Later today starts another amazing 23 days of cycling. I have the Stevo locked on OLN and Newsgator pointed at Frank Steele’s always awesome Tour de France blog!
- Can Lance make it to seven?
- Will we see Jan Ullrich wear yellow in Paris?
- Can Ivan Basso stay with Lance again in the mountains?
- Is Bob Roll going to shave those gnarly muttonchops?
I have no idea, but I cannot wait to find out!
We’ll miss you this year Tyler Hamilton — Good luck!
The start of Le Tour is just hours away and I am already on the edge with anticipation. No matter the outcome, I guarantee that it is going to be an epic battle. Far more dramatic and compelling than any over-hyped “reality show” could force feed viewers.
Kudos to the Outdoor Live Network (OLN-TV) for their live unabridged coverage. I or my STeVo will be there from Liege to the Champs-ElysÃ©es in Paris!
Also, for anyone even remotely interested in The Tour you simply must check out Frank Steele’s Tour de France Blog, which I believe is his third year blogging Le Tour.
I’ve been subscribed to Frank’s feed for over a year and I feel like I’ve been kept up-to-date on the entire cycling season. Thanks Frank!
New York Times article on the technological advances going into Lance Armstrong’s equipment for this year’s Tour de France
“This is a mathematical model,” he said, noting that other factors affect performance. “A rider could have a bad breakfast.” (Link via Lockergnome’s Tech News Watch)
From a spectators point of view, it’s a little early to be thinking of the 2004 Tour de France, but Eurosport has an excellent analysis of Armstrong’s chances for six
“In the group of five-timers, however, Armstrong excels in one crucial domain: More than any of the others, Armstrong can endure the forces of an apocalyptic Tour de France — and still emerge with his yellow jersey intact.” Here’s why…
Well, as I’m sure most know, Lance made it to number five.
Congratulations on joining the Five-Timers-Club
Congratulations also to the awesome Postal Team!
Speaking of Lance, here’s a great quote from the recent Washington Post article by Sally Jenkins who co-author of the Lance Armstrong book, “It’s Not About the Bike: My Journey Back to Life”
“Lance serves no purpose if people think that he survived cancer or wins races solely through some specialness, some rare gift. The most useful purpose he can serve is to tell people it’s an absolutely universal human experience to be tired and ill. So “hero” is simply not a word that he’s very interested in.”(via Frank Steel’s TdF Blog)
I’ll add that this was certainly exemplified by, as Frank Steel puts it, Tyler “Freaking” Hamilton as well, who amazingly finished second in Saturday’s treacherous Time Trial, which moved him to fourth over all.
Although, I must admit, I was on pins-and-needles last Saturday watching the Time Trial. As much as I wanted to see Lance pull-it-out, I felt awful watching Ulrich slide of a turn into the hay bails near the 10k mark. I didn’t want to see him go down nor Lance win based on a fall.
I realize that’s part of the game and adds to the continuing drama, but it’s just sad to watch.
BTW, if you’re looking for a good summary of the 2003 Tour de France, check out Samuel Abt’s tour wrap-up in the NY Times. (FRR)
Stage 16: Armstrong still retains the Yellow Jersey, but …
“With a fractured collarbone, Tyler Hamilton has battled on to become the sixth American rider to win a stage of the Tour de France.”(via Le tour en direct
I know I keep saying it, but what an awesome race!
Kudos to all the riders in “Le Tour” this year!!
I was on the edge of my seat, even while reading the live updates online of today’s stage 15.
All I can say is WOW! I can’t wait to watch the replay tonight!
“At the end of the 15th stage, Armstrong has increased his lead over Ullrich. The American is now 1’07” ahead of the German in the generall classification. Vinokourov began the day within 18″ of the overall lead, he finished it with a deficit of 2’45”.
The final individual time-trial is going to be exciting as well.
Over one minute is a lot of time for any rider to make up against Lance in a time-trial, but then again, Jan Ullrich is not just any rider!
I’m still on the edge of my seat!
Wow, what a Tour!
BTW, Tyler Hamilton also finished up with the lead group today in 7th place, which puts him in 7th overall as well. Amazing!
At least Armstrong still retains the overall lead with 34 seconds over Ullrich, but …
“Ullrich … powered across the 29 miles of rolling vineyards in 58 minutes, 32 seconds to take the Tour’s 12th stage. He was the only rider of 167 to finish in less than an hour.”(via ESPN)
“Immediately after crossing the finish line in fifth place, American Tyler Hamilton — competing with a broken collarbone — stumbled off his bike, lurched forward and vomited.”
But, Tyler is still amazing in that he is fourth overall, 2:59 behind the Lance!
It goes without saying, but the PyrÃ©nÃ©es are going to be tough!
Wow! What a race!
Catherine sent me the following quote from Tyler Hamilton’s latest journal entry about his current status at the Tour:
“The pain in my collarbone is now being matched by pain in my spine. I started feeling a jabbing pain in my back and rib cage a couple of days ago. We just figured it was a bruise making its way to the surface and that it would get better each day. But the problem is it’s been getting worse.”
I do hope Tyler can continue in the Tour this year.
And then there’s the following quote about Lance jumping back onto the road after his Mountain Biking excursion, which was triggered to avoid the awful crash by Joseba Beloki…
“I instinctively threw out my arm to try and give him a push to help get him up to speed, but then I realized I had reached out with my right arm, which is the side with my collarbone fractures. At the last second, I pulled my hand away. I don’t think I would have been much help to him anyway. He seemed to have the situation under control. Although his heart rate must have been over 200 at the time.”
IMHO, Tyler Hamilton is the unsung hero of the Tour this year. He should be getting more press for his acheivements!
Yes, indeed go Lance! But I find myself amazing that not only is Tyler still in the Tour, he’s actually still riding with the leaders. Tyler, being one of them; in 5th place overall!
Anil Dash points to a great Tour de France weblog.
I’d like to add however, that VeloNews has been reporting live coverage of the tour in blog-like fashion for the last few years, which has been great as well!
Postal Wins the Team Time Trial and “Victor Hugo Pena has become the first Colombian ever to wear the yellow jersey of the Tour de France.”
That’s so awesome!
Also, Tyler Hamilton, still riding with a broken collarbone, finishes the Team Time Trial with his CSC Tiscali team mates for a 10th place finish.
Amazing! Go Tyler!
Amazing! — Tyler Hamilton has started stage two of the Tour De France with a broken collarbone, which he suffered during yesterday’s massive crash at the end of stage one!
“The second stage of the Tour de France is now underway and it appears that Tyler Hamilton, after Sunday’s devastating crash, is going to tough it out and try to ride today’s 204.5km route between La Ferte-sous-Jouarre and Sedan. “(via VeloNews)
After breaking my collarbone on a ride a few years ago, I could not even imagine sitting on my bike the day after let alone ride.
I’m in awe. Go Tyler!
This year being the 100 Anniversary of the Tour and (potentially) Armstrong’s 5th consecutive win, next only to Miguel Indurain, I’m eagerly awaiting the start of today’s prologue and live coverage on OLN TV.
It also looks like VeloNews will again be blogging Live Tour Updates, which in past years has been extremely valuable given the time difference.
I was looking forward to an epic Memorial Day ride today, but the current downpour seems to have put a damper on the plans. Perhaps I need one of these for the trails. (Thanks for the link Ed!)
Ahh, looks like a great day for a spring mountain bike ride! I went yesterday, but
today it seems like the trails are just screaming for me to come back!