Registration for the Etape du Tour 2017 is now open, and whether you’ve already signed up or are yet to make up your mind, it’s a good idea to know what you’re getting yourself in for.

>>> Tour de France 2017 route revealed

Luckily for you, Mavic, which provides neutral service for the event, has sent out Mike Cotty and former pro Nicholas Roux to preview the route, riding the 178km course and giving out a few tips in the video above.

 

The Etape du Tour is a closed road sportive which each year covers the route of a Tour de France stage. In 2017, it will tackle stage 18 of the race between Briançon and the Col du Izoard, tackling two major ascents, the Col de Vars (9.3km at 7.4 per cent) and, of course, the Col du Izoard (14.1 km at 7.3 per cent, with the last 10 kilometre averaging a savage 9 per cent).

>>> 17 of the best international sportives to ride in 2017

Registration is currently open for the event, with as many as 15,000 riders expected to ride the event only four days before the pros take on the same roads. Over 20 per cent of those riding the event will come from the UK, and although it is a sportive, riders are given finishing times and positions, and those at the head of the field are generally former pros, who treat it very much as a race.