TdF: Sweet heartbreak

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Of course, it was incredible that 2 riders would break out from the pack only 5 km in on a 204 km stage. More incredible that they would maintain a lead for another 180 or 190 km, always just about 10 minutes in front, not enough that the peloton would chase them down, but far enough out. Finot and Jegou were out there alone for almost the entire race, and then all of a sudden you could watch Jegou hit the wall . . . Finot pulled around him on an uphill, and there was nothing for Jegou to do but wait for the peloton to swallow him up. But incredibly, Finot had more to give, and they didn't catch him until there were only 2.5 km to go. Everybody was rooting for him, that he could pull off an incredible performance that would probably live on forever in TdF history -- it simply isn't done. You can't just break off into the lead and stay there for the entire race. Sadly, it wasn't done. They swallowed him up and taught him the essential lesson of the Tour de France -- conserve your energy -- as the sprinters, having gone 202 km, suddenly poured it on for an amazing finish. These are guys traveling in a tight pack, around corners, doing 30-40 miles an hour after hours of riding. It looked like McGee would do it, but it was his teammate, Baden Cooke, who took the win. McGee still wears le maillot jaune. Unbelievably exciting. (Finot finished with the peloton, and got the same time as the winner. Jegou finished 7 minutes and 10 seconds back, which is an eternity in bike racing.)

You have no idea what I'm talking about, do you? Oh, well . . . All I can say is, bicycle racing ROCKS!

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This page contains a single entry by Carl published on July 8, 2003 6:23 PM.

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