Imlach and Boardman's 2016 Tour predictions

Gary Imlach (left) and Chris Boardman.

Credit: ITV

We spoke to our presenters Gary Imlach and Chris Boardman before the Tour to ask for a few quickfire predictions and comments on the 2016 race.

Who do you think will win this year's Tour?

Gary: I’m tempted by form and history to say Chris Froome, but I’m going to double down on last year’s prediction that Nairo Quintana would survive a tricky first week and ride away from his rivals in the mountains. He did take time from Froome in the Alps in 2015. Unfortunately for him, he’d already conceded more time on the flat in Stage 2 than he eventually lost by in Paris.

Chris: Probably Chris Froome because he’s got a very strong team but it’s not a nailed on certainty. Quintana lost last year in the first week. If he doesn’t make the same mistake again, he’s the biggest threat.

TV schedule: When to watch Le Tour 2016 live on ITV4

Check out the schedule for our coverage of the 2016 Tour de France. This year is the seventh time ITV4 has screened daily live coverage and extended highlights of the Tour, with a total of 70 hours of live cycling to be shown during the event. It is part of ITV’s deal to show cycling’s showpiece event until 2019 at least.

Will Briton Chris Froome defend his Tour yellow jersey in 2016?

Credit: PA

UCI plan Tour bike checks for motorised doping

The International Cycling Union says it will make between 3,000 and 4,000 bike checks at the Tour de France following rumour and speculation regarding motors hidden in frames.

Nineteen-year-old Belgian rider Femke Van den Driessche became the first rider to be punished for so-called motorised doping in April when she was suspended for six years by the sport's governing body.

Femke Van den Driessche allegedly used a bike containing a motor at January's UCI Cyclo-cross World Championships in Belgium.

Credit: PA

Dusseldorf to stage Grand Depart in 2017

Dusseldorf's Lord Mayor Thomas Geisel (SPD) on a road bike accompanied by Andre Greipel.

Credit: PA

The German city of Dusseldorf will stage the 2017 Tour De France's Grand Depart, the Amaury Sport Organisation have announced.

Thirty years after the Tour last started in what was then West Germany, cyclists will return to the country for the beginning of the 104th edition of the race.

Cologne, Frankfurt and West Berlin have all been venues for the peloton's departure since the Tour's start was first taken out of France in 1954, with the 2017 race the 22nd to begin outside of French borders.

This year's race started in the Dutch city of Utrecht, 12 months after thousands of fans flocked to Leeds to see Chris Froome and company off, while the 2016 Grand Depart is in Mont-Saint-Michel in north-west France.