Monday, July 25, 2011

Vince Carter at the Tour de France

Every year i meet people who arrive at the Tour de France for the first time and i enjoy watching their reactions to the " Circus " that the TDF has become during the 14 occasions i have ridden the routes .

One night several of us camped in a field and i got asked once again why i don't write a book , fact is the blogs are not well enough attended to justify the expense in time and monies to rave on about the places i have been and the people i have met .

Some of the experiences i have enjoyed have been right off the scale in that i find myself the guest of so many generous people both in their homes and as a guest at the side of the road . It is impossible to relate the generosity of so many people even if i could find the correct words since in many cases these people have put aside their own commitments to help me ! The spread of nationalities and countries is mind boggling as not only Europeans but Asians have treated me so kindly !

Currently i don't seem to be able to post direct to the Blogs and so am using " Posterous " as the Portal so the stories/blogs are repeated in several blogs and for that i apologise .  Hopefully i will discover the problem and solve it quickly !

TODAY i am copying an email into the blog written by Vincent who has ridden the "Routes of the TDF " these past 3 years .

""   Skippy appeared riding from behind me on my first trip to the Tour de France in Monaco 2009 on the TT course . I had camped for 5 days in my first foreign country and the sound of a friendly Australian accent was welcome and after the usual exchange of details , he proceeded on along the course and shortly after i met another Tour devotee George the cyclist , who informed me of Skippy’s long running involvement with all the grand tours .

The power of the event and the challenge to view it while riding the course as much as you can handle got into my head with some power so i returned to the 2010 edition which started in Rotterdam to meet up with George . It was world cup soccer time and Skippy , George , and a new find of George’s , David the German and i took part in the excitement of a game watching the screen at the IYH where I was staying . The dutch won ,the locals where more than pleased it was a happy time to be amongst the revellers.
Over the coming days as gGorge and i rode the course Skippy would appear always loaded up with Skippy’s Legacy which was a special cycling jersey autographed by all the riders of note in the Pro Peloton. Skippy had plans to auction the shirt with proceeds going to his primary interest “ disabled sports people “. Regularly our paths would cross as the tour stages went by.

2011 came around and again i could not resist the Tour of France atmosphere , after riding to the rider presentation and discovering that it was invitation only i settled back in the car park to watch the Team buses roll up with all the tour Champs and Personalities passing by and i felt my 500 km ride was well worth it.
Then a gentle whack from a passing cyclist revelled Skippy once again , after greetings where done Skippy arranged for me to shake the hands of some tour stars Erik Zabel , Cadel Evans , Danilo Hondo ,Chris Horner , Mark Renshaw and others . Even though i am of a mature age , 54 , just to meet these guys was a great thrill and i doubt I’ll forget it ever, this was all down to Skippy , as he is one of the personalities which add to the whole tour experience .


What i should like to do is INVITE others to contribute their stories relating how we have met up  , over the years .


People like my friends in Crest , Brussels , Redom , Montigenevre , Torino and so many more places occasionally visit the blog so i would encourage them to contribute their piece to the Blog .

Now that Vincent has set the ball rolling , who will be next ?









No comments:

Post a Comment