Utrecht, Netherlands was home to the 13.8 km Stage 1 time trial, where Alberto Contador began his bid for the Giro-Tour double.
An easy start to the Tour would not be in the cards with wrecks and cross winds haunting the peloton from the get-go.
A grisly wreck took out a large portion of the peloton on Stage 3. Yellow jersey holder Fabian Cancellara managed to finish the stage with broken vertebrae, but would not be starting Stage 4.
The cobbles on Stage 4 didn’t prove to be the undoing of many GC hitters thanks to the dry conditions this time.
Andre Greipel started winning early and kept up the momentum all the way until the finish in Paris.
Another yellow jersey hits the deck when Tony Martin falls within sight of the finish. A broken collarbone spelled the end of his time in yellow and at the Tour.
Stage 7 would prove to be a much needed victory for Mark Cavendish, but it would be his only success of the race.
Hot, hot weather impacted the race in the first two weeks, keeping the bottle-fetchers busy throughout the stages.
BMC pulled off a big win in the Stage 9 TTT, beating Sky by just 1 second and keeping Tejay van Garderen in with a shot of the podium come Paris. Unfortunately, Tejay never made it to Paris.
After a stellar first week of racing by Chris Froome and his Sky team, the first real mountain day belonged to the Brit.
Tommy Voeckler isn’t quite the threat that he was earlier in his career, but not from lack of trying. Voeckler and many of his Europcar teammates animated the breakaways in the second and third weeks.
A few days in the Pyrenees sorted out the GC riders quickly.
A painful near miss by Peter Sagan was pure jubilance for BMC’s Greg Van Avermaet on Stage 13.
Stephen Cummings made history for his MTN-Qhubeka team on Stage 14. As the first African team to ever ride in the Tour de France, Cummings earned them a spectacular stage win with a last-minute come-from-behind effort.
Even on the ‘sprinter’ stages there were few truly flat roads to be found.
Yes, he was here too.
Without sprinter Marcel Kittel in the ranks, Giant-Alpecin had to look to others for Tour success. German Simon Geschke came up big with his mountain top win aboard the new Giant TCR Advanced SL.
The Stage 18 climb up Lacets de Montvernier proved to be the most spectacular looking climb of the Tour and one that made its way onto many cyclist’s bucket list.
Down but not out, defending champion Vincenzo Nibali saved his pride by taking Stage 19 and helped seal up 5th overall.
‘Dutch Corner’ on Alpe d’Huez is known as the most raucous part of the climb, and it once again lived up to its name. Much to the pleasure of the French fans, Froome suffered and Thibaut Pinot was victorious on the final day before Paris.
And 21 stages later, Chris Froome nabbed his second Tour title along with the mountain jersey, Sagan earned the green jersey once again, and Quintana took home the young riders jersey and second overall.