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Description of the Game

This is the description of the Internet Tour de France Game 2023. Compose a team of fifteen Tour de France competitors and earn points for any team member that finishes in a stage top 10 of the Tour de France 2023.

Submit your team via the web form or send the text form via e-mail to erikt(at)xs4all.nl (Erik TKS).

Your entry must be submitted before Monday July 03, 2023, 10:00 GMT (12:00 MET summertime), otherwise you cannot participate in the game.

Entry form

The deadline for submitting teams (Monday July 03, 2023. 10:00 GMT) has passed.

Competition Rules

  1. A team consists of fifteen competitors of the Tour de France 2023.

  2. The player receives points if one or more of his team members finishes within the first ten of a stage. The higher the ranking of the team member within the team, the higher the number of points:

       team member 1: 15 points    team member  9: 7 points
       team member 2: 14 points    team member 10: 6 points
       team member 3: 13 points    team member 11: 5 points
       team member 4: 12 points    team member 12: 4 points
       team member 5: 11 points    team member 13: 3 points
       team member 6: 10 points    team member 14: 2 points
       team member 7:  9 points    team member 15: 1 point
       team member 8:  8 points

  3. The player receives additional bonus points if the ranking of the ranking of a member of his team corresponds with the ranking of the team member in a stage:

       team member 1, 2 and 3:              3 bonus points
       team member 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9 and 10: 2 bonus points
       team member 11, 12, 13, 14 and 15:   0 bonus points (not possible)
    There is a scoring example following this rule list.

  4. The winner of the game is the person that collects the highest score over the stages of the Tour de France 2023 that are used in this competition. The results of the stages 1 and 2 (July 1 and 2) will not be used in this competition. In case of a tie at the end of the game, the winner will be decided by the highest stage score that has been achieved, or the second, third, etcetera highest when necessary.

  5. Anyone that owns an e-mail address can participate in the game. Only one contribution per person will be allowed. Note: possessing more than one e-mail address does not mean that you have the right to participate with more than one team.

  6. The list with team members should have been contributed via the web form or sent by e-mail to erikt(at)xs4all.nl before Monday July 03, 2023 10:00 GMT (= 12:00 MET) summertime (some minutes before the start of the third stage). List arriving later than this deadline cannot take part in this competition.

  7. You have an option for mentioning five reserve team members. If one of your team members does not start in the tour or drops out before the second stage the cyclists that follow him in the list will move one position higher and a reserve team member will enter your list. From stage 3 onwards the teams are fixed. The remaining reserve team members will not be used in later parts of the game. Dropouts from stage two or later will not change the team format.

  8. The official result of a stage is the result as published by the official Tour de France website: letour.fr. Changes in stage results which occur more than 24 hours after the finish will not be used in the game.

  9. Daily stage results (top 10), participant stage standings, and overall standings of the participants will be available on the web at http://ifarm.nl/tdf

Scoring example

Tour de France 1993
stage 19 (time trial)    team Erik TKS (Groningen, The Netherlands)
 1. T. Rominger           1. L. Jalabert         .
 2. M. Indurain           2. O. Ludwig           .
 3. Z. Jaskula            3. C. Chiappucci      13
 4. J. Bruyneel           4. M. Indurain        12
 5. G. Bugno              5. G. Bugno          11+2
 6. J. Bernard            6. W. Museeuw          .
 7. V. Ekimov             7. D. Abdoesjaparov    .
 8. P. Louviot            8. S. Roche            .
 9. C. Chiappucci         9. V. Ekimov           7
10. A. Mejia             10. P. Delgado          .
                         11. G. Fidanza          .
                         12. A. Zulle            .
                         13. E. Breukink         .
                         14. J. Van Poppel       .
                         15. M. Sciandri         .
                         points in this stage:  45

How to compose the winning team

If you want to compose a team that does well in the overall rankings, there are three things you should be aware of:

  1. A cyclist in your team receives points when he finishes in the top 10 of a stage. This means that you should select cyclists that frequently finish in stage top tens.
  2. A cyclist in the top of your team will receive more points for finishing in a stage top ten than a cyclist at the bottom of your team. This means that the top of your team should contain very reliable cyclists.
  3. The number one of your team will get bonus points when he wins a stage. This means that your number one should be someone of whom you expect stage wins. The other members of the team can get bonus points as well but stage positions other than the first one are harder to predict.

With these facts in mind we can examine the performance of the cyclists in the past years and select a team. The following tables contain cyclists sorted by the total number of stage top tens that they have obtained in the last five years (in the example we use years 1999-2003). A hyphen (-) instead of a number means that the cyclist has not participated in that year. Lets start with the top five riders:

tot aver 1999 2000 2001 2002 2003  Name
 36 7.20    9    8    7    7    5  E. Zabel
 33 6.60   10    2    9    6    6  S. O'Grady
 31 6.20    5    6    7    7    6  L. Armstrong
 22 5.50    5    5    -    7    5  R. McEwen
 15 5.00    -    4    6    -    5  J. Ullrich

These five men have been the most reliable cyclists in the past five years with respect to stage top ten finishes. Except for O'Grady in 2000 (broken collarbone after crash), they have obtained at least 4 and usually more stage top ten positions in every of the Tours they have participated in since 1999. The top five of the last five years should be the top five names on your team list. The order of them does not matter, but you should think a little bit about who to put on top of the team. Do you think that the sprinters will win many stages? Then place one of them first to earn you bonus points. Or do you think one of the gc contenders will win mountain stages and time trials? Then select him as your team captain. Now we have a team of five riders.

For the next group of riders on the team, you should try to find riders which performed well in more than one year. Many stage top tens in one year is no guarantee for a good performance in other years. For example, Moreau had 7 top ten positions in 2000 and then only 2 in 2001 and none in 2002. We are looking for cyclists which obtained at least 3 top ten positions both in 2002 and in 2003:

tot aver 1999 2000 2001 2002 2003  Name
 13 6.50    -    -    -    7    6  B. Cooke
  8 4.00    -    -    2    3    5  I. Basso
  8 4.00    -    -    0    4    4  T. Hushovd
 13 2.60    5    1    1    4    2  J. Kirsipuu
  8 1.60    0    2    1    3    2  F. Mancebo
  8 4.00    -    -    5    3    -  I. Gonzalez
  6 3.00    -    -    4    2    -  O. Sevilla
  7 1.75    0    3    2    2    -  E. Dekker

We find three such riders. We add them to the team which now contains eight riders. Probably it would have been save to include the next two in the team as well.

We select the remainder of the team list by examining the results of the prologue and stage 1, which do not take part in the game. Cyclists which finished in one of these top tens are most likely in good shape and they might perform well in the rest of the race. We compile a table from these two stage top tens which contains the information of all riders that have not already been included in our team:

tot aver 1999 2000 2001 2002 2003  Name
  0 0.00    -    -    -    -    -  F. Cancellara (P:1)
  0 0.00    -    -    0    -    -  J.I. Gutierrez (P:3)
  3 1.00    -    -    2    1    0* B. McGee (P:4)
  0 0.00    -    -    -    -    -  O. Pereiro (P:6)
  5 1.00    2    1    2    0    0  J. Voigt (P:7)
 13 2.60    1**  7    2*   0    3  C. Moreau (P:8)
  2 0.50    0    0    1    1    -  B. Julich (P:9)
  8 1.60    6*   1    0    0    1  G. Hincapie (P:10)
 13 2.60    5*   1    1*   4    2* J. Kirsipuu (1:1)
  0 0.00    -    -    -    0    -  D. Hondo (1:4)
  0 0.00    -    0    -    -    0  J. Nazon (1:5)
  0 0.00    -    -    -    -    -  K. Arvesen (1:7)
  3 3.00    -    -    6    -    3* A. Petacchi (1:8)
  0 0.00    -    -    -    -    -  A. Davis (1:10)

A star (*) in a particular column means that the rider was among the top ten of the prologue or stage 1 of that year. It is not easy to select the best cyclists from this list. For some of these riders, we have no previous data. They might be talented riders that will perform well in the race but in order to know that, we need more information.

Petacchi seems to be the most interesting of the group: at least three top ten positions in every year he took part. Kirsipuu could also be a good choice: a total of eight top ten positions in the three years he was among the best ten in the first stage. The data on Moreau is confusing: a total of 10 top ten positions when he was outside of the prologue top ten and only 3 when he started the Tour de France with a prologue top ten spot. We select these three riders and our team grows to eleven.

For the remainder of the list we just use the rest of the top ten of stage 1 of 2004: Hondo, Nazon, Arvesen and Davis. This finishes the team. Here is an example order: Armstrong, Zabel, McEwen, Ullrich, O'Grady, Cooke, Hushovd, Basso, Petacchi, Kirsipuu, Moreau, Hondo, Nazon, Arvesen and Davis. Armstrong is selected as team captain, the others of the top five are sorted by their lowest year score, just like the next two groups of three cyclists. The last four have been sorted by their positions in stage 1.

Of course there is no guarantee that a team constructed like this will win the game. So feel free to omit riders from the team that you do not have confidence in and replace them by riders from which you expect a lot. Good luck!

Cyclist list Tour de France 2023

You can take a look at a list of teams which contains information about the cyclists that participate in the Tour.

You can also take a look at the optimal team for the game edition of 2022. Just select "Previous" on that page to examine optimal teams for earlier editions of the game. Note that some of the riders in those teams might not start in 2023.

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Last update: July 03, 2023. erikt(at)xs4all.nl