My final tweet last night was something along the lines of – what an amazing stage. And it was; full of dramatic moments, great moves, passion and despair. You can’t plan moments like this, and for better or worse, these kind of stages are a large part of why highlights packages can never give you the whole story. Thank you SBS Cycling Central.
Gabriel went all “Will Studd” on us and showed some cheese making, but then went on to ruin all that good work to cook with veal! Hang on is that good or bad? Delicious sure but … Oh, I don’t know anymore, extreme fatigue has set in. I do want to know though if he has any other tools in his kitchen apart from a fork, a teaspoon and a palette knife? #oldskool
When we joined the telecast Jensie had set off by himself, across the gap chasing Kruijswijk from Rabobank. When the motorbike camera man caught up to them I caught my breath when I realised just how close they were to the riders, and Kruijswijk himself looked mighty surprised (Jensie was having an argument with his bike at the time #drink!). What I’m not sure of is was Roy out in front already at this point? Or did he really in fact leave the chasers, pass Jens and Kruijswijk, and then go out on his own? Seems unlikely but that’s what Paul Sherwin and Phil Ligget would have us believe. Anyway there was a large secondary group of chasers between those two and the peloton.
Over the stage we heard a lot about Gallopin’s family and Wiggins’ cycling bonafides, and about how neat the TGV is from Paris to Switzerland (it only takes 2 hours and 40 mins!).
Sky controlled the peloton, with Boassan Hagen doing the pace-making. The large breakaway coloured the day’s riding tactics for a lot of the stage, with effort being balanced against who was in that group and how far behind the yellow jersey they were.
Just as the peloton was passing the field art for this stage (featuring cows) at 99km to go there was a nasty crash that ended the race for Sammy Sanchez and quite possibly his defence of his gold medal from the road race in Beijing. Terribly distressing.
Eventually most of the breakies were clawed back into the peloton but one made a brave (or perhaps foolhardy move) and it paid off for Frenchman Thibaut Pinot, youngest rider in the race, who crossed the line first for the stage win. Cowdel followed in second place but wasn’t able to shake off Wiggins, Nibali, Fränk Schleck or Denis Menchov.
Cowdel is still 10 secs behind Wiggins, with Nibali a further 7 seconds behind. I expect Wiggins to have a better TT than Cowdel so there’s still a lot of work for him to do in week two. Looks like we’ll see Radioshack-Nissan in the yellow helmets next.
#trolldj split the twitter peloton with the choice of the Shampoo track “We’re in Trouble” to play along with footage of the crash after the next ad break. A bit too soon to play a high energy, cutesy tune? The next choice was Garbage’s “Push” and was much more roundly enjoyed by the twittersphere.
Also, I haven’t noticed the cranes before – cranes … everywhere.
Vache Watch (thanks to all who tweet us up with your Vache sightings)
There were quite a few more cow sightings than I thought there would be.
51.4 Herd of Simmenthal hoping to end up in Swiss chocolate, not curdled.
Sausages, comté, and cows as eyes!