The 2012 Tour de France officially begins early on Saturday. (Early here on the West Coast, at any rate.) As the world's premiere cyclists gather for the prologue stage in Liege, Belgium, among them will be two Northwestern riders. Tyler Farrar will be part of the Garmin-Barracuda team and will be riding in support of Giro d'Italia winner Ryder Hesjedal. Chris Horner, meanwhile, will be gunning for the yellow jersey himself as part of the Radioshack-Nissan Trek team.
The first stage on Saturday will consist of an individual time trial that is mostly for bragging rights, but will nonetheless be a worthwhile watch to get the Tour started. The prologue stage will be an almost entirely flat 6.4-kilometer race through the streets of Liege that should take each rider approximately eight minutes to complete.
NBC Sports Network will provide live coverage of the prologue stage on Saturday morning beginning at 5:00 a.m. PT.