Frequently Asked Questions
- How to register?
The ‘Early Bird’ opens at 6pm on Wednesday 24th May. The Early Bird will remain open until 6pm on Monday 24th July, or until sold-out.
Full registrations fees apply from 6:01pm on the 24th July onwards.
- How much is registration?
Early Bird Registration Fees are:
Race (individual): $295
Ride (Individual): $265
Race Team or Groups (minimum 9 riders): $285 per rider
Ride Team or Groups (minimum 9 riders): $255 per rider
All prices include GST. Booking fees will apply.
- What is included in the entry fee?
What is included in the registration fee?
- Race or Ride registration
- Fully closed roads
- Tour de France professional race conditions
- Backpack drop at the Start and collection at the Finish
- SkiTube Train Pass: The SkiTube is a train that runs every 20 minutes (only on Saturday) between the Start at Bullocks Flat, Crackenback and the Race Finish at Perisher.
- Timed Race and Ride
- On route support teams including medical and mechanical
- Four Food Zones with food, water, toilets, medical and mechanical support and transport for riders and bikes for those who wish to stop riding
- Two Drink Zones
- Timed 350m Sprint Section in Berridale
- Timed Col de Beloka King of the Mountain section for the Ride
- Two timed King of the Mountain sections (Col de Beloka and Col de Kosciuszko) for the Race
- BBQ at the Race and Ride Finishes
- Shuttles for riders and bikes between Jindabyne and the Start and visa versa
- Official L’Étape Australia Riders Tee Shirt
- Official L’Étape Australia backpack
- Race and Ride Finishers medal
- What is the difference between The Race and The Ride?
The L’Étape Australia Race is the ultimate cycling challenge, with a 157km mountainous route based on a similar format to a genuine Tour de France stage.
For those who wish to immerse themselves in the atmosphere and experience of L’Étape without the added pressure of the final climb, the Ride is still a testing 126km course.
- What is the total Elevation Gain for each route?
The Race: 2,727m
The Ride: 1,700m
- Am I able to switch registration between The Race and The Ride after I have received my confirmation?
Riders will be not be able to change their course selection once they have registered. If participants of the Race are unable to complete the full race course, they are able to cross the Ride finish line however their finish time will not be recorded as an official time for either the Race or the Ride and they will not receive a partial refund of fees for completing the shorter course.
- Does the registration fee cover personal insurance?
No, personal accident insurance is not included in the L’Étape Australia registration fee.
All participants in L’Étape Australia are advised to take out personal accident insurance suitable for competing in a race such as L’Étape Australia. This insurance is optional but highly recommended.
- Can teams register for L’Étape Australia?
Absolutely. Teams are made up of a minimum of nine riders or you can enter a Group of more than ten, there is no maximum number to a group. The average of the first three riders will be the competitive measure of the team and group times. All members of the team or group must be registered for the same course. Please note that all Team and Group Names will be subject to approval.
The difference between a Team and a Group, apart from the number of riders, is more to do with the method of registering and the ASO’s registration system than anything on Race day.
- How do I register my team of nine riders for L’Étape Australia?
If you are entering a team of nine, your Team Captain will need to register first and pay for the team entry. Once the Team Captain has successfully registered the team, he will be given eight registration codes to distribute to each team member. Each team member will then need to use this code to enter the registration process and complete their personal details. Every team member must do this within two weeks of registration.
- How do I register my team for L’Étape Australia if we have more than nine riders?
If you have a team of more than nine riders we call it a ‘group’ rather than a team. This is because the ASO in France does not cater for teams larger than nine, but we in Australia wish to encourage larger teams. The only difference between a team and a group, other than the number of riders, is the method of registering. After that there is no difference.
For Groups larger than nine riders, the Team Leader will need to follow the link on the Lateral Events website to register and pay for the group to secure the group’s entry. The L’Étape Australia office will then contact the group Leader with an allocation of codes for each group member registered. Each group member will then need to register with their individual code and complete all personal details. Every group member must do this within two weeks of the group’s registration.
- What if I have changed my mind or cannot ride on the day, can I receive a refund?
All registrations are non-refundable and non-transferable. However, we will always transfer a registration to the following year if a rider is injured or unwell and provides a medical certificate.
- Is there a minimum age requirement to register?
There is no maximum age restriction, however riders must be over the age of 15 on the day of the race, and any riders under the age of 18 will have to provide written proof of parental consent and be accompanied by an adult on the course.
- How do I prepare to take on L’Étape Australia?
Once registered, riders will receive online training, nutritional and mechanical preparation information and advice from pro riders and experts in the relevant fields in the lead up to L’Étape.
- What types of bikes are allowed on L’Étape Australia?
Riders are able to choose from a selection of bikes including road bikes, mountain bikes, city bikes, cross bikes and hybrid bikes (electric, recumbents, disc wheels, tri or aero bars are not permitted). Straight handlebars and disc brakes are permitted.
Handbikes are permitted when required due to a disability. Tandems are only permitted for vision impaired riders (only the vision impaired riders will be required to register).
Please ensure, for the safety of all riders that bikes are well maintained throughout the course.
- Is a helmet compulsory?
Yes, it is compulsory to wear a helmet that complies with Australian Standard AS/NZ2063. Helmets must be worn (with the chin strap fastened) throughout the entire route. Any participant without a helmet will be disqualified.
- Do I need to carry photo identification during L’Étape?
We request that all riders carry photo indication at all times.
- What should I bring with me on the Race or Ride?
There will be Feeding and Drinking Zones to supply riders with nutrition, water and other necessities, however to ensure all riders are prepared we suggest packing the below list of items:
- Helmet *
- Photo identification *
- Water vessel *
- Additional food and / or sports nutrition
- Spare clothing for warmth or rain protection
- Bike equipment including: a puncture repair kit, spare inner tubes and an air pump
- Mobile phone (don’t forget to ensure it is fully charged prior to the start)
Items marked with * are compulsory
- Is there mechanical support available for my bike before the event?
On Friday 1st December, mechanical support will be available in the L’Étape Village for riders to check their bike if needed. There will also be mechanical support available at the Start Line. Both areas of support will be available on a first come, first serve basis.
Mechanical support will also be available throughout the race – both on the course and at all Feeding Zones.
- What are the expected weather conditions for the ride?
According to monthly averages, the peaks are likely to range from a mean minimum temp of 3.8°C (38.84°F) to a mean maximum of 15.9°C (60.62°F), with larger sections of the course likely to range from a mean minimum temp of 9°C (48.2°F) to a mean maximum of 25.1°C (77.18°F) . Weather in alpine regions is unpredictable and holds the potential for rapid changes in conditions. Riders will need to be prepared for all weather conditions on the day. Riders are encouraged to consult www.bom.gov.au for forecasts in the area prior to the event.
- What happens if the event is called off due to the weather?
In the case of extreme weather or a natural disaster, the Management Team in consultation with emergency agencies will determine if the event will be cancelled or modified. Riders will be notified prior to the start of the event.
- Will there be a safety and event briefing?
A series of twenty minute safety briefings will be held at the L’Étape Australia Village precinct on Friday 1st December at 11am, 1pm, 3pm, 5pm, 7pm and 9pm.
The safety briefings will cover the start, the route, what to look out for, how to move around, etiquette and all aspects of the Race and the Ride to ensure the day is enjoyable and safe.
Start / Finish
- Where and when do I collect my Registration Pack?
Pre-event check-in will be available in the Snowy Mountain L’Étape Australia Village on Friday 1st December, between 10am and 10pm. All riders must bring their confirmation email and photo identification to pick up their Registration Pack.
Check-in can only be completed by the registered rider, it cannot be collected by a third party.
- How do I get to the Start Line?
Access to the start on Saturday 2nd December differs depending on where you are staying. There is ample free parking at the Start. We advise riders staying outside Perisher not to park their cars in Perisher before the Race, as the roads will remain closed until the last rider has crossed the finish line. Parking at the start at Bullocks Flat and taking the Skitube train from Perisher to Bullocks Flat is a better option. There were tail-backs and delays getting to the Start in 2016 but this will be mitigated by much better traffic and parking management in 2017.
Jindabyne and surrounds
To get to the Race and Ride Start at Bullocks Flat/Crackenback on Saturday morning, you will need to either drive or take a shuttle (with vans for bikes provided) to arrive at the Start before 06:00am. Please note the Alpine Way will be closed to all but shuttle buses.
The police do not want to have cyclists riding along the race route prior to the start and have taken preventative measures to ensure that this does not occur. Riders will not be able to ride to the Start as there will be a road block at the corner of Alpine Way and Kosciusko Road. This is to avoid delays or event cancellation due to an accident by riders riding to the Start which has happened at similar events in Europe.
Those who compete in the Race will finish at Perisher and can take the Skitube train (with their bikes) back to the Start to locate their parked vehicles (there are 3,000 car parking spots). Alternatively, riders can take a shuttle to the Village in Jindabyne.
The road from Thredbo to the Start will be closed to vehicles (except shuttle buses) unless the driver can show a bib to the traffic controllers. Riders can drive or ride to the Start by showing their bibs to the traffic controllers.
Note that entering Thredbo incurs a National Parks Entry Fee of $17 per vehicle (but not for bikes).
On Saturday 2nd December 2017, the SkiTube train will start operations from Perisher to Bullocks Flat, Crackenback, from 05:45 through to the last train at 17:42.
The SkiTube train will start operations from Bullocks Flat, Crackenback to Perisher from 08:30 through to 17:30.
Trains will run at twenty minute intervals from 13:30 – 16:12 and half-hourly intervals before and after those times.
The train is designed to carry skiers and boarders up and down the mountain so there is adequate space for bikes as well as people. The train takes approximately 20 minutes
Please note that if cars are parked at Perisher on Friday night they will be marooned by the closed roads on Saturday until the road opens again at the very end of the day. Note that entering Perisher incurs a National Parks Entry Fee of $17 per vehicle (but not for bikes).
Regular free shuttle buses (and vans for bikes) will be provided for riders between Jindabyne and the Start at Bullocks Flat, Crackenback in the morning and return in the afternoon. Start and finish times will be available in October.
It will be possible to pre-book shuttles online from Jindabyne to the Start before the Race; Riders will be sent booking links in October.
- Shuttle Busses
Regular free event shuttle buses (and vans for bikes) will be provided for riders between Jindabyne and the Start at Bullocks Flat/Crackenback and via versa.
The first buses will leave Jindabyne at 04:30, 04:45, 05:00 and 05:15 on Saturday morning and will remain on rotation until the last bus leaves Jindabyne at 17:00 and leaves Bullocks Flat/Crackenback at 18:00.
It will be possible to pre-book shuttles online from Jindabyne to the Start before the Race; Riders will be sent booking links in October. Seats not pre-booked will be available on a first-come-first-service, and buses will leave when full.
The buses are for riders with bibs only, not for members of the public or spectators.
- What time do I have to be at the Start Line?
Please refer to the sections on getting to the Start Line to ensure you allow enough time to get the Start Line
- How will my start position be determined?
During registration, participants will answer questions based around expected speed for the course to determine the rider’s starting stage. For that reason, it is essential that all the answers are accurate, to avoid the misplacing of a rider.
If riders are unsure of their expected average speed, we would suggest finding a route similar to L’Étape Australia in difficulty and record the ride on Strava (or a similar app or device) that records performance. This will determine the average speed time for that route, that riders can use as an indicator of their expected average speed.
- Will there be a way to transport spare clothing from the start?
Yes. Each rider will be given an Official L’Étape Australia Backpack as part of their Registration Pack, along with an ID tag for their Backpack ready to be attached. Backpacks can be left at the Start Line and will be transported to the Perisher Finish Line (for Race competitors) and the L’Étape Village (for Ride competitors).
Any Race competitors that do not make it to the finish line, their Backpacks will be brought to the L’Étape Village at 4.30pm for collection. All bags must be collected from the LÉtape Village collection point by 6pm on the event day.
We advise riders not to leave anything expensive or valuable in their Backpacks, as L’Étape Australia does not take responsibility for any losses.
- Are the both courses timed?
Yes, both courses are timed. All riders will be given a number for their bike in their Registration Packs, this will have a timing chip attached and must be secured to the bike. This will record the time of the rider as they cross the Start Line, check points throughout the route and the Finish Line to provide accurate time.
Check point times for each rider will be available live for supporters to check on the L’Étape Australia website. Final times will be published on the L’Étape Australia website following the event.
- Is the road closed to traffic during the event?
As for the professional riders in the Tour de France, the road will be closed to general motor vehicle traffic throughout the entire event. A time limit is set to ensure the road opens again at a specific time and this is outlined in the Time Schedule that will be released closer to the event. After this time, the road will be open to traffic once again.
- What is the Time Schedule?
The Time Schedule helps plan the times at which the road is closed, when riders will be eliminated and when the roads reopen. Eliminations are based on a defined race time for each area through which the race passes. These times are negotiated with L’Étape Australia, the council, the police and the emergency services. Strict compliance with the Time Schedule is essential if we want to continue to enjoy a road which is entirely closed to traffic in the future.
The entire route will be closed to all non-event related vehicles. Roads will re-open progressively on a time schedule which allows riders who ride at an average of 18km per hour for the Ride or 19km per hour for the Race to complete the route.
The Time Schedule will be published in the Count Down document (September) and Riders Guide (November) and this website.
- How will I know if I am eliminated from L'Étape Australia?
The Time Schedule Vehicle will follow the precise Time Schedule on the course. Any participant who is overtaken by this vehicle (which features a timer) at any point during the race, will be declared “Hors-Course” (out of the race).
- What happens if I am eliminated?
If a rider is eliminated, they will be asked to take a detour or to go to the pick-up areas where a bus and truck will take the rider and their bike to the L’Étape Village.
Bikes will be loaded onto trucks and returned to riders to the L’Étape Village upon presentation of their race numbers.
- Are there rules that still need to be followed on closed roads?
Even with the professional conditions of fully closed roads, it is important to remain prudent and respect the following:
- Keep to the left of the road so the faster riders can overtake on the right;
- When overtaking, do it on the right and with caution;
- Indicate prior to overtaking;
- When riding in the peloton, indicate to riders following of any dangers or imperfections on the route.
- Are there Food Zones on the route?
For the Race, there are four Food Zones and Two Water Zones, for the Ride there are three Food Zones and one Water Zone.
Water is available at all Food and Water Zones via self-help tanks with taps.
Food includes sundried figs, almonds, apples, oranges, bananas, crisps, salted crackers, gingerbread, fruitcake, cereal bars, energy bars, gels and sugar lollies. From the second Food Zone onwards additional substantial rolls and snacks will be provided.
Energy drinks -orange or cranberry (isotonic mixed with water), cola and soda water are available.
The Berridale Food Zone will not have sundried figs or salted crackers.
Food Zones will also have toilets, first aid stations, mechanical support and vehicles with the ability to transport eliminated or retired riders back to the L’Étape Village.
- Where are the Food Zones located?
Food Zones are listed below, with approximate km marker points:
- Feeding Zone 1: East Jindabyne (30km) – Race and Ride
- Feeding Zone 2: Beridale (76km) – Race and Ride
- Feeding Zone 3: Beloka Range (105km) – Race and Ride
- Feeding Zone 4: Thredbo River Picnic Area (135km) – Race only
- Drinking Zone 1: K/QOTM Peak (110km) – Race and Ride
- Drinking Zone 2: Dainers Gap (150km) – Race only
- Where am I able to dispose of rubbish?
All Food Zones will have bins to dispose of rubbish. If consuming gels or snacks while on the road, riders must ensure that they hold on to associated rubbish until they are able to dispose of this correctly. The Snowy Mountains region is a beautiful area and we need to ensure that everyone involved in the event is preserving the environment.
- What happens if I breakdown or have an accident on the course?
If a rider has an accident or mechanical issues there will be medical teams and neutral support at all Food Zones as well as on the route (mobile assistance). In addition to the neutral support offered, each rider should bring spare inner tubes, air pump and any extra components that they may need with them.
Riders will be provided with an emergency number to call for roadside pick-up if they are unable to make their own way to a Food Zone following an accident or a breakdown. In the event of riders waiting for roadside pick-up – with the exception of major injuries – riders are asked to move off the course and out of the way of other riders to wait for pick up.
- Will there be medical assistance available on the course?
There are first aid stations set up in the Snowy Hydro L’Étape Australia Village, at the Start Line, at Food Zones and on both the Race and the Ride Finish Lines.
There will also be medical teams among the riders on the route, in case riders need medical attention or transportation to a nearby first aid station.
- Where do I receive my Finishers Medal?
Riders who complete the Race or the Ride will receive a Finisher’s Medal once they have crossed the Finish Line.
- Will there be prizes for L’Étape Australia
Individual participants in the Race will be competing for the coveted official Tour de France Jerseys:
- THE YELLOW JERSEY will be presented to the overall male and female winner of the flagship Race.
- THE GREEN JERSEY will be awarded to the male and female Race winners of the Sprint section, set in the heart of Berridale.
- THE POLKA-DOT JERSEY will be presented to the male and female Race winners of the King of the Mountain, timed across both the Col de Beloka and Col de Kosciuszko climbs.
- THE WHITE JERSEY will be presented to the fastest overall male and female in the Race aged 25 years or less on the day of the event.
Team and Group riders will not be able to win the jerseys as team and group riders get assistance from their team members.
Prizes will also be awarded for the following participants in the Race and the Ride:
- The Men’s Race Team or Group Prize
- The Women’s Race Team or Group Prize
- The Mixed Race Team or Group Prize
- The Men’s Race Team or Group Prize
- The Men’s Ride Team or Group Prize
- The Women’s Ride Team or Group Prize
- The Mixed Ride Team or Group Prize
- The fastest male and female Ride participant in the Sprint section
- The fastest male and female Ride participant in the timed Col de Beloka climb
- The fastest Ride or Group team
- Will there be official photos taken during the event?
A team of eight professional photographers from Sportograf will be covering the event. One to two days after the event approximately 15 images of each rider will appear on the sportograf.com site, filed under your bib number and available for purchase.
Sportograf are specialist cycling race photographers who cover major events worldwide, including L’Étape du Tour.
- Will there be any merchandise for sale?
There will be a merchandise marquee in the Snowy Hydro L’Étape Australia Village, and a Rapha outlet offering the Official L’Étape Australia jersey.
Rapha was launched in 2004 with one mission: to create the finest cycling clothing and accessories in the world.
- Is accommodation included in the price?
No, accommodation is not included in the price.
- How do I book accommodation?
Please refer to the http://letapeaustralia.com/accommodation where there is a Hotels Combined widget for booking accommodation and links to other accommodation in the area.
- When will my results be published?
Unofficial results will be listed live over the course of the event.
Official results will be published on the L’Étape Australia website as they come available during the day.
- Supporters and Spectators
The road closures make it challenging for supporters and spectators to get around on Race day, but here are our thoughts on the best vantage spots.
Many people camp out for the day along the route supporting the riders with cheers, cow bells and flag waving – a quintessential Tour de France experience – but road closures mean that you’ll need to be prepared and equipped to remain in one place for a lengthy period.
Jindabyne is an ideal place to watch all the riders pass through from about 7:30am onwards, and for those on the Ride to cross the finishing line from 11:30am onwards. From Jindabyne you can also watch those in the Race come down Barry Way and head off towards Perisher for the final push.
The riders in the Race will make their way to Snowy River L’Étape Australia Village after coming down from Perisher on the Skitube to Crackenback.
The Sprint at Berridale is an ideal vantage point to watch all the riders dash the 350m timed sprint.
However, the roads to Berridale from Jindabyne will be closed from 06:30 until 11:45 so you’d need to be prepared to get there early and wait, although you can head off to Cooma from Berridale at any time if your vehicle is on the Cooma side of the road blocks.
Another vantage point is in Dalgety, perhaps from the Buckleys Crossing Hotel at Dalgety, as all the riders will pass there; turn the corner near the pub, before heading over the bridge and off to the first King of the Mountain section. Again, please be aware of the road closures.
For those with riders in the Race, after the roads reopen you can drive to the Start at Bullocks Flat and take the Skitube up to Perisher (trains run every half an hour) and watch as your riders come across the Race finish line. You can then come back down the Skitube to your car. There is no charge for the Skitube which is opening especially for L’Étape Australia.
Please note that the L’Étape Australia shuttle busses are provided for riders with bibs only.