July 9, 1925: in this historic photo, the legendary Italian cyclist Ottavio Bottecchia approaches to the finish line at Tour de France 1925 stage 13, a 275 km going from Nice to Briançon. The monster stage had featured three major ascents, all above two thousand meters: Col d’Allos (2,250 m), Col de Vars (2,108 m) and Col d’Izoard (2,360 m). Fellow Italian Bartolomeo Aymo (sometimes written Bartolomeo Aimo), the Alcyon teammate of Bottecchia’s rival Nicolas Frantz won the stage in 13h 5 min 3sec. Bottecchia finished in second at 9min 57sec, 3 min 40 sec ahead of Frantz, who finished in third, and reinforced his yellow jersey. Bottecchia, who had also won the previous years’ edition and becoming the first Italian to win the Tour de France, started 1925 Tour by winning the first stage, then he won 6th and 7th stages, and made his Tour victory complete by also winning the last stage.
Continue reading Ottavio Bottecchia, Tour de France 1925 Stage 13
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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Today’s historic photo of the day: on Wednesday, July 5, Frenchman Jean Alavoine (Peugeot-Wolber) crosses over the Col d’Aspin during the Tour de France 1922, stage 6. It was a monster 326 kilometer stage from Bayonne to Luchon, which contains three major climbs: Col d’Aubisque, Col d’Aspin and Col de Peyresourde. Alavoine won the stage in 14 hours 28 minutes and 44 seconds. The second finisher, Victor Lanaers (Automoto) came 16 minutes 43 seconds behind. The overall winner, Firmin Lambot (Peugeot) came third, at 31:05.
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Mûr de Bretagne climb is a focal point for cyclists in France’s most cycling-obsessed region, Brittany. It is short but tough, actually the first half of the climb is much tougher, where the gradient usually stays above 10%. The second half is much easier. The climb is 2.21 km long. Over this distance, you gain 144 meters of elevation. Thus, the average percentage is 6.5%.
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Tour de France 2018 stages and route (the 105th edition of the race) has been announced by the race organizer ASO (Amaury Sport Organisation). The race will start with a 189 km flat stage on July 7, 2018, Saturday. The finish line will be in Champs-Élysées, traditionally, on July 29, 2018, Sunday. This year, the Tour will again visit the cobblestones of the Paris-Roubaix, and the mythical climb of Alpe d’Huez as well as gravel roads and some cols that never climbed in the race before.
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Le Ride is a cycling documentary, which follows two cyclists, Phil Keoghan (also the director of the film) and his friend Ben Cornell as they attempt to recreate the original route of the 1928 Tour de France. Averaging 240km a day for 26 days, Phil and Ben traverse both the unforgiving mountains of the Pyrenees and the Alps, on original vintage steel racing bikes with no gears and marginal brakes.
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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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Bianchi released Marco Pantani edition “Specialissima”, a special bike to celebrate 20th anniversary of Marco Pantani’s Giro-Tour double. The bike has the iconic celeste-yellow fade paint job, the same color schema of 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.
Continue reading Tour de France 2017 Route
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