The 2015 Tour was announced, and although it has a brutal series of Alpine finishes, it's a relatively short one. The total distance is only 3344 km, historically low, although this distance falls right on an exponentially decaying schedule I fit to the distances from 1945 to 2010. Here's the plot:
I like long Tours as I find them more epic. The "epic" aspect doesn't show up well on television, but I have limited exposure to the television coverage anyway. However, I appreciate the finishes more if the riders have worked harder to get there. Modern racing has, however, to a large degree neutralized long stages. There's a constant temptation to shorten the routes and focus more on providing novel aspects each day to get people to watch Eurosport.
Maybe I'll go to watch some of the race next year. The concentration of Alpine stages facilitates this.