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Old 9th July 2015, 19:22   #46
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@mp417 - Amazing details and brilliant coverage of the tour from you, it is fair to say that is probably the best updates of the tour in India, quick prediction - who do you think will win the tour this year
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Old 9th July 2015, 23:56   #47
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Stage 6 Results

I could not watch the last 4 kilometers as today's stage extended beyond the program end time of 9 pm. My Tata Sky+ recorded the stage exactly till 9 pm
Lesson learned. Changed the setting to record additional 30 minutes of next program.

First of all, the road and scenery. It was a treat to watch the Normandy coastline. The weather was perfect today with sun shining bright and clear blue sky.

Tour de France 2015: All you need to know-normandy1.jpg

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Tour de France 2015: All you need to know-normandy3.jpg

Tour de France 2015: All you need to know-normandy4.jpg


Coming back to Stage 6 results.

Zdenek Stybar of Etixx-Quick Step wins the stage.

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First big news of stage 6:

The stage was uneventful for most of the part and then something strange happened. Tony Martin wearing the leaders's Yellow jersey was involved in an crash barely one kilometer from finish. After watching the videos multiple time, I think it was his own fault. He crossed the finish line obviously injured and most likely he may pull out of the race. He was reported to have broken collar bone. So it was mixed feeling for Etixx-Quick Step team.

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Second big news of stage 6:

Race leader Tony Martin crashed in the uphill finish on his left shoulder. He took many riders down, including GC favorites Chris Froome, Vincenzo Nibali and Nairo Quintana

But they were all classified with the same time as the accident happened in the last three kilometers. We will have to wait to see if Nibali and Quintana are seriously injured. Chris Froome has confirmed that his injuries are not major.

Third big news of the stage 6:

Daniel Teklehaimanot made history for Africa with taking the polka dot jersey. He is the first African to achieve this. Daniel Teklehaimanot (MTN-Qhubeka) who already won the King of the Mountain competition at the Critérium du Dauphiné last month went on the hunt for the polka dot jersey.

Tour de France 2015: All you need to know-polka.jpg

Last edited by mp417 : 10th July 2015 at 00:08.
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Old 10th July 2015, 12:17   #48
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At the rate cyclists break collarbones (ribs too - but there is nothing that can be done for them - a cyclist has to breathe!), I wonder why someone has not devised something similar to the collarbone protectors that MotoGP guys have built into their leathers.

Another must have I feel, seeing the number of crashes and ripped open cycling tights, is some protection (gel, foam, kevlar, etc.) for the hips, built into the inside of the tights in such a way as not to hinder the pedaling action.

I do not have much hope of Martin rejoining the race today.

Mp417, thanks for explaining the categories of climbs. The next obvious question is, how does one judge/approximate the % gradient without GPS or any such aid?

What % for example would the final gradient be as you take the last left flick to the top of Chandni Chowk?
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Old 10th July 2015, 13:02   #49
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Yes, agree. The jerseys and shorts are wafer thin to protect the skin during the crash. All the athletes (and their sponsors) are trying to be as fast as possible to get maximum aero-dynamic efficiency. This explains their tight and thin clothes.



Martin abandons Tour de France due to fractured collarbone

This is how the accident happened yesterday,
Martin held the race lead until he crashed at the foot of the climb to the finish in Le Havre after touching the rear wheel of a Europcar rider. The bump caused him to swerve into Giant-Alpecin's Warren Barguil, who in turn knocked Vincenzo Nibali (Astana) over. Nairo Quintana (Movistar) was unable to avoid the fallen riders and he, too, crashed, while Chris Froome (Sky) narrowly avoided the pile of fallen riders.

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GPS device would tell you the altitude of the climb.
Just checked on Strava and it shows the gradient % for different segments

Chandni chowk climb from Kothrud side shows 8% gradient at the top most point

Tour de France 2015: All you need to know-chowk.jpg
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Old 10th July 2015, 14:27   #50
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Stage 7 – 10th July 2015

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Stage Map

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Summary of today's stage

Stage 7 from Livarot to Fougères is a wonderful visit of rural France the day after riding along the coast of the English Channel. Starting in Normandy, going through the traditional Mayenne province and the race will end up in Brittany. The hot bed of French cycling awaits the Tour for three days and three totally different stages. The first one is perfect for the sprinters in Fougères, the second one will suit punchy climbers in Mûr-de-Bretagne and the third one is an atypical team time trial with an uphill finish at Plumelec. There have been very few hills in the first six days of the Tour de France, albeit very few opportunities for pure sprinters. André Greipel has won the only real bunch sprint in Amiens. After missing out on the jostle for positions in Le Havre, the green jersey holder is hungry for more, so are Peter Sagan, Alexander Kristoff, Mark Cavendish, Bryan Coquard and Arnaud Démare.


Start City/Location: Livarot, France

End City/Location: Fougeres, France

Local start time: 12:50 pm (4:25 pm IST)

Total Distance: 190.5 kms

Type of stage: Flat
One category 4 climb but nothing special to talk about.

TV Schedule for India
7:10 pm Live on Ten Sports and Ten Sports HD.
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Old 10th July 2015, 22:01   #51
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The voice of Tour de France

I would like to mention about the famous voice of Tour de France. If Richie Benaud is the leader of cricket commentary, Paul Sherwen and Phil Liggett are cycling’s equivalent. I cannot imagine watching the Tour without these gentlemen’s commentary.

Phil Liggett and Paul Sherwen has been together for last 29 years reporting the Tour de France. They not only talk about the cycling but also give a very nice information of all the tourist spots en-route the tour stage. Talking continuously for 4 to 5 hours is not easy and these guys never get tired.

Hats off !!!

Paul Sherwen (left) and Phil Liggett (right)

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Phil Liggett, (born 11 August 1943) is an English commentator and journalist who covers professional cycling. He currently commentates on the Tour de France and bike races for ITV, NBC Sports and SBS. He is a former amateur cyclist and received a professional contract in 1967; instead of turning professional, he saw a future in sports journalism after writing articles in cycling magazines about races in which he participated.

Liggett initially wrote for Cycling magazine, and moved on to do freelance work for The Guardian, the Daily Telegraph and The Observer. In 1997, he was appointed Cycle Sport magazine's international editor. He has also written books on cycle racing.

Liggett has reported on 42 Tours de France, generally alongside fellow veteran cycling commentators and former Tour de France cyclists Paul Sherwen (UK)


Paul Sherwen (born 7 June 1956) is an English former professional racing cyclist. He is now a broadcaster on cycling, notably the Tour de France. He raced in seven editions of the Tour, finishing five, and gained a reputation for his ability to suffer over long mountain stages.


Source: Wikipedia
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Old 11th July 2015, 06:24   #52
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@mp417 both Phil and Paul are great, they however used to be very irritating during the lance Armstrong years, harping on and on about him and his us postal team. Other cyclists such as Jam Ulrich, Joseba Beloki hardly used to get a mention, if you get a chance do catch high lights of last years vuelta, the eurosports commentary is exceptional
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Old 11th July 2015, 08:34   #53
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Eurosports itself as a whole is exceptional. I had the good fortune of catching a MotoGP race covered by them. Even though it was in German, they are simply many planets ahead of anything we get here.
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Old 11th July 2015, 10:56   #54
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Sagan chasing the leader for both yellow and green jerseys. This truly pleases my heart. He will not take the yellow, but the last few years he hasn't even tried to look beyond the green. I'm surprised he isn't dominating in sprints. Miss his "tourminator" bike !
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Old 11th July 2015, 13:15   #55
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Cavendish finally timed his sprint right and got a stage victory. He's messed up twice before and gotten swamped at the end. But he's always there, and always a threat. Just too anxious earlier is my personal opinion.
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Old 11th July 2015, 14:09   #56
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Quote:
Originally Posted by alfafan View Post
@mp417 both Phil and Paul are great, they however used to be very irritating during the lance Armstrong years, harping on and on about him and his us postal team. Other cyclists such as Jam Ulrich, Joseba Beloki hardly used to get a mention, if you get a chance do catch high lights of last years vuelta, the eurosports commentary is exceptional
Quote:
Originally Posted by ebonho View Post
Eurosports itself as a whole is exceptional. I had the good fortune of catching a MotoGP race covered by them. Even though it was in German, they are simply many planets ahead of anything we get here.
Phil and Paul have been doing it for so many years. Phil even defended Lance during the doping scandal. It's that their commentary makes it a good overall experience to watch the Tour. I have not seen eurosports commentary so cannot compare.

Quote:
Originally Posted by reihem View Post
Sagan chasing the leader for both yellow and green jerseys. This truly pleases my heart. He will not take the yellow, but the last few years he hasn't even tried to look beyond the green. I'm surprised he isn't dominating in sprints. Miss his "tourminator" bike !
Sagan has shown tremendous consistency this year. Two second place finishes and three third place finishes. With yesterday's third place, he got the time bonus and jumped into second place in general classification.
He is a great athlete and entertainer. Look at his stunt during earlier tour.

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Quote:
Originally Posted by ebonho View Post
Cavendish finally timed his sprint right and got a stage victory. He's messed up twice before and gotten swamped at the end. But he's always there, and always a threat. Just too anxious earlier is my personal opinion.
King Cavendish is back
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Old 11th July 2015, 14:50   #57
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Stage 7 Results

It was a usual flat stage with an early breakaway containing the Polka dot jersey of Teklehaimanot. The breakaway group was caught by the fast charging peleton around 10 kms to finish. Last kilometer was the awesome fight between the top sprinters. Mark Cavendish scored his 26th stage victory at the Tour de France as he waited for the right moment to out sprint Greipel and Sagan. He hadn't been successful at the Tour since stage 13 in Saint-Amand-Montrond in 2013. It's Etixx-Quick Step's third stage win this year after Tony Martin in Cambrai and Zdenek Stybar in Le Havre.

Giant-Alpecin, FDJ and Katusha successively moved to the front of the bunch for John Degenkolb, Arnaud Démare and Alexander Kristoff respectively but top guns André Greipel, Mark Cavendish and Peter Sagan waited for the right moment to surge. Cavendish found his way back to glory while Froome moved back into the overall lead.

Yesterday’s stage was not covered live on Ten Sports HD due to the cricket tournament

L to R: Kristoff, Cavendish, Greipel, Sagan

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King Cavendish

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Old 11th July 2015, 15:07   #58
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Stage 8 – 11th July 2015

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Profile at finish line

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Stage Map

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Summary of today's stage

With the finish line on a category 3 climb at 7% gradient for two kilometers, things may get interesting in today's stage. Instead of coming straight into the final 2 kms long climb, the riders will arrive from the center of Brittany via a right hand turn hairpin, so the speed will be very low at the beginning of the hill. It's a mental game for the big four, and maybe we should talk about the big five now with the steady performances of Tejay van Garderen. Chris Froome, Contador, Vincenzo Nibali and Nairo Quintana can't hide themselves at Mur-de-Bretagne but it might as well be an opportunity for Peter Sagan to finally put his disappointments about finishing second or third behind. He could wear the yellow jersey before the green.


Start City/Location: Rennes, France

End City/Location: Mur de Bretagne, France

Local start time: 01:00 pm (4:35 pm IST)

Total Distance: 181.5 kms

Type of stage: Mostly Flat with following two climbs

@ 99.5 kms- Col du Mont Bel-Air - 1.5 kilometre-long climb at 5.7% - category 4
@ 181.5 kms - MÛR DE BRETAGNE - 2 kilometre-long climb at 6.9% - category 3

TV Schedule for India
7:05 pm Live on Ten Sports and Ten Sports HD.
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Old 11th July 2015, 15:09   #59
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Greipel in full flow towards the last dash looks positively scary man. I get the feeling he is going to crush the bike with that upper body and those tree trunk thighs. For want of a more politically correct sobriquet, I have dubbed him the White Beast. He is huge as cyclists go. Sagan and Cavendish poor guys standing next to him look pretty diminutive. Proper Germanic Teutonic warrior he is.

Last edited by ebonho : 11th July 2015 at 15:11.
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Old 11th July 2015, 15:51   #60
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ebonho View Post
Greipel in full flow towards the last dash looks positively scary man. I get the feeling he is going to crush the bike with that upper body and those tree trunk thighs. For want of a more politically correct sobriquet, I have dubbed him the White Beast. He is huge as cyclists go. Sagan and Cavendish poor guys standing next to him look pretty diminutive. Proper Germanic Teutonic warrior he is.
He weighs 75 kg, more than most professional cyclist. At 6 feet tall, he is a monster. He looks more like a body builder than a cyclist
Just imagine the power getting generated by those thighs at full pace.

In yesterday's sprint finish, these guys must have touched the top speed of 70 kmph
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