The Tour de France or the Tour de Bore

News & Results

07/16/2012| 0 comments
by Neil Browne
Roadcycling.com continues its 2012 Tour de France analysis. I'm already calling it - Bradley Wiggins wins the Tour de France 2012.
Roadcycling.com continues its 2012 Tour de France analysis. I'm already calling it - Bradley Wiggins wins the Tour de France 2012.

The Tour de France or the Tour de Bore

I'm already calling it - Bradley Wiggins wins the Tour de France 2012.


It was another usual day in the Tour de France: the peloton rolls out of town, a breakaway is formed, they are caught and the bunch sprint is activated.

Sure not the most riveting of days, but the sprinters deserve a chance at some glory after a couple of days in the mountains.

On paper stage 13 looked "easy," but the finish line was at the top of a short climb that Bjarne Riis described as "heavy." In fact the average gradient was ten percent. And then there are the crosswinds which could rip the peloton apart. There truly are no easy days on the Tour.

With less than a kilometer remaining Bradley Wiggins lead out his guy Edvald Boasson Hagen. But there was no stopping the sprinter they affectionately call "the gorilla" - Monsieur Andre Greipel of Germany.

With a throw to the line Greipel pipped Peter Sagan for the stage win - his third in this year's Tour de France and 16th victory of the year.

While Boasson Hagen got the lead-out from his boss, Team Sky's marquee sprinter Mark Cavendish trailed in eight minutes later. Remember that Cav was trying to cut weight like a runway model in the hopes of getting over the climbs. That's not working out as the Manx Missile was a dud on the category 3 climb that lead up to the finish. I say it's time for Cav to hit the cake shop and put on a few kilos.

Stage 14 from Limoux to Foix was also a day that on paper didn't seem like it would shake up the G.C. Yet due to an act of vandals it could have reshaped the 2012 Tour de France.

A break of five, at their maximum got a 15 minute advantage on the main peloton. None of the riders were a threat to Bradley Wiggin's yellow jersey, so they were allowed an extra-long leash. Peter Sagan had wisely infiltrated the breakaway to ensure himself more points in that competition.

The five crested the final climb of the day, the category 1 Mur de Peguere. The stage winner was undoubtedly going to be one of these riders. The television cameras returned to the main peloton and I had to rub my eyes in disbelief - Mark Cavendish was at the front of the peloton setting the tempo on the climb!

My immediate thought was this is a sign of the apocalypse! Cav, AKA The Manx Missile, is not a climber. He proved that yesterday in no uncertain terms. But lo and behold, there he was. However, just before I rushed to my basement with emergency rations as I fully expected the dead to rise or for it to start raining frogs, Cav popped and disappeared out of view. Yes, it looked like things were returning to normal - or were they?

As the peloton went over the top of the climb Cadel Evans suddenly pulled over - he had a rear flat. His teammate Tejay van Garderen hadn't noticed his team leader's predicament and was ahead on

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