During the ITT at Grenoble yesterday i came across Paul Raats who took photos of me on the finish line in Rome May 2009 , i received one photo but not the ones needed for the blog. During the chat he mentioned a Dutch Event taking place on Alp d'Huez on thursday . He said over 5000 people would be riding to raise funds for a Cancer Cause . Last year over 12 million Euros were raised and this year the target is 20 million !
Today instead of joining the Dauphine i headed south to Bourg Oisans and joined the people mostly wearing Lycra of a blue ,white and red combination . Some had their head sponsor on their kit , others had 2009 or 2010 kit but it was a river of colour . Started climbing at about 9.30 and the first ascent took about 1hr 10 mins but found that i was passing a lot of people on triple chain wheels even so . At the top i discovered that some were into their third ascent of the day , which would explain why i was even passing young guys . Several did pass me but noting the numbers i was able to repass all but two who looked far too professional .
On a later climb i found "hand bikers" and continued to the top but stopped for a chat , as they rested , when i was descending . Appears there were two teams with a couple of solo entries . Any of you used a hand bike ? Well some years ago i did and i am able to tell you that even with training the physical effort is in the realm of 6 to 8 times more difficult than pedalling ! You would not choose to drive a hand bike up once let alone multiple times but i saw three of them beavering away once again as i was on my final climb . Where they find the energy defies imagination but they were well supported by volunteers and well applauded by the bystanders on the route .
On descending for the final time i came across a Tour Group who were having a training camp and had come across to climb Alp d'Huez and ride nearby . One of their number rode through a tunnel on the road to Les2alp and the front wheel dropped into a groove made by the maintainance workers , rather like tram tracks with the same result . Spilled from the bike he took a knock and thus the ambulance trip to Grenoble for 24hrs observation as mandated by French Regulations . Earlier in the day i had thought of riding to Les2alps to lunch with my friends there but time got away .
Before cycling today i was on the internet and posted a new thread about "Tondo" and my suspicion that he was murdered to prevent his testimony . By visiting www.skippyblogging.blogspot.com/heartfeltapology you will see my comments on this Guy's courageous efforts to help Road Race Cycling clean house . CNF has cancelled the thread as if it never existed ! Seems the mushroom farm does not wish the truth to be known ! Slandering ALL cyclists is the name of the game but seeking TRUTH is not a suitable subject !
Reading of the day's action at the dauphine made me realise how colourless a day it was although HTC has once again claimed the victory of the day . Heard the 1800 news where they announced Brad Mc Gee had retained the Yellow & Blue Leaders's jersey and i was even more amused yesterday when Daniel the announcer extraordinaire announced twice Mc Gee rather than Wiggo !
Got to laugh since Brad Mc Gee won the ITT in 2002 with Cookie second and me getting the bulk of the article which followed the headlines on the back page of the Dauphine newspaper the next morning . Mc Gee is here as DS for Saxo Bank and no doubt has been told of these fluffs !