Tour de France

Posted: Monday, July 23, 2012 by Travis Cody in
9

2012 Tour de France winner Bradley Wiggins
Congratulations to Bradley Wiggins on becoming the first man from Britain to win the Tour de France.  He is an excellent all around rider with particular skill in time trialing and mountain climbing, which are the main disciplines that aspiring Tour winners must master.  After abandoning the 2011 Tour after a terrible crash in which he broke his collarbone, Wiggins lived up to expectations as a favorite this year with a strong showing, winning by over 3 minutes.  His teammate on British team Sky Procycling, Christopher Froome of South Africa (riding on a British license), finished second.  That's a tremendous result in an Olympic year for Great Britain, with the London Summer Games set to open on 27 July.

Thomas Voeckler
Congratulations also to Thomas Voeckler, a Frenchman riding for team Europcar, who won the polka dot jersey as the points leader of the mountain classification.  Voeckler is one of my favorite bike racers.  There was some doubt as to whether he would finish this year.  I was pleased to see that he followed up his outstanding performance from 2011, when he held the yellow jersey from stage 10 through stage 18 and finished 4th overall, with the king of the mountains in 2012.

Fabian Cancellara
We were only able to watch the first week of the tour this year because of vacation.  We did at least get to see one of my other favorite racers, Fabian Cancellara of Switzerland and team Radioshack-Nissan, hold the yellow jersey for the first 6 days of this year's tour before withdrawing after the 10th stage to return home for the birth of his second child.

Peter Sagan
But we missed the mountain stages when the tour is really won, although we did get to see some exciting sprint finishes during that first week.  Peter Sagan, a young Slovakian riding for team Liquigas-Cannondale, burst through in his first tour to win 3 stages and the green jersey as the sprint points leader.  He actually demolished the sprint field, winning by a whopping 141 points.   We also got to see the emergence of American Tejay van Garderen, riding for team BMC, as the highest finishing rider under the age of 26.  That means he won the white jersey, as well as a 5th place overall finish in his 2nd Tour appearance.

Tejay van Garderen
I can't comment on the quality of this year's overall race because I just didn't see enough of it.  I am disappointed in some of the things I read...such as the fan with the camera who caused the accident during the first week, the fan who somehow managed to burn Bradley Wiggins with a flare during one stage, the idiots who thought it would be a good idea to throw tacks onto the road during a mountain stage, and the family who allowed their dog to get into the road and cause a crash that injured, among others, Olympic hopeful Phillipe Gilbert of Belgium.

I don't know what can be done about stupid people along the race route.  I don't accept that as part of the challenge, but how do you instill them with the common sense to stay out of the damn way?  The safety of the riders and the integrity of the result should be more important than allowing fans to line the sides of the road without any barriers between them and the speeding cyclists.


9 comments:

  1. Tacks? Really? I've never watched bike racing and probably never will but it must be like any other arena with fans... You can't fix stupid, Trav. srsly.

  1. Akelamalu says:

    We are very proud of Bradley here in the UK. :)

  1. I read about this. Indeed, he done good.

  1. I was going to watch the final stage, and then learned the results while reading someone's blog before the race was televised here. :-(

  1. very nice job. congrats to Bradley for his win. hope all is well. have a great day~

  1. Ivanhoe says:

    Isn't it great and right before London Olympics? I can not wait. 3 more days :)

  1. Tacks??! I hope they were caught an arrested. Idiotic! And mean. Good Lord.

    I learn something from you everyday. Polka dot jerseys. I never knew.

  1. TopChamp says:

    WOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!

  1. TopChamp says:

    (obv not for the tacks)