Sorry about the content in my Stage 5 post, or lack there-of. And for not posting yesterday for Stage 6 – internet connectivity problems, bla, bla, bla. Today I’m Live Blogging the race from the Jones Avenue branch of the Toronto Public Library.
Today I’m starting at 11:42 AM EST (5:42 PM CET). The race is almost over – but that’s where all the fun happens anyway, isn’t it?
Tour de France 2011 Stage 7 Profile - Le Mans to Châteauroux (218 km)
Tour de France 2011 Stage 7 - Le Mans to Châteauroux (218 km)
Today’s stage race officially started at 12:22 CET (6:22AM EST).
11:44 AM EST
16 km to go. Four riders are 26 seconds in the lead, now 17, their going to be caught obviously. For the record they are: Urtansun, DeLage, Meersman and Talabardon. 10 seconds now. These four have been out in front from the first minute of the race; sad to see this happen every stage, the break-always never seem to work, why do they bother? One wonders.
The four persistent ones have been caught by a Peloton consisting of 90 or so riders – 80 more are about 2 minutes behind. There was a bad crash earlier today and that is why the Peloton is split in half as it is. Rider Wiggins is out of the Tour de France, as are 5 other riders, because they finished over the time limit yesterday. I’ll list those out of the race for you later in this post. I believe we are down to 172 riders – but don’t quote me on that.
On these flat stages it’s all about sprinter’s abilities and team work drafting, and rotating out of the wind-breaker position at your proper time. Team HTC is in control of the tip of the Peloton as we close in on the finish. Under 1 km to go!
Mark Cavendish team HTC wins! All 9 riders of HTC lead the Peloton to catch the escapees, and then paced the group all the way to the finish – their motivation was to control the race and launch their star sprinter at the line. Mark Cavendish’s team-mates Goss and Renshaw were the last two to take the front. Goss powered the tip of the Peloton in the final rotation and then ‘slung’ him across the line in the final metres – as planned.
The mass of riders in a Peloton are more than just a wind break in my opinion, they create an energy field of some kind that actually holds those riders in the group, in it. They become carried along by the mass, like gravity holds a moon in orbit, but not the way we currently understand gravity. This is another force, an electro-magnetic one perhaps – perhaps dark matter, that not-understood missing half of all the matter in the universe.
When a team ‘leads out’ from the tip of the Peloton as team HTC did so beautifully today they create a tip of a spear that uses the inertia of the mass of the rest of the riders to extend the leading edge of that mass. A good example of this is the way a shaped charge that is rigged for cutting through steal behaves, the colliding vectors of explosive force create a needle-point of extremely high energy – a vector point that resembles the tip of the Peloton in a cycling race. With synchronized team work they push out ahead of the group borrowing energy one from another, but as well as from the entire mass of riders, they speed still faster to the line.
A thing of beauty – and a physics thought experiment at the same time!
see letour.fr 2011 for pages and pages of content.
This will be a Live Blog. The race starts at 6:05 7:50 AM EST (12:05 PM CET).
Tour de France 2011 - Stage 5 Profile
Tour de France 2011 Stage 5 Map (click on image to go to letour.fr page)
Thanks for visiting. Comments are welcome, I’ll try to respond, or answer any questions you may have with-in one day.
I’ve been having trouble with my internet connection the past few days; for now that is resolved – thanks to the Toronto Public Library free Wi-Fi connection! (Google Map of all the hot-spots – every branch now has a server.) Barring any unforeseen problems, I will be Live Blogging all the Stages of the Tour de France 2011.
6:29 AM EST
Good morning racing fans!
I miss-read the start time on the letour.fr site last night – Stage 5 starts at 7:50 AM EST (13:50 CET).
Tour de France 2011 Live Widget - Stage 5 Start: 7:50 EST | 13:50 CET
Tour de France 2011 Stage 4 - Lorient to Mûr-de-Bretagne (172.5 km)
The race today started with a neutral zone warm-up, no racing allowed, but due to slick conditions due to rain there was a crash. Everyone got back up on their bikes and the race began at 7:09 AM EST (13:09 CET). Thirteen minutes later an escape group of 5 riders formed. After half an hour they created a gap of 4:55 seconds before the Peloton drew them back with a strategic burst of power.
The escapes have been caught, they’re gamble foiled. Contador, Husovd are near the front of the Pelaton with 3 km to go!
George Hincapie, Gesink, Gilbert, Evans – among many – are near the front.
Evans wins over Contador by an inch! (2.46 cm). Vinokourov third.
Thor Hushovd holds on to the Yellow (Evans is 1 second behind him).
Evans gets the Polka-dot.
And Jose Joaquin Rojas won a sprint somewhere along the line today, he wears Green tomorrow, riding for Movistar Team (???) – like he did today. Who are those guys? (Wikipedia says…).
The Garmin-Cervélo Team has done it again on their mountian-bike-looking, new Cervélo ‘S5′ road racing bikes. This time it’s Tyler Farrar who wears the Yellow after a long flat race that favoured the sprinters and the best team at strategy.
Here’s the finish, watch Tyler Farrar drafting and then he swings around to the win – his team-mate celabrates in the background having launched him to the line perfectly! Nice video.
A Team Time Trial: Les Essarts to Les Essarts – 23 km
A Live Blog
8:30 AM EST
In the Team time trial Team is spelt with a capital – each team will start the race seven minutes apart like in a rally race – each team will start 9 riders, the 5th rider in each team to cross the finish marks that teams time. Drafting, spelling each other off and team strategy are all important on this flat 23 km route.
A note on yesterdays stage win by Philippe Gilbert. I mistakenly said that Gilbert wears three jerseys at the end on Stage 1 – that was incorrect, one rider cannot wear three – so the next best riders in each category are awarded the jersey. As over all race leader, Gilbert wears Yellow today, Cadel Evans get the Green, sprint champion’s shirt and Thor Hushovd gets to wear the best climbers Polka-dot attire.
There are 22 teams in this years Tour de France, the teams will start the Time Trial according to the team’s ranking after Stage 1. Team Saxo-Bank SunGard finished last as a team yesterday so they go first, they depart at 14:30 CET – 8:30 AM EST – the first ranked team after Stage 1 is Team Omega Pharma – Lotto, they will start their time trial at 16:57 CET – 10:57 AM EST.
22. 8:30 Team Saxo Bank Sungard is on the coarse.
This Alberto Contador’s team, he was caught in the huge pile up in the Peleton with 9 km from the finish yesterday – the team decided to finish the stage together – so their aggregate times put them in last place.
21. 8:37 Euskaltel – Euskadi is off.
20. 8:44 Vacansoleil-DCM Pro Cycling is next
19. 8:51 AG2R La Mondiale
18. 8:58 Saur-Sojasun
17. 9:05 Rabobank Cyling Team
16. 9:12 FDJ
15. 9:19 Liquigas – Cannondale
14. 9:26 Team Garmin-Cervélo
13. 9:33 Team Europcar
12. 9:40 Quickstep Cycling Team
11. 9:47 Movistar Team
10. 9:54 Pro Team Astana
9. 10:01 Team Katusha
8. 10:08 Sky ProCycling
7. 10:15 Team Lampre – ISD
6. 10:22 COFIDIS, Le Crédit en Ligne
5. 10:29 Team RadioShack
4. 10:36 HTC-Highroad
3. 10:43 Team Leopard – Trek
2. 10:50 BMC Racing Team
1. 10:57 Team Omega Pharma – Lott
Team Garmin-Cervélo has posted the best time thus far – 24′ 48″, or 55.6 km/hour! They are 12 seconds (“) ahead of Rabobank and 28″ ahead of Saxo Bank. Team Sty Procyling is on the coarse and are the favourite today – at the quarter marker they posted a better time than Garmin-Cervélo – 0.98 seconds faster…
At the 2nd marker, the half way point in the circle, Team Sky ProCycling is 4″ behind Garmin-Cervélo; now they turn around into the wind for the last half back to the finish.
Sky ProCycling has finished with a 55.5 km/hour rate – Garmin-Cervélo still holds first place.
The letour.fr “Tour de France Live” commentator thinks Garmin- Cervélo may win the stage. The 5th best team , and 5th last to start today Team RadioShack is well off the pace in 5th position at the quarter way milestone.
Team RadioShack finishes well, just 10″ back of the Leaders. (updated @ 11:22)
1. Garmin-Cervélo 00', 00" - 24:48
2. BMC Racing Team 00', 04" - 24:52
3. Sky ProCycling 00', 04" - 24:52
4. HTC-Highroad 00', 05" - 24:53
5. Team Leopard 00', 05" - 24:53
6. Team RadioShack 00', 10" - 24:58
7. Robobank 00', 12" - 25:00
8. Team Saxo Bank 00', 28" - 25:16
9. Pro Team Astana 00', 32" - 25:20
Team Omega Pharma is +26 seconds at the quarter marker a miracle now can only upset Garmin-Cervélo!
Team Omega Pharma – Lott is too far back to win.
Thor Hushovd takes the Yellow Jersey for Team Garmin-Cervélo as they finish first in Stage 2.
Fastest Bike in the world: Toronto’s Cervélo – Vroomen & White Designs (and the riders may have something to do with it as well).
Team Omega Pharma finishes +39″.
After 2 Stages, some individual placements of interest:
Stage 2 Rider After Stage 1
1. HUSHOVD Thor (3)
6. SCHLECK Frank (12)
7. CANCELLARA Fabian (18)
10. SCHLECK Andy (33)
13. HINCAPIE George (60)
18. CAVENDISH Mark (69)
22. LEIPHEIMER Levi (38)
30. GILBERT Philippe (1)
61. HESJEDAL Ryder (96)
75. CONTADOR Alberto (82)
176. FARRAR Tyler (181)
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