Tour de France!

5 Jul
Dear Readers,
July has been the most wonderful month to sit on my ass while rehabbing my right knee and watching all the most wonderful sports! Olympic Try-Outs, Wimbledon…I can only imagine the great inspiration for Dave from “The Blog Of Funny Names”
The Tour de France!
Is anyone enjoying the Tour de France as much as I am? It is an amazing sporting event, a feat of human endurance, passion and persistence. And watching the Tour de France I have been introduced to a world/sport of which I knew nothing about. All the while traveling through the beautiful French countryside and listening to British commentators with their wonderful civilized accents intone remarks such as –
“Now that won’t make his body feel good tomorrow morning.”  
“Such a nasty little pace.”  
“One of the leaders has just communicated he will be taking a break, lets call it a natural break.” 
“If this was ten years ago he would have gone whipping by him but he is getting a little long in the tooth.”…Without leaving the comforts of my own home!


For those who are unfamiliar with the history of the Tour de France (like me) 
“The line between insanity and genius is said to be a fine one, and in early 20thcentury France, anyone envisaging a near-2,500-km-long cycle race across the country would have been widely viewed as unhinged. But that didn’t stop Géo Lefèvre, a journalist with L’Auto magazine at the time, from proceeding with his inspired plan. His editor, Henri Desgrange, was bold enough to believe in the idea and to throw his backing behind the Tour de France. And so it was that, on 1 July 1903, sixty pioneers set out on their bicycles from Montgeron. After six mammoth stages (Nantes – Paris, 471 km!), only 21 “routiers”, led by Maurice Garin, arrived at the end of this first epic.”

Today’s 99th Tour de France (Saturday, June 30 to Sunday July 22, 2012) is made up of 20 stages with different terrains and with a total distance of 3,497 Kilometers’ with teams of professional bikers. Those are backed by sponsors (to name a few) Radio Shack-Nissan, Garmin-Sharp pay anywhere from 5 million up to 20 million for the top teams in one year. This event defies sanity by any definition, they must check out their brains and take incredible risks to maneuver themselves and hence their team for positioning through a large pack (peloton) of speeding competitors, speeding team cars, motorcycles and over zealous spectators. The first week of the tour is mixed with narrow roads, high speeds and brutal crashes (broken legs and mangled stitched bodies.) Men in brightly colored bike clothing sucking goop from plastic throwaway tubes for their lunch as they continue peddling on top of a narrow bike seat. These men have the thinnest arms with the narrowest hips. I think this could be the next diet craze. The Tour de France diet – strap on a helmet, mounts a bike for 20 days and pull your meals out from the back of your pants. Just the thought has taken my appetite away…success!   
After watching the Tour for a few days one start to get to know the different personalities of the racers. Peter Sagan (22 yrs. old) won Stage 1 and Stage 3 has enjoyed showing off his fun side and does a little dance on his bike at the finish line, He says, “It’s a thing I’d discussed with my teammates about what kind of gesture I’d do on the line,” said Sagan, who rides for Liquigas-Cannondale. “Everybody said, ‘Do a Forrest Gump,’ because when he was told to run, he ran. And when I’m told to win, I win.”
It boggles the mind the teamwork that takes place. Everyone on the team has a job, which involves positioning team leaders to win stages, sprints, hill climbs etc. gaining points along the way to become a little closer to winning the Tour. For example, drafting in which one man sprints with everything he has to keep the leader behind him (braking wind for him) protecting and preserving leader strength to create a winning sling shoot effect as the leader now takes over first position at the exact moment of correct execution.
A huge shock during Stage 4 (July 4) one of the leaders Mark Cavendish (won Stage 2) found himself unprotected my his team while still in the peloton became an easy target for his competitors and ended up on the ground in a crash and hence unable to take the expected lead, causing uncertainty in his very unaware teammates; everyone has a job to do, Cavendish was to win stage 4 as a sprinter collecting more points for his team. 
Fabian Cancellara of Switzerland remains the overall leader (Yellow Jersey) for the forth-straight day.
Asklotta and staff will MIND YOUR BUSINESS today with some advice before grabbing the remote to jump over to watch the Williams sisters play doubles…
Tonight at 8 PM pull up a chair and join me for the Tour de France
…. Get your children outside riding their bikes NOW. You never know someday they could get paid 20 million dollars to ride around the world for a career in professional biking! Now how do you spell RETIREMENT? 
Again, it has been my pleasure to tell you what to do and what NOT to do!
Kindest regards,
President and CEO

4 Responses to “Tour de France!”

  1. Liz T. July 5, 2012 at 11:30 am #

    Yes, I have been watching the Tour de France! I compare their rhythmic pedaling to watching violin bows moving in unison during an orchestra concert. I am fascinated by these incredible cyclists. I love everything about the sport — even the goo — and the riders put “Magic Mike” to shame!

    • asklotta July 5, 2012 at 2:06 pm #

      Yes, Yes, Yes! so poetic of you…AND the beautiful bright peloton colors, like a bouquet of flowers! xo

  2. tenacious04 July 5, 2012 at 3:13 pm #

    Enough you two! All that rhythm, fluid motion and soothing British commentary was enough to lull both Tom and I to sleep last Sunday afternoon :-)). Rivals bowling and golf for a guaranteed nap in my book!! Going out for a bike ride now … THAT’S exhilarating!

    • asklotta July 5, 2012 at 4:14 pm #

      Hahaha…I’ve also been so enjoying sailing around with you this summer. Tenacious looks beautiful and once again, don’t have to leave the comforts of my own home! teeheehee

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