miércoles, 31 de octubre de 2012

Mont Ventoux 2013. A giant with a long history.

Photo  www.guardian.co.uk

The giant of Provence will be one of the simbols of next year´s route of the Tour de France. It will be the finish of a long and flat stage

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The profile of the climb:

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It is a very difficult climb and the last part is exposed to the wind, so sometimes is difficult to attack and if you lose contact you will find difficult to close the gaps.

The stage in 2013 is  flat , so it is supposed to be a stage for brave riders and breakaways. On the other hand it is a very long stage and that is an important point to take into account. The slopes of the Ventoux can be a cemetery for some favourites. It is not probably a day to win the Tour , but if you have a bad day, you can say good bye to the yellow jersey.

We will probably see Alberto Contador, Chris Froome, Andy Schleck and several good riders climbing its steep slopes next year. The stage is long and flat and all will be decided in the 21 kilometers of the climb.

If I have to bet I will say it is a good climb for Andy Schleck ( if he recovers his shape), but the winner will be a breakaway member. Riders such as Voeckler, Luis León, Fedrigo, Moncutie, Chavanel, etc.....have a good opportunity to have his name written next to some myths of this sport like Gaul, Merckx or Pantani.

Another important thing I would like to say, that is not possible this year because Givors is so far of the Ventoux, and knowing that there are no difficult climbs near it, oranizers should think about a double pass.......the same as they have done this year with Al pe D´Huez.

The first climb would be a good moment to increase the rythm and the second one to break the race.
For other edition and coming from Carpentras a double climb from Bedoin could be possible:

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Route with tracks4bikers:


You can close the two climbs if we use different faces of the climb, but those last 90 kilometers would be very interesting and a good innovation.

And why do the organizers don´t repite the 1987 time trial ( or at least the 1958 one)?..it was a tremenduous spectacle, and it didn´t decide the winners of those editions. Gaul had to survive with epyc, and Bernard was humilated the following day.
By the way we don´t lose the hope to see this climb again like a cycling icon with a great winner.

A little of History about the Giant of Provence:

It has been climbed several times ( information from cyclingcols )

2009Juan Manuel Garate (SPA), 2002Richard Virenque (FRA), 2000Marco Pantani (ITA) 1994Eros Poli (ITA), 1987Jean-François Bernard (FRA),1974Gonzalo Aja (SPA),1972Bernard Thévenet (FRA),1970Eddy Merckx (BEL),1967Julio Jiménez (SPA),1965Raymond Poulidor (FRA), 1958Charly Gaul (LUX),1955Louison Bobet (FRA),1952Jean Robic (FRA), 1951Lucien Lazarides (FRA).

But it was a summit finish just in 1958,65,70,72,87,2000,2002 and 2009

And in 1958 and 1987 it was ridden in time trials.....21.5 km in 1958 with a great climb of Charly Gaul, and in 1987 with a superb performance of Jean Francoise Bernard.

I hope we will see such a great stage next year as we could see in other editions.

A thing that has been tested is that a time trial to the Ventoux is an easy success, the ITT in 1958 was great and the one of the 1987 Tour was a superb exhibition by J.F.Bernard

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Photo: © AFP
That day was a very special day for the Tour, there was a French leader, Charly Mottet, there was a favourite to win the stage, the Colombian Luis Herrera ( and Pedro Delgado also counted.but less), a favourite to win the Tour, Stephen Roche,..................and then the ssuccesor of Bernard Hinault broke the watch.

The references of Bernard were the best since the start, he was getting closer to Roche time check to time check................Mottet was losing the yellow jersey, and the favourites  Herrera and Delgado were doing a good time trial but far from Bernard´s time.

A good time as a reference was the time of Fabio Parra with 1h21'48", who beat the best time of Martial Gayant in 48", then Herrera arrived with 1h21'23". Colombian journalists were excited, their riders were conquering the Tour. They had Parra and Herrera, but Wilches and Acevedo were in the first positions of the stage.

Pedro Delgado was 250 meters to the finish line and he was in time to break Herrera´s time. Finally he was 12" slower. Only three riders hadn´t arrived...Roche, Bernard and Mottet.

Roche saved a difficult day in the race 1h22'03"....he had only lost 28" to Delgado and 40" to Herrera, a very good day............till the moment Bernard appeared............he was arriving with Roche nearly in sight, he was going to win the stage, to take the yellow and to become the  favourite number 1 to win the Tour .......time for Bernard 1h19'44"..........1'51" to Delgado a 2'19" to Roche.............Mottet arrived with the 9th best time 3'58" slower than Bernard...........the Tour had changed.

Now Bernard was leading with 2'34" to Roche, 2'47" to Mottet, 3'56" to Delgado ( one of the fvourtes to win the Tour in Merckx´s words) and 8'18" to Herrera who was reducing the gap stage by stage.

Another French leader.............he would lose the yellow the following day in a strategic operation of Guimard´s renault. That day in the route of Villard the Lans Bernard suffered the key moment of his career, he lost the yellow and he didn´t wear it again, his oportunity had gone, he wasn´t close to the podium in the rest of the Tours he started, but that day he signed a historic day............

Photo Sirotti
In 1958, the time trial was only a 21,5 kilometers length stage.
Charly Gaul and Bahamontes had an exciting duel, with the rest of the participants minutes ahead of them.
The morning leader Favero lost 8 minutes, Geminiani the new leader lost 5 minutes, Anquetil more than four.

Gaul and Bahamontes were separated by just 31"..............Gaul was now third in the overall and was still a contender. In  the followng stage he suffered mechanical incidents and lost 11 minutes, the Tour was over for him........but then came the exhibition in the way to Aix le Bains, the angel of the mountains was still in contention with only a minute behind Favero and Geminiani, and there was a time trial left, which Gaul won to be the winner of the 1958 edition with more than 3 minutes to Favero,2nd, and Geminini,3rd.

This climb is also connected to the greatest cyclist ever, the Belgian Eddy Merckx, who won the stage in 1970

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Merckx was the leader with more than 6 minutes to Zoetemelk, but he wanted the stage, perhaps to honour his mate Simpson, who had died there during the last time it had been climbed. Merckx, first with Agostinho, and later alone, climbed the Ventoux with his normal ambition. All was going well for him, iw was an exhibition, but with less than a kilometer to the climb he started suffering, he closed the finish line in a bad state and finally he fainted................it was one the most difficult days in Merckx career.

Two years later, the Ventoux was again in the menu, but that year Mercks had a very tough opponent, the Spanish Ocaña. The press had been waiting for this duel since the crash of the Spaniard in Mente the previous year.

When the stage took place Merckx was the leader and Ocaña was finding nearly impossible to drop the Belgian, Ventoux was a good chance. Molteni controlled the climb but Ocaña repetitive attacks dropped everybody but Poulidor and Merckx

Photo Offside

Ocaña surrendered and they slowed the pace, Thevenet took advantage of the situation and closed the gap. Later he attacked and won the stage with 34" to Merckx , Ocaña was dropped and lose a few seconds.
Now the overall was lead by Merckx with more than 3 minutes to an ocaña that was not being the supposed rival to Merckx.

In the Alpes Ocaña abandonned and Merckx won the Tour easiliy, another rival, the French Guimard had to quit too, due to a knee injury..the green jersey was for Merckx too, and 8 stages, the doubts that the 1971 edition had produced in people and press had totally dissapeared.

But this is a tragic climb too. The British champion Tom Simpson died on its slopes in 1967. It was a very hot day and Simpson had taken amphetamines and alcohol ( this was a bad-luck casuality in one of the places they took drinks during the sage).
That year Tom Simpson was mate of the future winner of that Tour, Roger Pingeon, and of the raising star and winner of San  Remo 66 and 67 ( and 2 stages in the last Giro),Eddy Merckx.

Photo http://www.sportvintage.it

Simpson forced a lot and fall, but he continued........he should have quit, but the 1965 world champion didn´t surrender and that was his end.............

Photo http://www.sportvintage.it/
It was a drama, frontpages of papers spoke about doping, cycling was under suspiction, and Mont Ventoux had been the witness of a tragedy......the Spanish climber Julio Jiménez was the first on the climb but nobody noticed, even though he was assisted, Tom Simpson couldn´t live............

lunes, 29 de octubre de 2012

Millar y Delgado. Parte II. Guzet Neige 84

9 de Julio 1984, la única etapa en los Pirineos, es la hora de los escaladores, Millar y Delgado están preparados para afrontar su segundo duelo..........en los Pirineos.

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Una dura etapa, y larga. Pero primero presentaremos éste Tour 84 y la situación antes de llegar a esta etapa.

La edición de 1984 del Tour era muy esperada debido a la vuelta de Hinault y a la lucha que se esperaba que mantuviera éste con el ganador de la edición de 1983 y segundo ( con polémica incluida) del Giro 1984, Laurent Fignon. Antiguos compañeros, rivales encarnizados ahora.

Photo: © AFP

Fignon que acababa de ganar el Campeonato francés opositaba a favorito con el Tejón, sin embargo, había muchos outsiders, como los colombianos que traían a su gran estrella Lucho Herrera, Roche, Anderson ,Kelly, escaladores como Millar o los españoles Arroyo y Delgado..sin olvidar al campeón del mundo, el joven americano Greg Lemond., que estaba encuadrado en el equipo de Fignon y que podía ser un muy serio rival que Guimard podía utilizar en tácticas y movimientos estratégicos.
El recorrido era bastante duro y completo con una semana final en los Alpes terrorífica. Se afrontarían de forma consecutiva etapas en  Alpe D´Huez, la Plagne, Morzine and Crans Montana con una cronoescalaada previa a la Ruchere.

El Tour empezó con la esperada victoria de Hinault en el prólogo, convirtiéndose en el primer maillot amarillo. La sombra de una tiranía planeaba sobre el Tour, ¿ volvería Hinault a tiranizar el Tour?........................la duda duró sólo 3 etapas, lo justo para que el Renault ganara la contrarreloj por equipos, sacando a una discreta Vie Claire 55".

Pero el momento clave del Tour llegó en la quinta etapa, una fuga consentid de Vincent Barteau ( Renault), Maurice le Guilloux ( La Vie Claire) and Paulo Ferreira ( Sporting Raposeira) consiguió poner en jaque el Tour. La presencia de Renault y Vie Claire bloqueó una posible persecución

Photo anglade

Finalmene Ferreira ganaba la etapa y el pelotón llegaba a casi 18 minutos. Barteau era el nuevo líder y los favoritos estaban a más de 18 minutos en la general con le Guillox segundo a 1'33" y Ferreira 3º a 3'13.......podrían manener la ventaja?.

Quizás los favoritos habían ido demasiado lejos

La clasificación general estaba

1. Vincent Barteau en 18h47'53"
2. Le Guilloux à 1'33"
3. P.Ferreira à 3'13"
4. Van der Poel à 17'45"
5. Anderson à 17'53"
6. Hanegraaf à 17'54"
7. M.Madiot à 17'58"
8. L.Peeters à 18'03"
9. LeMond à 18'04"
10. Fignon à 18'07"
11. Vanderaerden à 18'17"
12. Zoetemelk à 18'24"
13. Jules à 18'27"
14. Van den Haute à 18'28"
15. Veldscholten à 18'31"

......e Hinault estaba a casi 19 minutes.

Sorprendentemente Fignon ganaba la primera contrarreloj larga en Le Mans con 49" sobre un Hinault que era 3º tras el parisino y Kelly ...............Barteau seguía de líder con más de 12 minutos sobre Fignon.

Ferreira y sobretodo Guilloux todavía estaban en la pomada pero no con verdaderas posibilidades. Yel primer test montañoso llegaba, con un duelo entre escaladores que aguardaba..........

11ª etapa de Pau a Guzet Neige, de 226 km , en un día caluroso. Era la única etapa de los Pirineos..........dura pero sólo una, lo duro llegaría en los Alpes, pero antes........

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Subidas............Portet de Aspet, 2nd categoría
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Col de la Core.........1ª categoría
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Col de Latrape-Guzet Neige
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Una etapa difícil, con muchos intentos desde el principio, aunque la primera fuga importante era la de de Rooy y Arnaud con de Rooy primero en la subida a Ares ( 3ª categoría).

Cuando se afrontaba el Aspet de Rooy se iba sólo con el pelotón a 1 minuto y favoritos como Lemond y sobretodo Roche pasando un auténtico calvario.

En la cima de Rooy sacaba 33" a los importantes...................llegaba entonces el momento importante. Se producía una fuga de 8 corredores con Millar entre ellos.

Cazaban a De Rooy en el col de la Core y habrían un hueco de más de 3 minutos con el pelotón. En la pancarta de puerto sólo 4 de los escapados quedaban alante, Veldscholten, Bernaudeau ( nuevo maillot de la montaña), Millar y Didier, con casi 3 minutos sobre los favoritos........y un poco más atrás Lemond y un Barteau que se defendía con todo.

En Latrape Didier se quedaba y Lemod seguía sufriendo.Bernaudeau,Millar y Veldscholten forzaban el ritmo con más de 3 minutos sobre un grupo de favoritos con continuos parones en el ritmo.

Simon, Kelly, Fignon e Hinault no se movían ............Lemond sufría y Roche se había quedado hacía bastante.

Delgado atacaba detrás en la última parte de Latrape y se acercaba a menos de 2 minutos de cabeza...............las referencias llegaban a Millar que aceleraba y con un ataque seco se marchaba en solitario......otro duelo en los Pirineos se avecinaba...¿ podría Delgado cazar a Millar esta vez?..........el español se iba acercando poco a poco, y para completar el espectáculo Lucho Herrera atacaba del pelotón, al igual que hacía  Arroyo y Fignon algo más tarde tras ver flaquear a Hinault......Millar sufría, Herrera cazaba a  Delgado y se marchaba.......pero sólo quedaba algo mas de un kilómetro.......Millar iba a ganar

Herrera volaba y  Delgado no podía mantener su ritmo....................la ventaja de Millar era inferior al minuto pero veía la línea de meta cerca, se ponía la gorra.......iba a ganar su segunda etapa en los Pirineos en dos años consecutivos,  Delgado iba a ser 3º .......la victoria parecía que se le resistía al bravo escalador español.....

Millar gana.........se  desgañitaba Phil Liggett con gran felicidad.

Hinault sufría y Fignon y Arroyo aumentaban la diferencia.............Barteau resistía........un enfermo Lemond salvaba el día........la clasificación de la etapa quedaba.....

1.Robert Millar......7h 3min 42 sec
2.Luis Herrera...........at 41"
3.Pedro Delgado.......at 1'01"
4.Bernaudeau............at 1'47"
5.Gerard Veldscholten 2'05"
6. Ángel Arroyo...........2'13"
7.Laurent Fignon..........same t.
8.Le Bigau................at 2'49"
9.Alfonso Flores.......at 3'
10.Ruttimann............at 3'05"

...Hinault algo detrás

En los Alpes el duelo continuaría entre nuestros dos protagonistas Millar y Delgado , una gran lucha por el maillot de puntos rojos de la montaña.

Photo pezcyclingnews

..........pero Delgado caía rompiéndose la clavícula en el descenso de Joux Plane camino de Morzine y Millar aseguraba la 4ªposición de la general y el maillot de la montaña , un gran Tour para el escocés, que acababa justo detrás de Fignon, Hinault y Lemond en la general. Barteau no aguantaba y se hundía en los Alpes acabando el Tour 28º a 1h y  2" de Fignon.

La clasificación final era increíble, de gran nivel:

1. Laurent Fignon...................112h03'40"
2.Bernard Hinault.......................10'32"
3.Greg Lemond..........................11'46"
4.Robert Millar...........................14'42"
5.Sean Kelly...............................16'35"
6.ángel Arroyo............................19'22"
7.Pascal Simon...........................21'17"
8.Pedro Muñoz..........................26'17"
9.Claude Criquelion....................29'12"
10.Phil Anderson........................29'16"

Fignon era el nuevo jefe del pelotón, pero Hinault no se rendiría, Lemond esperaba su momento, y los Colombianos y especialmente Millar y Delgado continuarían su particular lucha en las montañas.

Nos vemos en los siguientes capítulos de éste emocionante duelo.

Millar and Delgado. Part II. Guzet Neige 84.

9th July 1984, the only stage in the Pyrenees, it is climber´s time, Millar and Delgado are ready

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A very tough stage. But first we will introduce you about this Tour, and the situation before this stage.

The 1984 was a very expected Tour by cycling supporters, and that was due to the great French duel, the former winner of the Tour, Laurent Fignon, and the great champion Bernard Hinault, old mates, now fierce rivals

Photo: © AFP
People were expecting a strong comeback from Hinault, but Fignon was in a good shape ( 2nd in the overall of a polemic Giro and winner of the French championship)...........and there were many outsiders, such as the Colombians, with the star Luis Herrera, and climbers like Millar and Delgado.........and the young world champion, the American Greg Lemond who was in Fignon´s team and was supposed to be an outsider.

The route was very complete and the final week in the Alps was terrible. Cyclists had successive stages to Alpe D´Huez, la Plagne, Morzine and Crans Montana with a previous individual time trial ascent to la Ruchere........incredibly tough.

The Tour started as it was expected by so many people, Hinault won the prologue and turned into the first yellow jersey.

The shadow of a dominance of Hinault flew over the Tour.........but it only lasted three stages when Renault team won the team time trial, with la Vie Claire losing 55".

But the real key moment of the Tour took place in the 5th stage. A breakaway with Vincent Barteau ( Renault), Maurice le Guilloux ( La Vie Claire) and Paulo Ferreira ( Sporting Raposeira) was not chased by the bunch................perhaps because the two most important teams were represented.

Photo anglade

Finally Ferreira took the stage and the peloton arrived at the finish line nearly 18 minutes behind.............Barteau was the new leader...........and the favourites were more than 18 minutes ahead of him, with le Guilloux 2nd at 1'33" and Ferreira 3rd at 3'13.......could they keep the advantage?.

Perhaps the favourites had gone too far..........

The overall classification was
1. Vincent Barteau en 18h47'53"
2. Le Guilloux à 1'33"
3. P.Ferreira à 3'13"
4. Van der Poel à 17'45"
5. Anderson à 17'53"
6. Hanegraaf à 17'54"
7. M.Madiot à 17'58"
8. L.Peeters à 18'03"
9. LeMond à 18'04"
10. Fignon à 18'07"
11. Vanderaerden à 18'17"
12. Zoetemelk à 18'24"
13. Jules à 18'27"
14. Van den Haute à 18'28"
15. Veldscholten à 18'31" 

......and Hinault was losing nearly 19 minutes.

The important stages were still to come but not in a normal way. Fignon won the 67 km individual time trial in Lemans. Fignon won by 49" to Hinaut who was third in the stage and the initial appeareance of a favouritsm of the Badger was now Fignon´s...............but Barteau was still the leader with more than 12 minutes to Fignon.

Ferreira and especially Guilloux were still in contention but the first mountain stage was getting closer. Another beautiful duel between climbers was waiting..........

It was the moment for the 11th stage from Pau to Guzet Neige, a 226 km stage, in a hot day. It was the moment of the only stage of the Pyrenees..........

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Climbs............Portet de Aspet, 2nd category
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Col de la Core.........1st category
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Col de Latrape-Guzet Neige
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A difficult stage, with several attempts, but the first important breakaway was the one with de Rooy and Arnoud, with de Rooy leading the pace to the climb de Ares ( 3rd category).

When they faced Aspet, De Rooy was alone, and passed the steepest slopes of the climb alone. The bunch was 1 minute behind with some favourites suffering. Roche and Lemond had been dropped.

In the summit de Rooy is 33" ahead of a little group of important riders.....................and then the important moment appear..............a group of 8 riders leave the peloton.......Millar between them.

They catched de Rooy in the Col de la Core and open a gap of more than three minutes to the main group. At the summit only four riders resisted, Veldscholten, Millar, Didier and Bernaudeau ( the new leader of the climbers classification)....with nearly 3 minutes to the favourites, with Lemond and the yellow jersey Barteau a little behind.

In the col de Latrape Didier is dropped and Lemond is still suffering behind...........Bernaudeau, Millar and Veldscholten keep on going with the favourites more than 3 minutes ahead.

Simon, Kelly, Fignon and Hinault don´t move ............Lemond still suffers and Roche is out of contention.

Delgado attacks behind in the last part of Latrape and close the  gap to 2 minutes........Millar knows the danger and when he sees the references decreasing he attacks too.......another great duel...........the Spaniard is closing the gap quickly and to complete the show of the climbers the Colombian star attacks, Lucho Herrera leaves the peloton, so do Fignon and Arroyo a little after......Millar suffers, Herrera catches Delgado, but there is only one kilometer left.......Millar can win

Herrera passes Delgado and the Spaniard can´t stand his pace.....................Millar´s advantage is less than a minute but he see the finish line and put his cap, two years in a row for the Scottish in the Pyrenees. Delgado in going to be third ..the win seems to be forbidden for him but he is a great climber..........

Millar wins.........Phil Liggett´voice breaks of happiness

Hinault suffers and Fignon and Arroyo are increasing the difference.............Barteau ressists........a sick Lemond is saving the day.........the final classification of the stage is.....

1.Robert Millar......7h 3min 42 sec
2.Luis Herrera...........at 41"
3.Pedro Delgado.......at 1'01"
4.Bernaudeau............at 1'47"
5.Gerard Veldscholten 2'05"
6. Ángel Arroyo...........2'13"
7.Laurent Fignon..........same t.
8.Le Bigau................at 2'49"
9.Alfonso Flores.......at 3'
10.Ruttimann............at 3'05"

...Hinault a little behind

In the Alps the duel between Millar and Delgado continues, a good fight for the climber´s jersey

Photo pezcyclingnews

but Delgado crashes in the descent of the Joux Plane close to Morzine and Millar assures the 4th position and the polka dot jersey,a great Tour for Millar who finishes just behind of Fignon, Hinault and Lemond. Barteau couldn´t cope with the leader´s jersey finishing 28th overall 1h and 2" ahead of Fignon.

The final classification was incredible, the first positions are ocuppied by excellent riders:

1. Laurent Fignon...................112h03'40"
2.Bernard Hinault.......................10'32"
3.Greg Lemond..........................11'46"
4.Robert Millar...........................14'42"
5.Sean Kelly...............................16'35"
6.ángel Arroyo............................19'22"
7.Pascal Simon...........................21'17"
8.Pedro Muñoz..........................26'17"
9.Claude Criquelion....................29'12"
10.Phil Anderson........................29'16"

Fignon is the new boss of international cycling, but Hinault don´t surrender, Lemond waits his moment and Colombians, and especially Millar and Delgado are going to continue their particular fight in the mountains.

See you in the next duel between the Scottish and the Spanish.

Queen stages of Giro and Tour 2013.

We can say there are three options in the Giro and three options in the Tour.

Giro options: ( profiles la gazetta dello sport)

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Col de Mont Cenis

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It seems to be a very long and easy distance from Mont Ceins to the start of Telegraphe but it is not easy at all

You can see the  central part of the descent, it is not easy, it is perfect to consolidate Breakaways

2. Val Martello


3.Tre Cime di Lavaredo

I like the stage of Lavaredo, but I don´t know if the best thing in putting it as the las t mountain stage. In relation to the other two stages, they are too short, and they have some problems. In the case of Galibier´s stage the stage should finish in descent, and in the othr stage thre is a los flat terrrain from Prato to the start of Val Martello.
We shouldn´t fail to mention that Gavia, Stelvio and Galibier are very high mountains, and the organizers should have prepared another options in case the snow spoil those climbs ( remember that they will be climbed in May)

My favourite one is Lavaredo, and the other two stages are difficult to predict, especially Val Martello ( t can be a stuff or a legendary stage)

Tour options:( profiles http://www.letour.fr/es/ )


1. Bagneres de Bigorre

Mountain passes & hills

  • Km 28,5 - Col de Portet-d’Aspet5,4 kilometre-long climb at 7%
  • Km 44 - Col de Menté7 km kilometre-long climb at 8,1%
  • Km 87 - Col de Peyresourde13,1 kilometre-long climb at 7,1%
  • Km 107,5 - Col de Val Louron-Azet7,4 kilometre-long climb at 8,3%
  • Km 135 - La Hourquette d’Ancizan9,9 kilometre-long climb at 7,5%

2.Alpe D´Huez

Mountain passes & hills

  • Km 13 - Col de Manse6,6 kilometre-long climb at 6,2 %
  • Km 90,5 - Col d’Ornon5,1 kilometre-long climb at 6,7 %
  • Km 118 - Alpe-d’Huez1 climb of 12,3 kilometre-long at 8,4%
  • Km 127,5 - Col de Sarenne3 kilometre-long climb at 7,8 %
  • Km 168 - Alpe-d’Huez1 climb of 13,8 kilometre-long at 8,1%

3.Le Gran Bornand

Mountain passes & hills

  • Km 33,5 - Col du Glandon21,6 kilometre-long climb at 5,1%
  • Km 83,5 - Col de la Madeleine19,2 kilometre-long climb at 7,9%
  • Km 143 - Col de Tamié8,6 kilometre-long climb at 6,2%
  • Km 165 - Col de l’Épine6,1 kilometre-long climb at 7,6%
  • Km 191,5 - Col de la Croix Fry11,3 kilometre-long climb at 7%

In the case of the Tour I think the queen stage is the one of  Le Gran Bornand, because of its length and the climbs , but it is not really good, I would have preferred a Bourg D´Oisans - Albertville with Galibier-Croix de Fer-Madeleine or different climbs in the last part of the stage.In spite of that I think the mistake is not the stage but the following one finishing in Semnoz.

domingo, 28 de octubre de 2012

Millar y Delgado. Parte I. Bagneres de Luchon 83.

Pedro Delgado y Robert Millar fueron dos de los mejores escaladores durante los 80s. Tuvieron diversas coincidencias y luchas deportivas. Tal vez la más famosa sea la Vuelta a España 1985 , pero cuando se comparan sus carreras deportivas se encuentra punto en común, los Pirineos.Terreno en el que ambos siempre encontraron un hábitat en el que expresarse, fundamentalmente el escocés.

Es por eso que vamos a desarrollar algunas interesantes etapas, comenzando con Pau- Bagneres de Luchon 1983.
Dos jóvenes y prometedores ciclistas en su primer Tour de Francia.

 El Tour de 1983 fué un Tour extraño, sin un claro dominador como había sido Hinault ( que no participaba por problemas en la rodilla) o anteriormente Merckx. Sin embargo fué un Tour con muchos corredores jóvenes y prometedores y otros más veteranos como Kelly o los incombustibles Van Impe o Zoetemelk preparados para dar guerra. Se echaba de menos al la gran promesa, el americano Lemond, 2º en el último mundial y ganador de la última Dauphiné ( Simon que iba líder dió positivo en un test y fué penalizado con 10 minutos y un mes de suspensión que "cumplió" tras el Tour)

Lemond, Anderson Dauphine 83. wwwgreglemondfan.com
Era un Tour atractivo con muchas contrarrelojes, pavé y pocas pero muy duras etapas de montaña. Una en los Pirineos y dos en los Alpes.
La carrera fué muy emocionante con corredores jóvenes como Fignon, Roche,Millar y Anderson entre otros plantando cara a la vieja guardia.

Y con unos invitados especiales, los escarabajos colombianos.
De entre los equipos, destacaba un equipo ye-ye, la Peugeot que contaban con grandes promesas ( Roche, Millar) y con una figura joven pero asentada, Phil Anderson , mas Pascal Simon.

Tras muchos eventos diferentes producidos durante la primera parte del Tour, se llegaba a los Pirineos con el irlandés Kelly de líder, un líder que era favorito pero que en la montaña era una incógnita.

Clasificación general

1. Sean Kelly en 42h06'38"
2. K.Andersen à 1"
3. Anderson à 39"
4. Zoetemelk à 1'24"
5. J.L.Vandenbroucke à 2'10"
6. Roche à 2'14"
7. Kuiper à 2'27"
8. P.Simon à 2'45"
9. Moreau à 2'46"
10. Willems à 2'47"
11. Agostinho à 2'59"
12. Van der Velde à 3'27"
13. Fignon à 3'57"
14. Poisson m.t
15. Emonds à 4'35"

Aún así parecía que Zoetemelk podía ser el máximo aspirante y Anderson también estaba bien situado.
Españoles y colombianos esperaban su oportunidad en las montañas, y aquí llegaba esta:

El primer enfrentamiento entre un escocés y un español iba a empezar, el primer duelo directo de Millar y Delgado era inminente.

Ese 11 de julio de 1983, ambos iban a ser conocidos por el público francés:

10 etapa. Pau - Bagneres de Luchon

La única etapa de los Pirineos, pero una etapa durísima , en un día  tremendamente caluroso.

Aquí tenemos las subidas, dos subidas de 1ª categoría y dos subidas Hors Category.:

Col de Aubisque, 17,3 km at 6,9%. Hors category.
Profile www.altimetrías.com
 Col de Tourmalet, 18,8km at 7,47%. Hors category.
Profile www.altimetrías.com
Col de Aspin

Last 12 km profle www.cyclingcols.com
Col de Peyresurde

 Y la etapa estallaba desde el inicio, con los colombianos moviendo la carrera a pesar de que su lider Flores estaba pasando un  mal día, quizás acusando las altas velocidades de las etapas llanas.
Se pasaba el Aubisque con van Impe primero y el líder Kelly retrasado.
En el descenso Michaud se escapó y posteriormente Millar y Jiménez hacían lo propio. Algunos corredores contratacaron ( Fignon y Delgado entre ellos) y el pelotón aprovechaba el terreno entre puertos para bajar el ritmo, permitiendo al líder Kelly que enlazara.

Una vez el Tourmalet empezó, Jiménez y Millar apretaron el ritmo y superarona  Michaud que era cazado por Fignon y Delgado que iban a algo más de 2 minutos de los líderes.

Al pasar por la cima del Tourmalet, las diferencias habían crecido, Delgado iba a 3'56" mientras Fignon y Michaud pasaban algo más retrasados.Por detrá kelly volvía aceder y Anderson sufría.
En el descenso se unían Fignon, Delgado y Michaud que pasban por las primeras rampas del Aspin a algo menos de 3 minutos, el grupo de los favoritos perdía unos 6 minutos.

Fignon y Delgado apretaban y Michaud se quedaba

Photo Loco de los Pirineos , resubida omarperiko
Por detrás Corredor se acercaba y surgía un ataque importante, el de Pascal Simon, que viendo que Anderson hacía aguas decidía probar fortuna.

Patrocinio Jiménez volvía a ser primero en la cima del puerto, con Millar segundo, Delgado y Fignon a 1'50" y Michaud , Bernaudeau y Simon acercándose. En el valle entre puerto Fignon y Dlgado se relajan y se forma un sexteto con el pelotón a mas de 7 minutos.

Simon se pone en cabeza desde las primeras rampas del Peyresourde y empieza a descolgar compañeros. El primero es Fignon, Michaud y Bernaudeau cede poco despues y finalmente Corredor también cede. Sólo aguanta Delgado.

Millar y Jiménez lideran por menos de dos minutos.

Photo www.cyclingart.blogspot

Delgado aprovechaba para descansar a rueda y  atacaba. Reducía diferencias con los primeros y Millar era avisado. Cuando se avistaba la pancarta de puerto Millar dejaba tirado a Jiménez y pasaba por la cumbre del Peyresourde en primera posición. Jiménez fundido cedía 20" y Delgado que acortaba las distancias rápidamente a 35". Simon 4º mas de minuto y medio y Fignon desfallecido más atras. El liderato era cosa de Simons.

En la bajada Delgado cazaba a Jiménez y se lanzaba a tumba abierta a por Millar, la ventaja era ahora de 27", y seguí abajando. Los comentaristas franceses alucianban con el español, " el loco de los Pirineos" podía ganr la etapa....qué descenso...

15", Millar iba rápido pero Delgado recortaba............12"........último kilómetro, 9"...........Millar iba a ganar, pero por un estrecho margen un día raro para Peugeot, Millar iba a ganar la etapa, Simon sería el nuevo líder, pero Roche y Anderson ya no tendrían ninguna opción tras la etapa..

Millar y Delgado habían tenido una bonita lucha pero la victoria iba a parar a Millar......por un estrecho margen........sólo 6 segundos. Parecía ridículo dicho margen tras una etapa con esta dureza, con tanta calor y con más de 6 horas sobre la bicicleta.

Simon llegaba tercero a 1'13" de su compañero..........
Photo www.sportvox.fr

...........Fignon era 7º a 4'23".

1. Robert Millar  6h23'27"
2. Delgado à 6"
3. P.Simon à 1'13"
4. P.Jimenez à 1'30"
5. E.Corredor à 3'40"
6. Bernaudeau à 4'06"
7. Fignon à 4'23"
8. Michaud à 5'45"
11. Van Impe
13. Arroyo à 7'42"
15.Zoetemelk à 8'55
16. Winnen
18. Kelly à 10'11"
25. Anderson à 12'41"
27. Roche à 13'41"
 A terrible stage for favourites.

La general era liderada por Simon con Fignon segundo a 4'22" de  Simon

Simon abandonaría algunas etapas despues ( debido a una fractura de omoplato)en la etapa del  Alpe D´Huez y Fignon cogería el amarillo para no soltarlo hasta París y ganar su primer Tour de Francia, un gran Tour, la edición de 1983.

Photo www.lavozdegalicia.com
Pero ese duelo vivido, en apariencia casual, iba a ser uno de los más importantes durante los 80, gracias a Robert Millar y Pedro Delgado, dos grandes escaladores en una época de oro para el ciclismo.