Tour de France 2013: Stage 21 – Versailles to Paris Champs-Élysées

Bonjour! Stage 21 is the celebration stage. Rolling out from the Palace of Versailles and heading for Paris in the evening for a twighlight sprint around the Champs-Élysées. Setting off in beautiful late afternoon sunshine, all the riders looked relaxed and in good mood. This year, the sprint went round the Arc du Triomphe and there … Continue reading Tour de France 2013: Stage 21 – Versailles to Paris Champs-Élysées

Tour de France 2013: Stage 20 – Annecy to Annecy-Semnoz

Bonjour! Stage 20 was outstanding, from the weather and scenery to incredible racing. There were many highlights, including Jens Voigt showing the youngsters how to climb a hill and fantastic breaks between Froome, Quintana and Rodriguez, not to mention some handsome cattle suitably dressed. Most of the final places overall were resolved in this stage. … Continue reading Tour de France 2013: Stage 20 – Annecy to Annecy-Semnoz

Tour de France 2013: Stage 18 – Gap to Alpe d’Huez

Bonjour! Stage 18, the one with the notorious climb to Alpe d'Huez, lived up to expectations. An intense, gruelling stage, leaving riders not only battling the hill, but contending with arguably the largest crowds ever. The roads were chaotic all the way. Van Garderen led for most of the race and then with barely 2km … Continue reading Tour de France 2013: Stage 18 – Gap to Alpe d’Huez

Tour de France 2013: Stage 16 – Vaison-la-Romaine to Gap

Bonjour! Stage 16 saw the Alpine stages begin travelling through quietly dramatic scenery, through gorges and by rivers. The stage closed with a climb and hair-raising descent of the Col de Mense. A passing train briefly brought all the riders to a halt and likewise, Chris Froome was momentarily dislodged by a hurtling Contador. Rui Costa joyfully … Continue reading Tour de France 2013: Stage 16 – Vaison-la-Romaine to Gap

Tour de France 2013: Stage 15 – Givors to Mont Ventoux

Bonjour ! Stage 15 was a fantastic, gruelling course leading to the summit of Mont Ventoux. Emotional resonance for British fans and arguably one of the toughest climbs on any Tour. Sylvain Chavanel showed wonderful energy early on, followed by the outstanding Quintana. But showing tremendous strength Chris Froome broke away brilliantly and almost sprinted to … Continue reading Tour de France 2013: Stage 15 – Givors to Mont Ventoux

Tour de France 2013: Stage 13 – Tours to Saint-Amand-Montrond

Bonjour! Stage 13 was another long stage crossing the farmland of central France towards Lyon. A few surprises as Kittel fell away along with Valverde. While Sky dissolved, Contador attacked Froome's lead, but he clung on to the yellow jersey. This time though the stage belonged to Cavendish. Number 25 - Brilliant! Here are my … Continue reading Tour de France 2013: Stage 13 – Tours to Saint-Amand-Montrond

Tour de France 2013: Stage 10 – Saint-Gildas-Des-Bois to Saint Malo

Bonjour! The Tour moves north to Brittany for a relatively flat, peaceful stage. Not a bit of it, the scenery was rolling and green with beautiful coastal roads. Riders coped with unpredictable crosswinds and, at times, each other. Controversial and exciting, Marcel Kittel surged across the finishing line to pip Greipel to the win.  Here … Continue reading Tour de France 2013: Stage 10 – Saint-Gildas-Des-Bois to Saint Malo

Tour de France 2013: Stage 9 – Saint Girons to Bagnères-de-Bigorre

Bonjour! A fluid start to the second and final stage in the Pyrenees, with Chris Froome alone to keep up with Movistar leaders Quintana and Valverde. This year the Col de Mente was in glorious sunshine where it was foggy last year and the battle commenced from there at great pace. All sorts of surprises, … Continue reading Tour de France 2013: Stage 9 – Saint Girons to Bagnères-de-Bigorre

Tour de France 2013: Stage 7 – Montpellier to Albi

Bonjour! Southern stage takes the riders inland towards the Pyrenees. Agricultural landscapes contrast with Stage 6's more industrial scenery. Essentially another stage for sprinters but the hills begin to test in readiness for the Pyrenees. Team Cannondale dominated the stage. Finally a great win for the big man in green, Peter Sagan. Here are my … Continue reading Tour de France 2013: Stage 7 – Montpellier to Albi