After a long stretch running along the northern part of france, the riders will hop on a plane and head to the far southern extreme of the country and hit the Pyrenees, the first of two series of stages in the high mountains. Stages 10-12 will be up and down, up and down, and up some more. After that punishment, the peleton will head out into the flatter regions of the Rhone Valley, a famous wine region, which is the inspiration behind the third colorway for this year's Tour de Fleece (because how can there be French-inspired colors without including wine?).
The Gamay grape is a dark purple grape used in a number of red wines, and has been cultivated since the 15th century. It is the grape used in Beaujolais nouveau, which comes largely from a region a bit further north then this year's route, but it is also used in making a local version of Malbec (my favorite red wine). More importantly, the pictures of the grapes are beautiful - black, purple, hints of red undertones...
The final colorway also includes some of the deep red tones of the wine produced from these grapes. Although the top looks quite variegated, it spins up into a fairly semisolid yarn, and is a good contrast to the brighter orange tones of House of Orange.
The last TdF colorway is inspired by one of the truly iconic climbs of the Tour de France's long history. Check back tomorrow for the final reveal!