Tuesday, 24 July 2012

In Praise of - Bradley Wiggins at Le Tour de France

I used to do get out and about cycling quite a bit twenty years ago, this year's Le Tour has certainly reminded me why I love it so much. Also, I've quite enjoyed some of the cycling related banter from the BIM crew on Twitter.

I knew Wiggins had a fair chance of doing well this year, so I made a point of watching Le Tour each night for the last three weeks. The first time I have done this since the days of Lance Armstrong. My favourite three moments of Le Tour have been...

#1 - Stage 7 
Champion Cadel Evans attacks Wiggins and Froome again and again. Wiggins holds his wheel and takes the yellow jersey. Froome puts the marker down that he's the best climber by winning the stage. I love the picture below of Froome powering over the final hill and over the finish line with Wiggins attached firmly to Evans' wheel.
Stage 7 - Wiggins gets the yellow jersey
#2 - Stage 17 
Any questions about whether Wiggins will win or not are put to bed as Froome and Wiggins ride the whole field off their back wheels on the final climb. Great Britain one and two. Le Tour is over.
Stage 17 - Froome and Wiggins ride away from everyone on final climb
#3 - Stage 20
If this had been Indurain or Armstrong the yellow jersey would have been coming into Paris safely in the pack with a glass of Champagne in-hand. Wiggins on the other hand led out the sprint from the final 1km over the cobbles and coming out of the tunnel. A fantastic sight to see the Yellow Jersey leading the whole Tour de France homes.
Stage 20 - Wiggins leads out the sprint for his team mate Cavendish
And now it's time for the Olympics. What price for a Cavendish road race win and a Wiggins time trial win?

...also, maybe I'd better use my bike a bit more than simply to amble the 5km to the train station each day?
1992 - a young geordie teenager on the slopes of Alpe D'Huez

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