View Full Version : OT Anyone follows Tour de France?

07-06-2006, 09:23 AM
Well the title says it all, but this year there is a great addition:

You can actualy follow the progress with Google Earth.

I hope the link works:

Tour de France (http://bbs.keyhole.com/ubb/showflat.php/Cat/0/Number/408274/an/0/page/0)

07-06-2006, 09:51 AM
I am not interested in the tour or in any bicycle race. I believe they don't ride on bicycles but on drugs. Not only the cyclists of course, the whole sports world is messed up because of the doping.

07-06-2006, 03:49 PM
I disagree with the above statement.
As a former racing cyclist we were always tested!
Cycling has a bad reputation because they were one of the first to test competitors and so people were caught.
This had led to testing in other sports, Athletics is a prime example, were the fact of doping has led to many competitors getting caught and so drugs in sport has had too be recognised.
If you do not test you do not know!

07-06-2006, 05:07 PM
If I ever go to France I will leave a trail of destruction on that country on my passage... I would destroy everything on that country but computers and SH3 copies http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/784.gif

Well seriously, I couldn't be less interested in a bicyle ride, even knowing my father sells them http://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_rolleyes.gif

07-06-2006, 07:11 PM
I follow the Tour de France somewhat but don't follow it as much as I would if I understood the rules of the race better. I completely don't understand the team concept. http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/blink.gif

One man, one bike, why are you on a team?

07-06-2006, 07:50 PM
That`s the whole beauty of it.
In some way (in flat stages at least) when breakaway happens it is up to the teams to decide wether they will hunt the escapee(s) down or let them go and win the stage.
It all comes down to jerseys.

1.Yellow for overall classification
2.Green for the best sprinter
3.Polka dot for the best climber
4.White for the best young rider

In short. Having a rider in one of those jerseys is a huge publicity and above all it earns money.

In addition there are points to be won for intermediate sprints and climbs as well as time bonuses.

So basicaly every breakaway disrupts a peloton to a point when they have to act. The teams without a cyclist among the escapees and with good sprinters will work at the front in order to catch the breakaway group and thus creating an oportunity for their best sprinter to be draged in their slipstream to the last kilometer where the battle begins in ernest.

The mountain stages are the most interesting since that`s where the Tour is won or lost.

However there are also team time trials (one stage) and individual time trials (one flat and one mountain stage), which means that in order to win the Tour you need to be a good allrounder and have a decent team to back you up.

In case of a puncture you drop out of peloton and it takes a lot of effort to get back. That`s when your team mates come into play. They will wait for you and then drag you back.

There is a lot more the this brief explanation.
At first I didn`t see much point in racing for 215 kilometers in a group and then dash for the finish line, but once you get to grips with sofisticated mechanics of the race you can truly enjoy this sport.

Perhaps it would help you to watch a stage or two to let you forget about football for a while.
This overall rant does you no good. http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/16x16_smiley-wink.gif

07-09-2006, 08:58 AM
Originally posted by Bucketlung:
I follow the Tour de France somewhat but don't follow it as much as I would if I understood the rules of the race better. I completely don't understand the team concept. http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/blink.gif

One man, one bike, why are you on a team?

Your teammates ride in front of you for several reasons. First, to protect you from crashes while riding in the peleton and second so that you can draft off of them. The person in the front is doing all of the work while biking into the wind. The person behind can draft off of them and conserve up to 30% of their energy so that they can be fresh for the last portion of the race whether it be a flat stage or a mountaintop finish. The team can also be used to chase down breakaways from the peloton.

Biking is 75% strategy and 25% physical effort.

07-09-2006, 03:26 PM
Originally posted by Messervy:
Anyone follows Tour de France? Yes. My interest started in the 70's with the greatest cyclist of my time, Eddy Merckx. In those days, we went to the local bicycle shop to get the race results. It was only in the 80's, and Greg Lemond, that you could see some occasional coverage on ABC's Wide World of Sports here in the states. Today, with the internet, you can follow just about any race live, including the spring classics.

Professional cycling was one of the first sports to begin policing itself for doping. The Tour of 1998 demonstrated that the riders were not a group of choir boys. It seems those lessons are still being learned.

For me, the Tour de France is like a three week television soap opera. Every day there is a new story line, drama and controversy, culminating on the Champs-Elysees. My greatest admiration is held for the riders, who physcially suffer during their time in the saddle.

07-09-2006, 04:13 PM
Tommorow will be a boring day - rest day. http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/51.gif

07-14-2006, 09:11 AM
Going back to the post about the need for a team.

As another poster said you save a lot of energy by riding in the slipstream, so the main contenders use a team to help them be in good condition at key points (e.g. bottom of long climb, beginning of a sprint etc).

Also, different riders are better at different things - Davitamon has Robbie McEwen who is v. good at short sprints on the flat, and Cadel Evans who is good for climbing. Since it is difficult for one rider to be good at all disciplines, having mulitple riders in a team, allows the team to mitigate the risk of losing their one good rider and basically being out of the race in addition to allowing them to fight for multiple honours in the race.

Bear in mind that teams race for stage wins/points (Green Jersey), mountain tops (called King of the Mountains - Polka Dot jersey) and the overall Yellow jersey (shortest time over the whole Tour as won by Lance Armstrong) for individuals, and there is a team standings race going on too.

As a side note, the use of teams and drafting was not always allowed in the Tour De France - I can't remember when it was legalised though. Prior to that, you could be disqualified for drafting behind another rider...

The use of team work and tactics makes the racing more interesting - there are a number of variables to consider when deciding whether your team should "pull" (i.e. put in extra effort) and set a pace.

As for the point on drugs, well, cycling is a little strange at the moment. Many top names were disqualified from this tour before it started. The reason? Their names are associated with a suspected doping doctor.

How are their names associated? Well they appeared in some of the doctor's files.

However, at this stage, there is no evidence that the riders listed did in fact use doping, it is simply a suspicion and the investigation continues. To my mind, a doping doctor might well mention top names in his files either as possible clients, or because they perform well and he requires a knowledge of the sport...

This must be unique in sport - for cyclists it appears, the mere suspicion of drug use is enough to get you disqualified, regardless of what the truth is. If that standard were applied to all athletic sports, very few would have any competitors left at all...

Looking forward to the Alps now!


07-15-2006, 12:14 PM
I really have no like for the sport. Living in Redmond Washington (cycling capitol of the Nation) I get very tired of having to slow down because some moron biker is in my lane. I have actually devised a method of getting them out of my way involving a Coast Guard issue airhorn http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/59.gif

In all fairness I have no problem with them riding next to me, I say if bikers want to ride let 'em - but when they try to act as if they are part of the traffic pattern, I get really mad.