Yesterday, in the small hours of the morning, we got back from a mini break to France, having watched three stages of this year’s centenary Tour de France. We stayed at the excellent camp site of Le Bois Coudrais, near Combourg and saw Stage ten, with it’s sprint finish at St. Malo, the individual time-trial from Avranches to Mont St. Michel and the ‘signing in’, prior to the stage from Fougeres to Tours. As always the atmosphere was electrifying but with the added edge of British interest in Chris Froome, riding in yellow, and seeking to become only the second Brit to win the Tour and Mark Cavendish adding to his already impressive list of existing stage wins to assure him of his place in British cycling history as the most prolific stage winner of all time. There were also plenty of ‘up close and personal’ encounters with many of cycling’s international elite.
The ‘caravan’, announcing the arrival of the riders
A break away of five riders on Stage 10, sixty kilometres before the finish
The chasing peleton, just two minutes behind the leading group
The Top Men at the front of the peleton, including Chris Froome in the ‘Maillot Jaune’, Peter Sagan in the Green Jersey, Mark Cavendish, Cadel Evans, Andy Schleck and Andre Greipel
Smile for the camera
Chris Froome and Richie Porte on a pre-race reconnoitre of the 33km time trial course
Third place on the podium, Thomas De Gendt
Overall winner, by eleven seconds, Germany’s Tony Martin
and in second place and overall race leader, Chris Froome
The ‘signing in’ at Fougeres – King of the Mountains, Pierre Rolland
Master Kittel, with three stage wins already to his name , and that incredible hair!
Former Tour winner and current possible threat to Froome, Alberto Contador
The ‘Manx Missile’, Mark Cavendish
Maillot Jaune, and hopefully 2013 Tour de France winner, Chris Froome
More photos to follow in my Tour de France 2013 Gallery.