Hanover, March 23, 2022. For Continental, the countdown to the world’s biggest and best-known cycling race begins today: In exactly 100 days, on July 1, 2022, the Tour de France will be starting with a 13-kilometer prologue through the Danish capital of Copenhagen. The cycling elite will be accompanied by the official vehicles of the A.S.O. (Amaury Sport Organization), which will this year once again be relying on tire technology from Hanover: the ŠKODA models will be driving in front of and behind the peloton to Paris on the PremiumContact 6 and EcoContact 6 Q. When it came to the choice of tires, the tire engineers and material experts at Continental paid particular attention to using a high proportion of sustainable materials. “We support the Tour de France’s goals for greater sustainability,” says Enno Straten, Head of Strategy, Analytics and Marketing at Continental Tires EMEA. “That’s why it’s only right for us to have the Tour vehicles driving on the latest and most sustainable tires that Continental can currently offer.”
The tires for the accompanying vehicles contain ContiRe.Tex technology, which Continental presented for the first time in August 2021. The polyester yarn in the casing – the load-bearing frame of a tire – is produced without any intermediate chemical steps from used PET bottles, which are not recycled in any other way. Each set of tires that Continental supplies for this year’s Tour contains polyester made from around 40 prepared PET bottles.
Continental is pursuing an ambitious goal of being the most advanced tire company in terms of ecological and social responsibility by 2030. By 2050 at the latest, Continental wants 100 percent of the materials it uses in its tire products to be sustainably produced, and to achieve complete climate neutrality along its entire value chain.
“We are very proud that with ContiRe.Tex technology, we can introduce another sustainable solution into the world of premium tires. This solution is also successfully used in the Extreme E series and will soon be included in our volume production,” says Straten. “Riders in the Tour de France also have to expect a wide range of ground coverings and driving situations and be able to count on safe tire performance. We are convinced that our premium products are the perfect partners on rain-soaked snaking downhill routes and long flat stages.”
The 109th edition of the Tour de France starts on July 1 in the bicycle capital of Europe, Copenhagen and, after around 3,300 kilometers and 21 stages, will end on the magnificent boulevard of the Avenue des Champs Élysées, Paris. 176 professional cyclists from 22 teams will face a 19-kilometer stretch with a cobblestone pavement, as well as two timed sections and six mountain stages including the legendary hill start in L’Alpe d’Huez on the fifth stage. Enno Straten is sure that the tires will prove themselves here as well: “The Tour de France is not only very exciting for us on a sporting level, it’s also exciting for our tires. We are delighted that it will start in just 100 days.”