The final cowntdown!

Le Tour is almost upon us!  Check your fridge, unfurl your slanket/snuggie, print off your bingo cards, have the Tour Guide handy, tune your TV to SBS (and hide the remote if you are anywhere near non-cycling-and-cow people) and fire up the internet.

Over the next three and a bit weeks we will be posting daily previews for each stage,  giving Team Vaches a heads-up as to which cows to look out for.  After each stage (taking into account sleep-ins and restorative brunches) we will post a rundown on any outstanding cow spots or bovine-related incidents.

There are a number of ways you can make sure you don’t miss any of the exciting cow developments:


Pyrenees Cheese and Wine

Sometimes  I wonder why I write this blog… all for fun… no remuneration… oh… umm… oops – yes well – umm… now that you mention it… yes that *is* in fact the  aftermath of a recent wine and cheese tasting – all in the name of Les Vaches of course.   Ahem.


So – one of our fabulous supporters, DiscoverVin, knows an awful lot about the wines of South West France, around those wonderful Pyrenees mountains. The Tour is travelling anti-clockwise this year so around Stage 10 (July 12) the tour will head down towards the Pyrenees.

So you’ve got a bit of time to get organised – but DiscoverVin and our good selves have done some of the hard work for you.  Yes – what to drink and what cheese to eat!  The wines come in a handy six-pack, ready for you. The cheese was chosen with the assistance of Anthony Femia, cheesemonger (and proud cow-respondent!) who takes care of the cheese at the Richmond Hill Cafe and Larder.

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Don’t like Mondays?

If you are suffering from a bit of Mondayitis today,  get used to it –  the next three Mondays are going to be even tougher.  That’s right –  le Tour starts this weekend,  so get your circadian rhythms in order for some late night viewing. To get yourself into the right frame of mind,  we’d like to hear about your favourite and/or memorable Tour viewing moments.

Head over to our Facebook page.  Add your comment and tag Calvin S Wine in your response and,  if you are one of the first 21,  he’ll send you a stubby holder and give you free shipping on an order containing cheese from iDELI (Australia only) for the duration of the tour.

Tour of Rwanda

You might not recognise many of the names in the start list of the Tour of Rwanda,  which took place last year. It was not one of the races on the schedule for this year’s Tour hopefuls,  but where else are you going to see anything quite as magnificent as the Ankole-Watusi?

Perhaps an enterprising French cattleman has started a herd somewhere in Provence.  Spotting these cows in the countryside would give Paul Sherwen the perfect opportunity to fill some airtime with African proverbs.

Give a man a fish and he’ll eat for a day;  give him a cow and there might even be leftovers.

Okay,  I made that one up…  maybe Paul can share a cow-centred African proverb or two?

Getting ready for Le Tour Part II

Hello there to all our new cow loving,  cycle-toting friends!

Three weeks to go …  just about.  I’m starting to get excited about the individual stages of the tour,  starting with our jumping off spot,  le Grand Depart,  at Passage du Gois on the Atlantic coast in the North West of France. The start sees the pack traversing a bluestone causeway that is cut by high tides. If I was organising Le Tour I might be tempted to pop this bit in at the end of a stage,  to see who gets there before they have to swim across. (That there is quite possibly why I’m not organising Le Tour I guess).  Here’s a link to the glossy start page on the official web site.

Injera has provided some great practical advice for preparing yourself for this year’s tour,  I thought I’d follow up with some quick notes on how technology (well really,  twitter) can provide excellent insight into what goes on behind the scenes of the tour.

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One month to go

If you haven’t been out on the bike climbing hills regularly it’s probably too late to start training for Galibier now,  but there is still some preparation you can do before the Tour starts.

Clear your IQ/DVR

Most of us will need to function at work during the three weeks of the Tour,  so this means watching all stages live might not be the work-life balance your employer has in mind.  Delayed viewing comes with the risk of having stage results spoiled,  but at least you’ll be able to pause for cow spotting.
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