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Archive for TDF Stage 13

TDF Stage 14 Pyrenees Factor

Revel -> Ax-3 Domaines

Team Astana is as the front, giving Saxo Bank concern. Contador can climb. He has won all 4 of the Grand Tours he has participated in. He has won the last 2 TDF in a row. Will this be the day he puts the stamp on his podium position as the race goes into the Pyrenees? The HC Port de Pailhères may tell.

Let’s watch, I’ll be back…

On one of the group rides I’ve done this year, my buddy asked how fast the riders in the Tour go. She and I were averaging 17mph, our top speed just over 20mph (the top speed I’ve ever reached is 25mph, but that was on a short 10 mile stretch). The boys can fly down the flats around 35mph – and they do more than 100 miles per day averaging more than 25mph.

Anyone want to practice reading French? The official site for TDF has a guide with interesting bits of info about towns along the route, significance to cycling, local agriculture and historic landmarks, etc. Go to Guide and select the étape. Fun reading!

UPDATE
Lance fell off the back of the peloton during the first climb. The HC has been conquered and the descent has begun. One more, shorter but harder, climb ahead to the stage finish.

Riblon takes the day!

TDF Stage 13 Rodez – Revel veni,vidi,vinokourov

First – what is your take on Contador launching himself ahead of his own teammate, if he really didn’t need the stage? OK, so he wanted the time, but, didn’t it seem like he was helping Rodriguez, rather than Vino? Granted, Contador is strong and talented; but, this smacks of the selfish tactics he pulled against Lance. You can respect the jersey, but you don’t have to like the guy in it (I consider him still a kid). Frankly, I would like to see Andy Schleck take it away from Contador, in the end (I think Andy will relinquish it for a bit before the last stages to Paris).

OK, off my soap box…

Today’s ride has a lot of climbs, judging by the elevation of the route, but the finish will favor sprinters. Cav is plenty talented without Renshaw, but who can step up to the plate for him? Andy Schleck is a mere 31 seconds ahead of Contador after yesterday’s tough climb, and I wonder if he has the new magic boot technology available that helps cyclists’ legs recover faster.

Meanwhile, back at the Lance ranch…it’s painful to see him so far behind in GC, and Levi is a good 4 mins behind Schleck, with only 1 more week to go. Today, Lance fell in the neutral zone at the start of the stage – wot??!!?? 15 years ago, Lance won a stage on this route. I wonder what will be going through his head today…

woo-hoo, congrats to Vino for his stage win – and vindication for 2007, yesterday, you name it!