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France (FRA)

roadskater's picture

A Crack in Astana's Armor at Paris-Nice? Sylvain Chavanel Wins Wet Third Stage and Takes GC Lead Over Alberto Contador

I only saw a half hour or a bit more of the third stage of the eight-stage (seven plus short prologue), but it was some of the most fun I've had watching cycling this year. It was a bit mucky out and the roads were less than optimal, and the entourage was more like that of Tour de Georgia or Tour of California. Quaint, compared with Le Tour de France. That alone was fun.

Locations

Orval,
France
46° 43' 30.486" N, 2° 28' 50.8404" E
Vichy,
France
46° 7' 23.0376" N, 3° 25' 20.6292" E
roadskater's picture

Some Humor and Some Fodder on the French, Razors, Rollerblades, More

If you want to read some funny comments and real observation (including why we need to be careful and caring when on skates), check out this little piece observing life in heaven, or hell, depending whether you love the little wheels. We need not be a nuisance of course, and plenty of other wheeled and non-wheeled folk are, but remember, we are a minority and thus often must meet a higher standard, or at least it helps if we do! As for the scooters (which I notice in parks parents are less likely to make kids wear a helmet when using!)....

Location

Paris,
France
48° 51' 24.0012" N, 2° 21' 3.5532" E
roadskater's picture

Dopers, Testers, Tests, Lance Armstong, Tour de France, Vuelta, Giro, Garmin-Chipotle

Well the Tour de France route for 2009 has come out, and there's some new old stuff, like the Team Time Trial is back. Some say this makes Lance Armstrong more likely to show up, some say less, and he seems to want some assurances from the organizers about respectful treatment or some such.

Meanwhile Contador sounded welcoming at first, but lately perhaps less so, and Vino's name has surfaced as well. Nothing solid here from me...just some impressions.

Location

Avenue des Champs-Elysées
Paris 75008
France
48° 52' 11.2836" N, 2° 18' 27.3096" E
timv's picture

Staying Cool: Temperature Management Ideas from the Tour de France

Good stuff from Velonews about Team Garmin-Chipotle and how Dr. Allen Lim improved performance and recovery by keeping the riders cool:

The team believes dealing with heat is more than just an issue of comfort.

roadskater's picture

100 Police on Rollerblades (Inline Skates) Guard Olympic Torch Relay in Paris

OK it's not too important, but I'm always fascinated by any mention of the inline skating police in Paris. This seems a not so wonderful way to catch criminals, so I guess their duty is limited to situations where they're just a helpful resource. Only in movies where the thiefs run straight down a sidewalk or road conveniently would the skates be that great for the chase. However, being included in any honor guard that includes motorbikes and firefighters is pretty nice. We're on a thin schedule of reinforcement, we skaters!

Location

United States
48° 51' 30.6108" N, 2° 17' 39.7032" E
roadskater's picture

Photos of Vintage Bikes in Gaiole, Chianti, Italy for L'Eroica: Plus Firenze, Siena, Grosseto

If you get a few minutes, please take a look at some bicycling, touring and vintage bike photos of Italy from Dale Brown at Cycles de Oro. There are lots of nice photos of the buildings, streets, people, and of course, classic bikes of Italy! Thanks for sharing, Dale! You're making us really jealous of your time in Italia. I just wish I could hear the narration that goes with this slideshow, because I know Dale has tons of great stories.

roadskater's picture

London England UK Mayor Wants Tour de France to Return Soon

Good vibes all around from London, England and the UK from hosting the Tour de France, or so it seems. I thought it was interesting and fun, and especially since the weather was so great for those days. The English really came out to look and seemed to be enthusiastic. I'm glad they're not piling on as there are enough piles to go around already. Mo' bettah testin' throughout the ranks I say and careful living for the riders it seems. It's a job many of us would gladly take!

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David Millar: Say It Ain't So, Vino (Alexandre Vinokourov); plus Michael Rasmussen, Floyd, Lance

As timv has noted, David Millar can spin a yarn nicely in his TdF Diaries. As a doper who had done his time, he's uniquely qualified to share several perspectives. And he was there for his own "Say it ain't so, Joe" moment when Vino's non-negative was first announced. I'll leave most of the piece for you to read on the Bicycling site, but here's a brief sample of that moment:

timv's picture

Tour de France Rest Day: My Favorite Anecdote from Week One

During the rest day, I've been speed-reading through various reports and blog entries for the first nine days of this year's Tour. My favorite story so far comes from David Millar's Stage 5 diary account of rookie British sprinter Mark Cavendish on his first-ever hilly TdF stage:

roadskater's picture

Inline Skaters Get Great Tour de France TV Coverage and Comments

Just a quick note to say that on today's stage of the Tour de France, some inline skaters made the video coverage and were even commented upon favorably by Phil Liggett (and maybe by Paul Sherwen too).

The first view was of the solo race leader with a solo skater in a low race position making good time on a road parallel to the TdF course.

The second view a few minutes later was of four skaters on the parallel road, behind the full peloton, with fields of sunflowers in the foreground and between the two roads.

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