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Le Tour de France 2017 – Stage 15: Laissac-Sévérac l’Église – Le Puy-en-Velay, 189.5km. Mollema in the mountains(Comments Off on Le Tour de France 2017 – Stage 15: Laissac-Sévérac l’Église – Le Puy-en-Velay, 189.5km. Mollema in the mountains)

July 16, 2017 • by Ed Hood and Martin Williamson

Sunday, Stage 15 and VeloVeritas’s last shift on Tour – so we headed for the biggest hill we could find to remind ourselves how special and beautiful France and this race really are.

Today we’re in the heartland, perhaps not deepest agricultural ‘France Profonde;’ the rural, simple, beautiful heart of the nation, not with the gorges and cols – but it’s quiet, lovely and some of the simple, striking images surprise as you drive the parcours.

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Le Tour de France 2017 – Stage 14: Blagnac – Rodez, 181.5km. Michael Matthews makes it two in a row for Sunweb(Comments Off)


July 15, 2017 • by Ed Hood and Martin Williamson

Yes, there are days when we’ve criticised the racing – those endless ‘sprinter stages’ where only the last five minutes saves the day. But we were puzzled by the comments we saw about yesterday’s stage to Rodez on social media; the “Bore de France” and the break “allowed for purely commercial reasons”?

Yes, it was a ‘breakaway stage’ but after two days such as we’ve had with Bardet then Barguil’s wins on tough stages in the Pyrenees it would be difficult to expect another big GC battle.

Le Tour de France 2017 – Stage 13: Saint-Girons – Foix, 101km. Barguil on Bastille Day!(Comments Off)


July 14, 2017 • by Ed Hood and Martin Williamson

VeloVeritas soothsayer, Viktor and I have long been critics of Warren Barguil (Sunweb & France) as a ‘one hit wonder,’ with his two stage wins in the Vuelta in 2013 then very little else; but in this Tour he’s certainly been reborn.

He was so close to Rigoberto Uran (Cannondale & Colombia) last Sunday after being the hero of the day and today, on Bastille Day he scored the biggest and most beautiful win of his career with a historic stage victory. 

Le Tour de France 2017 – Stage 12: Pau – Peyragudes, 214.5km. Bardet confirms and Aru goes Yellow!(Comments Off)


July 13, 2017 • by Ed Hood and Martin Williamson

It wasn’t until inside the last kilometre at Peyragudes that the drama really unfolded; Bardet confirms, as does Aru, Froome cracks a little, Quintana cracks A LOT and much as it pains me; ‘one season too many, Bert!’

And Bennett and Martin impress, especially the latter who’s carrying injuries from that horrible crash with Porte on Sunday.

We were skeking the race on Spanish TV having watched the race ‘live’ on the Col de Mente, we chose that climb because of it’s history – it’s where Ocana crashed out of the 1971 Tour and because it’s a brute.

Le Tour de France 2017 – Stage 11: Eymet – Pau, 203.5km. Bodnar excites as Kittel takes his tally to five!(Comments Off)


July 12, 2017 • by Ed Hood and Martin Williamson

‘Sprinter stages,’ why are they so dull? Albeit ‘Bison’ Bodnar (Bora hansgrohe & Poland) did a job of enlivening the last wee bittie of yesterday’s procession.

Firstly, the GC teams won’t go in the break, they’re there to look after their team leader; mountain stages are different where they’ll put men up the road so as the team leader can bridge up to them. That rules out Sky (Froome), AG2R (Bardet), Movistar (Quintana), Trek (Contador), Astana (Aru), UAE (Meintjes) and Orica (Yates).

In all of Lance’s seven Tour ‘wins’ his team mates (Hincapie) only ever won the one stage – the focus has to be 100% on the GC man.

Le Tour of France 2017 – Stage 10: Périgueux – Bergerac, 178km. Kittel makes his fourth look easy(Comments Off)


July 11, 2017 • by Ed Hood and Martin Williamson

VeloVeritas’ first Tour stage start of the year; Stage 10, Perigeuex to Bergerac through the lovely Dordogne Valley countryside. But not before all them words were written and pictures edited, placed and posted from the VeloVeritas bedoffice.

Périgueux wasn’t the busiest stage start we’ve ever witnessed but we’re not complaining; we were in among the buses and riders in jig time…

Le Tour de France 2017 – Rest Day 1: Dordogne. Moules, frites, turbos, and interviews(Comments Off)


July 10, 2017 • by Ed Hood and Martin Williamson

The deal is that they have four static bikes on rollers hooked up to a magnetic ‘cycle track’ – Scalextrix style – with little ‘Lego figures’ on tiny bikes on the track. The harder you pedal, the faster your little figure goes.

Scottish honour was upheld by VeloVeritas with Martin posting fastest heat against Berteld Van de Velde, “the Moules Guy” at time of leaving, although the Davide Bramati v. Wilfried Peeters heat looked damn quick to us, albeit they’re unlikely to want to spend a weekend at ‘Penzion Stybar’ in the Czech Republic, the reward for being fastest on the day.

Scrapbook: Het Nieuwsblad and Kuurne-Brussels-Kuurne 2017(Comments Off)


March 4, 2017 • by Ed Hood

Ghent, or rather ‘Gent’ we love it; the bars, the people and the fact you can walk into a filling station and there are six quality cycling magazines on the shelf to chose from, and you have to love a city where they have taps to discharge the rainwater. Omloop Het Nieuwsblad and Kuurne-Brussels-Kuurne, the first real races of the year – Down Under, the Desert races, Langkawi? Come on!

Inside the Berlin Six Day 2017 – the Final Three Nights(Comments Off)


January 26, 2017 • by Ed Hood

The wee small hours of Wednesday morning, heading north out of Berlin, en route Rostock, the ferry across the Baltic and Denmark for the Copenhagen Six Day. I wish I could say that Berlin had an epic finale – but I can’t, it was dire. Processional, flat, uninspired with no tension, no theatre, no drama.

Kris reckons it’s the worst Six Day he’s ever seen – he’s seen many, many more than me and I wouldn’t argue with his judgement. The root of the problem is that in the Madison Group Six Days the riders are on reduced contract fees with the rest of their earnings in prize money. ‘Fair enough’ I hear you say. Trouble is that it’s not – because the riders are all busy trying to hold their place in the standings it breeds very negative racing.

Inside the Berlin Six Day 2017 – the First Three Nights(Comments Off)


January 21, 2017 • by Ed Hood

You’ve got to get here first, right? Even by Ryanair punishment flight standards, it was a sore one. The lady in front of me, I’m sure was taking her kids to audition for; ‘Devil Spawn of Berlin, The Revenge’ – they’ll get the parts, no problem.

I felt like a native buying my S Bahn train ticket from the machine and riding into town with the rush hour commuters – damn cold though. It’s ‘all change’ at the velodrome, the pits have been moved into the centre of the track, divorcing us from the action and meaning we can’t push riders ‘in’ or offer them a hand to save them from kicking back on sore legs when they come in. The programme is different too with the big motors not coming out to play until after the last chase in the Six Day – happy days, so nice to walk out of the hall and leave the noise and exhaust fumes behind.

Le Tour de France 2016 – Stage 21; Chantilly – Paris Champs-Élysées. Greipel Wins, We Reflect(Comments Off)


July 24, 2016 • by Ed Hood

I braved the tourists and human statues up on Edinburgh’s High Street to see if I could get Monday’s L’Equipe in the International Newsagents – it’s the one for all the good Tour stats. But alas, no dice – I had to settle for Sunday’s Observer and Monday’s Guardian where it’s wall to wall Christopher and Sky.

Chris Froome rode well, no doubt, and showed panache when he won that stage off the descent and when he joined up with World Champion Peter Sagan – surely the ‘Man Of The Tour’? – and ‘Bison’ Bodnar to ambush the sprinters, his time trialling was top drawer and no one could out climb him. So we can’t criticise the man – but style, soul, personality, colour are all missing.

I thought I’d go back to my pre-Tour predictions and see how I fared as my final words on The Big Loop.

Le Tour de France 2016 – Stage 20; Megève – Morzine-Avoriaz. Izagirre Descends To Victory(Comments Off)


July 23, 2016 • by Ed Hood

We’d hoped for a big GC dog fight on the Joux Plane but what we got was a dour struggle to the line whilst those crazy baroudeurs battled for the stage win.

It was a nice morning to start with but as we parked up on the Joux Plane the clouds scudded in, thunder roared down the valley and the lightning flashed brighter than a million photog’s flash guns.

Callum and I stared glumly through the windscreen, we HAD to go out in it shortly.

Le Tour de France 2016 – Stage 19; Albertville – Saint-Gervais Mont Blanc. Bardet Saves the Tour for France(Comments Off)


July 22, 2016 • by Ed Hood

We chose the wrong mountain – but little did we know there’d be a big rain storm on the last climb to give the race the jolt it’s been requiring for three weeks. A great day for Bardet and AG2R.

A good day for Quintana, Mentjies and Martin. A bad day for Mollema, Yates, Dumoulin, Rolland and Navarro – the latter three all crash victims.

And Froome and Porte have had better days. . .

Le Tour de France 2016 – Stage 18; Sallanches – Megève ITT. Froome Dispels any Doubt(Comments Off)


July 21, 2016 • by Ed Hood

If anyone harboured any doubts about the fact that Froome was going to win this Tour it took him just 30 minutes to straighten things out. He destroyed everyone in including the man who’s probably the world’s number one ‘chronoman’ – Tom Dumoulin. Whilst the mountains may be beautiful, a time trial up one is a daunting prospect.

But riders like Keisse and Hayman just have to ‘get on with it’ riding stages way outside their comfort zones. We got ourselves set up to follow big Lithuanian Ramunas Navardauskas in the time test and duly lined up behind the Cannondale car. The course was beautiful – but savage with varying gradients, fast bits, some real killer ramps and a descent to close.

Le Tour de France 2016 – Stage 17; Berne – Finhaut-Emosson. Ilnur Zakarin Goes Solo(Comments Off)


July 20, 2016 • by Ed Hood

How are the mighty fallen? We had to double check the number – but ‘yes’ it was Tejay, way off the back and just ‘riding in’ on the Col de la Forclaz – well, we got that one right, we said he do nothing in this race.

But we did also say that Nairo Quintana would win it – but that was more out of hope than anything else but it would be tall, skinny Russian Ilnur Zakarin who would take the day, eventually.


Here at VeloVeritas…

...we reckon cycling matters. We aim to provide our readers with truthful, interesting and unique articles about the sport we love.

We cover all aspects of cycling by actually being there, in the mix: from the local "10" to the famous WorldTour "monuments" - classics like Milan-SanRemo and the Tour of Lombardy, the World Championships, the winter Six Days, and of course the Grand Tours.

We attend many local races as well as work on the professional circuit - and we do it all with a Scottish accent.

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