Julian Dean Diary

News & Results

07/8/2004| 0 comments
by Julian Dean

Julian Dean Diary

Tour de France: Stage 3-4.

Tour de France - Stage 3: <?xml:namespace prefix = o ns = "urn:schemas-microsoft-com:office:office" /?>

 

Black Day All Round...

 

For the team and I, it was a pretty shit today. It was always going to be a dangerous day with the cobble sections but for us it went worse than we could?ve imagined and tonight in the hotel, we are all very subdued after yesterday?s high.

 

I was feeling ok - not great - but I managed to come to the cobbles in a good position. I passed through them no problem till the last 500m when I punctured. Once again it was the worst timing. Just before the cobbles, there was a big crash that split the field and although I was in the front group with my puncture, the team car with the wheels was a long way behind. I waited for well over a minute as I stood there helpless on the side of the road and watched the rest of the race come off the cobbles and blow past me. It was a terrible feeling. The race was going away from me and I was still standing there not able to do anything but wait...

 

Eventually, the car came by and gave me a wheel. By this stage the whole field had passed me and I had to chase back to the last group, who were all the victims of the big crash before the cobbles. This group included one of the favourites, Iban Mayo and my team-mate, Thor, wearing the yellow jersey.

 

My hell didn?t stop there though. Because the front of the race had so many riders and had everyone except Mayo, the other teams started to drive it. This made trying to get back to the front of the race pretty much impossible for us as the big teams T-Mobil, USPS and Phonak continued to drive the pace, taking time out of our group with Mayo. Our entire team was in this group so we had to do what we could to keep the gap at a minimum. It was a hard day and I was fisted. I was glad to see the arse end of July 6th.

 

In saying that though, I?m sure Mayo and the rest of Euskatel were feeling way worse than us. Mayo was a very real rival of Lance?s and today he lost over 3 mins which has effectively taken him out of the GC. There has been a lot of opposition to today?s stage with riders and Directors saying that this is the Tour, not a Classic, and there is no reason why a ?mini? Paris-Roubaix should feature in the parcours...

 

After our day today, the team?s moral is on the floor. Completely the opposite of what it was like this time yesterday when we had the jersey. A very sharp reminder of how quickly the highs can turn to lows in the Tour...

 

 

Tour de France - Stage 4:

 

Team Time Trials & The Rain...

 

Two things that I really don?t like at all, rain and

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