily for the link to Live Coverage, it is hard to find on their website.

Live Update Guy Charles Pelkey, Free but he asks for donations (frequently) to cover costs and has a small following of regulars who chime in. A bit of a distraction.


Apps can be a good if you are out on the road. They are a good source to check on time gaps and which riders are in the breakaway, but they can lag behind real race updates. 

Official le Tour app powered by Skoda app, Paid, read more and download.

CyclingNews Tour Tracker - a Free App, read more at that link and download to your device. This is live text updates, no video available on this app.
Social Media


I am not a big fan of reading Twitter during the race, it just takes up time and distracts from watching the real race. I would much rather get timely accurate news from real news sites. I do like to look through Twitter before and after a stage for tweets directly from the riders or team staff rather than the same 12 Twitter personalities. But this can be a huge suck on your time, and again, you need to be out riding your bike!

If you must, then focus in on the best: @MarkCavendish  @PhilippeGilbert  @MattRabin  @letour   @OnevePhoto  ‏@TDWsport  @DanWouri  @albertocontador  @bikeworldnews  @theRaceRadio  and that is about all you need along with your few favorites. Here is a public list of all teams and riders at the 2013 Tour de France. Easily select the teams and riders to follow from this list.


A great place to see photos and read other interest stories. See a list I created of the teams' FB pages at: 2013 Pro Teams, and Social Media links (Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, websites).

Also my Pedal Dancer Facebook page.



There are several riders competing in the Tour who will be writing about their experience at the Tour de France.

Riders Richie Porte and John Degenkolb will be blogging for CyclingNews.com during the Tour de France.

Andrew Talansky will be journaling for VeloNews during the Tour de France

Jens Voigt writes his Hardly Serious column occasionally for Bicycling.com.

Ted King writes in his own blog I am Ted King, but also King Me for Bicycling.com

Training Peaks gives a review of How to Analyze a Tour de France Power File


Cycling News
Velo News
Pez Cycling

Gear Reveiws

Bike Radar


Cycling Tips 
Twisted Spoke

Pedal Dancer ! - Time for self promotion, I am after all a cycling blog on the Tour de France and France and Colorado, plus more. I will be writing almost daily on interest topics, travel, race result ponderings, sharing photos or news and whatever else catches my interest between 6:00-9:30 a.m.

Pedal Dancer recommended reading:

Preview of the centenary edition of 'La Grande Boucle', By Team SKY
Climbs in the 2013 Tour de France, By Climb By Bike
Tour de France - 21 Brief Stage Previews, By The Cycle Seen
Tour de France 2013: The race preview, By CyclingNews standard format
Why the 100th Tour Will Upstage the 2003 Centennial, By Wilcockson/Sunada
Tour de France: five classic mountain climbs By Giles Belbin
Five key stages of the 2013 Tour de France, By Tom Fish
Froome and co. perfectly prepared for the Tour, By Tim Kerrison for Team SKY
Tour de France 2013: Alberto Contador has the experience to rival tyros, By The Gaurdian
Tour de France 2013: team leader special – part I, By Tim Renowden
Tour de France 2013: team leader special (part II), By Tim Renowden
Tour de France 2013: team leader special (part III), By Tim Renowden

Fans and Cyclists

Dave Roscoe is a cyclist who is out riding every stage of the 2013 Tour de France to raise money for his cause. He is part of the Tour de Force group of cyclists riding all of the stages one week prior to the pros. Dave is posting on his facebook page as he pedals the route.

I like following the Bike Tour Companies or cyclists who live in France on Facebook as they bring their clients or themselves through France and live the tour is real life. In Situ Travel, Thomson Bike Tours, VeloClassic, Bikestyle, Velo Peloton, Cycling Languedoc.

Also I just joined the band wagon and started placing my blog posts on Facebook in May, so give me a follow since I am NEW and my Mother plus a few friends are following at this point: Pedal Dancer facebook page

My photos of some of the Media from the 2012 Tour de France!  click any image to enlarge

Photographers at the 2012 Tour de France.  Photo © by Karen at Pedal Dancer®
Everything is news at the Tour de France.  Photo © by Karen at Pedal Dancer®
James Startt (the big kid) waiting to interview the Maillot Jaune outside the team bus.  Photo © by Karen at Pedal Dancer®
Mobile Media Central at the Tour de France, where TV announcers hide inside these portable trailers.  Photo © by Karen at Pedal Dancer®
And nearby leading Photographers for the Tour de France gather.  Photo © by Karen at Pedal Dancer®
Where TV cameramen loom overhead.  Photo © by Karen at Pedal Dancer®
And other journalists and photographers jam into position at the finish line.  Photo © by Karen at Pedal Dancer®
Cyclists (here Rui Costa) are interviewed immediately after a tough stage.  Photo © by Karen at Pedal Dancer®
And before they barely have time to dress and eat (here Sylvain Chavanel). Photo © by Karen at Pedal Dancer®
Camera TVs are perched high on mountain tops.  Photo © by Karen at Pedal Dancer®
And moto cameramen chace after any stage leader (Here Alejandro Valverde).  Photo © by Karen at Pedal Dancer®
And especially after the yellow jersey (here Bradley Wiggins).  Photo © by Karen at Pedal Dancer®
But in the end, the only opinion that really matters is what the fans thought of the race!  Photo © by Karen at Pedal Dancer®
And that the Tour de France inspired you to get out and ride your own bike!  Photo © by Karen at Pedal Dancer®
How will I be watching the Tour de France in 2013?

NBC Live tracking (on my second desktop screen)
VeloNews Live Text Updates
CyclingNews Tour Tracker iphone app text updates
Bike Radar Fantasy Team Tour de France
Facebook pages
Reading the individual rider columns
Scanning my google reader (homepage) for interesting title lines from all those news and blog sources listed above.