Thursday, 16 August 2007


Something usually goes wrong on tour but the 'something goes wrong' part is getting a little out of hand. Not only are we a rider and swanny short, we're also a team car and DS short after a small accident in race convoy today. A domino effect saw Broso run up the arse of the Chinese race vehicle, they drove away with a small scratch and we WALKED away with a bumper, leaving the rest roadside. The American's are back in yellow, keeping the pace tempo for the majority of the 150kms, an average of 38kms/hr sort of tells that story though. At 60kms Lou went domestique style back for bidons but chilly weather meant we stored them down our jerseys. This however didn't prevent others from staging a European 'pisso'... my very first! By far the most exciting part of the race was through feed when a Chinese rider ploughed headfirst, rather fast, into a solid tree roadside :(

The legs must have felt the distance and the longer climbs in the second half of the race, because I found myself looking down to assure I hadn't punctured in the closing kilometre. A tight-right hander preceded a seated sprint, the legs were very gone! So I was impressed when I came past Tiff in the home straight to finish 9th, Tiff 16th. Kate is back to 5th in QOM after running second on the harder climb of the day with no change to GC. A busy evening followed. I was selected for random drug testing before navigating the van with Josie to our next housing. Manny then carried out DS duties over dinner and soigneur massages before bed, knowing that for the first time I hadn't been screwed with rooming arrangements. Massage comments: I tried to be strong and handle the pain while Dazza thrashed my legs, I'm not sure it was such a good thing...

Results: La Route De France Feminine, Stage 5, Saint Menehloude - Vittel, 150.4 kms