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  1. #1
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    Tour de France 2013

    The 100th editition of the race starts tomorrow with the team presentation and the racing begins this weekend in Corsica. Teams and riders are starting to arrive with boatloads of bikes arriving on the overnight ferries. The neverending doping stories diminish the allure a bit, but the real beauty of the race is in the wide range of stories and scenes set to unfold.

    The GC race will pit last year's runner up Froome, against former winner Alberto Contador, back after a doping suspension from what he claimed was beef tainted with clenbeuterol. Last year's winner, Bradley Wiggins, has been hampered by injuries and illness and won't be competing. Froome is supported by Richie Porte, who could make his own bid for the podium if Froome falters. Also contending is Radio Shack's Andy Schleck, who was declared a winner after Contador was stripped of one of his titles. Schleck seems large off form this year, perhaps due to the loss of older brother Frank who is sitting out this year due to a doping suspension.

    Outside contenders like Pierre Rollands who has twice finished in the top 10, and American Tejay Van Garderen who won the white jersey last year will be looking to improve on their finishes. Canada's Ryder Hesjedahl - winner of the Giro d'Italia last year - will lead Garmin, but his attempt to repeat at the Giro this year was hampered by illness and it's not clear he's in peak form.

    But the sprinters are sure to provide some excitement. Cavendish has been the top sprinter for some time, but expect some challenges this year from Peter Sagan who is especially strong with an uphill finish before the sprint. Greipel will also be looking to start the race strong and Cav sometimes is a slow starter for the Tour. The race starts with a sprint this year, so the first sprinter to make a statement should also get the first yellow jersey.

    Stage info and map

    Infographic on the 21 stages

    Cyclingfans for the best video and audio links, live tickers and useful dashboards
    Last edited by Garden Kitty; 06-27-2013 at 11:16 AM.
    "The Devil is joining in, and that's never a good sign." Phil Liggett

  2. #2
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    Tour day Schmalz preview - Schmalz will be on vacation for the first week, so we'll have to wait till week 2 to get his summaries.

    Edited to add:

    A summary of useful French words and phrases you may hear while watching the Tour from the Podium Cafe website

    Le Tour: Killers, Pretenders and Dreamers preview from Pez
    Last edited by Garden Kitty; 06-28-2013 at 05:35 PM.
    "The Devil is joining in, and that's never a good sign." Phil Liggett

  3. #3
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    I am super excited about this edition of the tour. It's a pity that Bradley Wiggins won't be able to defend his title. It will be interesting to see how Chris Froome answers to all the expectations that have been created around him. I am looking forward for the duel between Cavendish and Sagan. Can't wait!

  4. #4

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    Starts tonight. Really looking forward to it. Three weeks of going to bed (and falling asleep) watching beautiful French countryside and mountains.
    When you are up to your arse in alligators it is difficult to remember you were only meant to be draining the swamp.

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    Go Cadel!

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    The Tour often starts off a little wacky and this week is no different. Buses stuck on the finish line, changing finish lines, surprise winners and once again a dog in the mix. Froome even rode into a curb and needed a bike change in the neutral zone on the first day!
    "The Devil is joining in, and that's never a good sign." Phil Liggett

  7. #7

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    Been enjoying this tour. Must. Visit. Corsica.

  8. #8

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    Quote Originally Posted by kedrin View Post
    Been enjoying this tour. Must. Visit. Corsica.
    Corsica looks amazing; I don't think I bothered to look at any of the racers because I was so stunned by the scenery.

  9. #9
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    Great start to the Tour for Australia!

    But heartbreak for Ted King who was injured in the crash on day 1, and now is cut by 7 seconds on the TTT. Apparently they appealed because of problems with measuring his time, but the appeal was turned down. Maybe it's just as well that he isn't risking further injury, but how disappointing for him.

    Bicycling magazine article re the timing confusion on King's ride
    Last edited by Garden Kitty; 07-02-2013 at 10:00 PM.
    "The Devil is joining in, and that's never a good sign." Phil Liggett

  10. #10

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    I agree about Corsica. Beautiful scenery.

    Go Orica Green Edge!!! Loved the scenes of the support crews cheering.
    When you are up to your arse in alligators it is difficult to remember you were only meant to be draining the swamp.

  11. #11

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    Great win. I love the TTT- one of my favorite events.

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    I forgot to check in with the FSU TDF thread! Before the race my dad was like "aren't you excited that Cav has a chance for the yellow jersey?" and I responded "It's the first sprint of the Tour. He'll probably just crash."

    Oops.

    I haven't figured out who I'm rooting for in the GC this year. I would normally root for Andy Schleck but I think that's a little premature. Right now I'm rooting for him just to have a solid race. And I always root for Tejay but he's not the leader of BMC right now. So I'm not that emotionally attached to any of the main contenders. Maybe I'll root for Alberto just to be contrary.

    Any idea why Farrar was left of the Garmin-Sharp team? Were they just trying to focus the team around Hesjedal? (Oh! Maybe that's who I'll root for!)

    I feel so bad for Tony Martin. That's just an awful way to start the tour. In any other sport, he'd have been completely forbidden from participating after that concussion. Cyclists are pretty insane.

    I'm also pretty grumpy that Cav hasn't loudly blamed Greipel for crashing Tony Martin on stage 1. Sure, he complained about the race jury (the most popular group in the world right now) for neutralizing the time but not the points (about which he is probably right) but it's just not the same.

  13. #13

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    I think I'm rooting for Froom- I thought he was strong than Wiggins last year, so I'd like to see him take it. I wouldn't mind if Cadel won another, either.

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    Cav yesterday! And I love him for managing to mention both that he never really wins until the 5th stage (he's noticed, too!) and state that Orica GreenEdge never does any work.

    (I haven't finished today yet.)

  15. #15
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    Cav was not a happy boy today. Per the team director:

    “I just heard him yelling inside the bus but I don’t know what about. I think nobody can understand him when he’s yelling. Nobody has a clue what he’s saying.
    "The Devil is joining in, and that's never a good sign." Phil Liggett

  16. #16

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    Quote Originally Posted by Theatregirl1122 View Post
    Any idea why Farrar was left of the Garmin-Sharp team? Were they just trying to focus the team around Hesjedal? (Oh! Maybe that's who I'll root for!)
    Yes. They're trying to refocus their strategy towards GC versus sprint wins. I feel terrible for Tyler, I hope he gets a new team soon.

    Like always, I'm rooting for Andy; however, I'm not assured he'll be on the podium this year. I hope he can pull of a surprise stage win in the mountains, it'd be great for his confidence.


    RadioShack-Leopard lets go of Frank Schleck days before his ban ends.
    Sometimes I think I lost something really important to me, and it turns out I already ate it.

  17. #17
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    So far the Tour of France is living up to the expectations. We’ve seen some great moments already, even though the big favorites haven’t been on the spotlight yet (Froome and Contador will probably start shining during the weekend).
    Today, Cannondale was absolutely brilliant and controlled the stage from the beginning until the very end. Those cyclists imposed such a high pace that Lotto, Argos and Omega couldn’t keep up with (Greipel, Kittel and Cavendish were included in a second group behind the bunch). In the end, Sagan convincingly won the intermediate sprint and the stage, collecting a huge amount of points that helped him maintain the green jersey with a significant lead. Sagan already has 224 points under his belt. Amazing.
    Daryl Impey secured the yellow jersey but will most likely lose it tomorrow. Actually team Orica is doing great with 3 riders in the top 4.
    Top 20 in the yellow jersey table (minimal time differences between the these riders):
    1 – Daryl Impey (Orica)
    2 – Boasson Hagen (Sky)
    3 – Simon Gerrans (Orica)
    4 – Michael Albasini (Orica)
    5 – Michal Kwiatkowski (Omega)
    6 – Sylvain Chavanel (Omega)
    7 – Chris Froome (Sky)
    8 – Ritchie Porte (Sky)
    9 – Nicolas Roche (Saxo-Tinkoff)
    10 – Roman Kreuziger (Saxo-Tinkoff)
    11 – Alberto Contador (Saxo-Tinkoff)
    12 – Michael Rogers (Saxo-Tinkoff)
    13 – Andrew Talansky (Garmin)
    14 – Ryder Hesjedal (Garmin)
    15 – Daniel Martin (Garmin)
    16 – Thomas Danielson (Garmin)
    17 – Alejandro Valverde (Movistar)
    18 – Rui Costa (Movistar)
    19 – Nairo Quintana (Movistar)
    20 – Andrei Amador (Movistar)
    (…)

    22 – Cadel Evans (BMC)
    23 – Philippe Gilbert (BMC)
    24 – Tejay van Garderen (BMC)
    (…)
    29 – Joaquin Rodriguez (Katusha)
    (…)
    33 – Andy Schleck (Radioshack)

  18. #18
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    It's true that the landscapes are stunning but is it really necessary to show so much of it when there are key things happening on the road? Yesterday, many important cyclists fell, Mark Cavendish and Joaquin Rodriguez are just an exemple, and we didn't get to see it. I don't say this because of any sadistic wish to see crashes and people getting hurt but because it is important to understand the race and realize why some riders lost contact with the bunch and so on...

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    Quote Originally Posted by DaiKozOda View Post
    It's true that the landscapes are stunning but is it really necessary to show so much of it when there are key things happening on the road? Yesterday, many important cyclists fell, Mark Cavendish and Joaquin Rodriguez are just an exemple, and we didn't get to see it. I don't say this because of any sadistic wish to see crashes and people getting hurt but because it is important to understand the race and realize why some riders lost contact with the bunch and so on...
    I think The issue is that there are a finite number of cameras/cameramen and they simply cannot be everywhere. Sometimes they get the crashes and sometimes they don't.

  20. #20
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    Off course they can't have a camera to follow around every single rider but in other editions of the tour (in my opinion) the broadcast was better. Even if they didn't caught it "on the moment" they would mention it. Nevertheless, there are still a lot of stages to go and hopefully it will get better
    In what concerns Rodriguez, I found out about his crash on twitter.

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