Until Haute Route began in 2010, there was no bike race where amateur cyclists could ride the same mountain roads as the pros. There is now. Haute Route turns the Pyrenees, the Alps and the Dolomites into a playground for 1,600 hardened cycling aficionados. A week in each mountain range, seven stages in seven consecutive days of racing, 20 legendary cols and more than 20,000m of climbing every time.

Normally only professional cyclists can tackle so many difficult challenges in quick succession. Any amateur would crack. But these 1,600 die-hards, from 50 different countries, draw on their deepest mental and physical reserves to achieve their dreams and finish the race. They make the TAG Heuer slogan #DontCrackUnderPressure their own for the three weeks of Haute Route.


The Swiss watchmaker becomes the official timekeeper of Haute Route and main sponsor of the three time trial days, one in each mountain range. The time trial is a challenge that pits lone riders against the remorseless watch, and the equally remorseless course. There's no question of sitting on a teammate's wheel. A sporting discipline where you do battle with yourself to push your limits.

Meanwhile the finishes are friendly, welcoming and warm to reward riders for their efforts. This year TAG Heuer is introducing a Watch Truck to travel the whole route: a chrome-trimmed Airstream decked out in the Brand's colors where we'll be serving refreshing, energizing drinks throughout the race. So Haute Route is all about cycling and mountain cols: Lautaret, Galibier, Izoard, Tourmalet, Aubisque, Aspin... It's also about organizational standards worthy of the biggest professional bike races. And above all it's about camaraderie: Haute Route finishers join a fellowship that recognizes each other's achievements. They can say "You did it", "I was there". During training, the intrepid riders who start the adventure often say "It's hard but I'll get there". During the race it becomes "Never again, this race is hellish". When it's over: "I did it, I made it". And straight after: "I'm signing up again, I'm game for another try". An attitude, a mindset which is very #DontCrackUnderPressure, very TAG Heuer.