Watching the Tour

Each year I like to watch part of the Tour de France. I really like to watch the scenery as they cycle through France. I also like the strategy needed to control breakaways, set up for sprint or climbing points and watch how they work together to conserve energy.

This year the coverage has been a little different. One of the commentators is not even in France, but is covering the race from his home in England. The crowds are also not as big as they restrict the number of spectators and where they can watch from. There are of course still people who do crazy things. Another thing interesting to watch 🙂

This year has been pretty exciting, although I have not watched too much of the race. I have watched more in the past week, and today was the final stage into Paris.

This made me think of when the Amgen Tour of California rolled through town about eleven years ago.

2009 Tour of California, Tracy, California, CyclingI walked a couple miles from my house to where they were going to be passing through on the outskirts of town. I got there in plenty of time to wait for the first riders to come through.

First there was a breakaway group that came speeding through. I didn’t have my camera on the right setting, but it does show that they are moving quickly.

2009 Tour of California, Tracy, California, CyclingI missed the other three riders in this picture. This is the 4th rider of the breakaway as he rounds the corner.

Do you see the hills in the distance? You may think that they were headed for the winding roads in the hill. However, they had just come through these hills and were now headed toward Modesto on the flat ground of the Central Valley.

2009 Tour of California, Tracy, California, CyclingAbout five minutes later came the peloton. Somewhere in this group of riders is Lance Armstrong as in 2009 he was riding for Astana. The Astana team are the riders with the blue uniforms with yellow on the shoulders.

2009 Tour of California, Tracy, California, CyclingIt was really cool to stand beside the road and see how fast the riders were coming by. It helped put what I have always watched on TV in perspective. How fast are they really going?

2009 Tour of California, Tracy, California, CyclingThe riders were soon through the intersection and heading south toward Modesto.

2009 Tour of California, Tracy, California, CyclingNext were the team cars that came streaming past as they followed the riders. There were also a few riders that were off the back of the peleton that soon rode by.

The peleton did catch up to the breakaway group but not until close to the end of the stage and there was a sprint finish.

The tour has come through town again and right down the main road by my house. I didn’t have far to go to take pictures that time, but couldn’t easily find them tonight. However, I didn’t look too long as I had these older ones 🙂

Some nice memories. I hope that someday a future tour will again ride through town.

Have you watched any of the Tour de France?

Steven

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1 Response to Watching the Tour

  1. On Monday, September 21, 2020, Braman’s Wanderings wrote:

    > vanbraman posted: “Each year I like to watch part of the Tour de France. I > really like to watch the scenery as they cycle through France. I also like > the strategy needed to control breakaways, set up for sprint or climbing > points and watch how they work together to conserve” >

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