Today’s historic photo of the day: a mountain pass during the 1925 Tour de France. Frenchman Roger Lacolle (Météore) is leading the group (in the left, walking). The rider going the opposite way is a native, not a competitor.
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Bianchi released Marco Pantani edition “Specialissima”, a special bike to celebrate the 20th anniversary of Marco Pantani’s Giro-Tour double. The bike has the iconic celeste-yellow fade paint job, the same color schema of Marco Pantani’s 1998 Bianchi. In 1998, after winning the Giro d’Italia, Pantani rode the yellow and celeste Bianchi Mega Pro XL (serial number H 314-74) in the famous July 27 Grenoble—Le Duex Alpes stage of the 1998 Tour de France. He attacked Jan Ullrich on the Galibier climb and won the stage, taking the race lead. He went on to win the Tour in Paris ahead of 2nd finisher Ullrich and 3rd Bobby Julich.
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Tour de France 2017, the 104th edition’s route has been revealed by the ASO, the organizer of the French grand tour. This year, there will be less time trials (no team trial and a short 13.8 km ITT on the opening day and another 23 km on the penultimate stage, total of 33.8 km (1)) and many famous climbs not included the route, for example there will be no Alpe d’Huez, no Mount Ventoux, etc. Instead, they introduced many new climbs. Like the Vuelta a España, some of the climbs will be short-but-steep, and the mountain stages’ length are reduced. These short stages are probably inspired by Giro d’Italia and Vuelta a España – these grand tours have had many short mountain stages in the recent years, which were full of action from the start (remember the 118.5 km stage 15 of Vuelta 2016, where Contador and Quintana joined the breakaway where Froome got isolated and lost 2:37 to Quintana). The shortest stage of last 30 editions of Tour (except the time trials and the prologues), the 13th stage between Saint-Girons and Foix, which is 100 km (62 mi) is another interesting aspect of this years’ race.
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With the end of Vuelta a España 2016, Lotto–Soudal’s Australian rider Adam Hansen has extended the record of completing most number of consecutive grand tours which already belongs to him.
Continue reading “Adam Hansen Completes 16th Consecutive Grand Tour”
Fausto Coppi and Gino Bartali: two cycling legends of Italy. The rivalry between them is maybe the most famous sporting duel in history. It has been started during the World War II, and continued afterward.
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At the stage 8 of this years’ Tour de France, Chris Froome attacked on the descent. He quickly opened up a gap of a few seconds on his main general classification rivals, including Nairo Quintana. Then he tucked down onto the top tube of his bicycle and spun the 54 chainring with all he had, opening up an even bigger gap in the process. Finally, he won the stage by 13 seconds on his rivals.
A lot of people were astonished to his descending technique. But, in fact, we saw it before.
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In his final year as a pro, Fabian Cancellara got a special-edition Trek Madone for his last Tour de France. The bike is specially painted for him, and it celebrates the Spartacus’ entire career.
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Tour de France is the world’s most popular and prestigious bicycle race. Wining “the Tour” is a great victory for cyclists, as well as groupset producers. Here are the Tour de France Winner Groupsets, since 1937, year by year:
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Rohan Dennis (BMC) beats Greg LeMond’s Tour de France time trial speed record which was set in 1989, at the final time trial in Paris (LeMond won that edition with only eight seconds over the Frenchman Laurent Fignon, the narrowest winning margin in history). Dennis’s time over the 13.8 km course was 14 minutes 56 seconds, clocking an average speed of 55.446 km/h. Dennis also broke the prologue record of Chris Boardman which was set in the 1994 edition, Boardman’s previous record was 55.2 km/h (34.3 mph) set during the 7.2 km prologue of the 1994 Tour in Lille.
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Today’s historic photo of the day: during the penultimate (14th) stage of the 1921 Tour de France, Léon Scieur, the Belgian rider of La Sportive team carries his own wheel to the finish line. Scieur won the 1921 Tour de France when he was 33-year-old, along with stages 3 and 10.
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