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Le Tour de France 2009 – The Day After

And now Le Tour de France 2009 is all over; it's Monday morning and we're in a cafe at Montmartre - lucky us, I'm taking care to savour the moment. Even though the coffees are four euros each.

Le Tour de France 2009 – Stage 21: Montereau-Fault-Yonne > Paris...

Bonjour! The start starts today in Montereau-Fault-Yonne, but we're not there. Usually I start the VeloVeritas diary for Le Tour de France 2009 in the morning but then have to switch to 'other work' mode for most of the day - going back to poor old VV late in the day, as Martin and I fight off le vieux homme Morpheus.

Le Tour de France 2009 – Stage 20: Montélimar > Mont...

Today was the famous Mont Ventoux stage... It's 9:00 pm and we're headed for the A7 "Autoroute du Soleil," and the drive north to Paris.

Le Tour de France 2009 – Stage 19: Bourgoin-Jallieu > Aubenas,...

We left Bourgoin-Jallieu this morning, but first a quick run through some of the teams' performances; Cervélo: their Tour has been a good one, Haussler and Hushovd have won stages and Thor has made himself a whole load of new fans by the way he has ridden in pursuit of green.

Le Tour de France 2009 – Stage 18: Annecy, 40.5km ITT

There's a little breeze fluttering the trees in Annecy, it's mild at 25 degrees but rain is forecast - chrono day. The thing about a Tour time trial is that the conditions I have just described might prevail for first starter, at 11:10, F des J's Belorussian champion and lanterne rouge (now that Kenny has gone home) Yauheni Hutarovich.

Le Tour de France 2009 – Stage 17: Bourg-Saint-Maurice > Le...

It had to be an early start, today for Le Grand-Bornand. To get down to the Bourg-Saint-Maurice start, we had to drive against a section of race route and decided to get away early to beat the closures.

Le Tour de France 2009 – Stage 16: Martigny > Bourg-Saint-Maurice,...

Sitting here in Bourg-Saint-Maurice, perhaps I'm going to revise my opinion that l'Equipe's Tour coverage isn't as good as the Gazzetta's Giro coverage. The Gazzetta looks better, but the L'Equipe goes so deep.

Le Tour de France 2009 – Second Rest Day

"Armstrong redescend sur terre," says the headline in L'Equipe - 'Armstrong brought back to earth at the Le Tour de France 2009.' Bert dominates the front page, smiling with his "smoking gun" finger held high - VeloVeritas says; "Chapeau, Bert!"

Le Tour de France 2009 – Stage 15: Pontarlier > Verbier,...

We finished in Verbier today, but first, a little diversion; I've always admired Bradley Wiggins as a pursuiter, but as a roadman, he's never cut the mustard; the cycling saddo's bible, 'Velo' doesn't lie.

Le Tour de France 2009 – Stage 14: Colmar > Besançon,...

"Bonjour," really that should be the German equivalent there of, but my German is even more limited than my French. We spent the night in Freiburg here at Le Tour de France - just across the German border, the hotel room is huge, if a tad Spartan; but that didn't stop us from sleeping like bricks, before starting our day to Besançon.

Le Tour de France 2009 – Stage 13: Vittel > Colmar,...

Bonjour from Colmar! A couple of unrelated items first: I just noticed that the Rolex ad on the back of yesterday's L'Equipe is a picture of Turnberry, with Ailsa Craig in the background - ah! the Auld Country!

Le Tour de France 2009 – Stage 12: Tonnerre > Vittel,...

Tour de France! Ca va? What does the '0' stand for in 02:30 ? "Oh my God, it's early!" Four hours sleep, as Barry White would say; "it's just not enough!" It's 14:19 and we're on the motorway, near Metz; we just got lost - no excuses, but the signage is grim. Destination Vittel.

Le Tour de France 2009 – Stage 11: Vatan > Saint-Fargeau,...

'Cav sez; "Gotcha!" to Baz', as the Sun might say if it were to cover Le Tour de France, and today's stage into Saint-Fargeau. It took Barry Hoban a whole career - two decades - to notch up eight Tour stage wins - but they didn't all come from bunch gallops.

Le Tour de France 2009 – Stage 10: Limoges > Issoudun,...

I didn’t think that Cav could win the Primavera now, after today's display in Limoges, I think that he can do pretty much anything he puts his mind to within the scope of his physical characteristics. He can win the green jersey on the Champs Elysees in Le Tour de France, Paris - Tours and the Worlds too-when the parcours suits him.

Le Tour de France 2009 – First Rest Day

'Armstrong admits "there is tension at Astana's table" - says The Guardian headline today; I'd never have believed that!

Le Tour de France 2009 – Stage 9: Saint-Gaudens > Tarbes,...

As Jean Rene Bernadeau kissed Pierrick Fedrigo after the sharp featured former French champion took the second Bbox stage of the 2009 Tour, from Saint-Gaudens to Tarbes. I think what he said was; “well done son, we’ve all got a job, next year!”

Le Tour de France 2009 – Stage 8: Andorre-la-Vieille > Saint-Girons,...

Clever and strong, Luis Leon Sánchez won this afternoon in Stage 8 from Andorre-la-Vieille into Saint-Girons, adding this to his win at Paris-Nice earlier this year.

Le Tour de France 2009 – Stage 7: Barcelona > Andorre...

Neo-pro Brice Feillu (Agritubel) proved the strongest rider today from a group of nine riders who reached the Andorre Arcalis climb together after being at the head of the race for nearly 200km.

Le Tour de France 2009 – Stage 6: Gérone > Barcelona,...

Less than one week into its debut Tour, the Cervélo Team scored a sprint victory today with Thor Hushovd in the 181.5km sixth stage to Barcelona. Hushovd battled through rain and slick roads that saw team captain Carlos Sastre fall without major consequences.

Le Tour de France 2009 – Stage 5: Le Cap d’Agde...

Today's fifth stage from Le Cap d'Agde saw the first successful breakaway of this year's Tour. Thomas Voeckler held off the chasing peloton by seven seconds to win out of a five-man escape in the flat but windy 196.5km course from Cap d'Agde to Perpignan. Russian rider Mikhail Ignatiev also held on from the break to claim second with British sprint phenom Mark Cavendish leading the pack snapping at their heels for third.

Le Tour de France 2009, Stage 4: Montpellier > Montpellier, 39km...

The team time trial here in Montpellier, it’s beautiful; speed, strength, skill, trust, unity, honour — everything that makes pro bike racing special.

Postcard from Arles; If I Were A Guy I’d Ride The...

This is no feminist rant about the Tour de France for Women, nothing like that, it's about love, actually. I stood on a hot street today, a long but tight curve, in Arles, for Stage Three.

Le Tour de France 2009 – Stage 3: Marseille > La...

Mark Cavendish soared to his second straight win in the Tour de France today to La Grande-Motte, winning the sprint from a small bunch and strengthening his overall hold on the green jersey.

Le Tour de France 2009 – Stage 2: Monaco > Brignoles,...

Mark Cavendish blasted to his first victory of the Tour today at Brignoles, a victory that also places him in the green jersey as the leader of the race's points classification, for the first time in his career.

Le Tour de France 2009 – Stage 1: Monaco, 15.5km ITT

Lance going off early in the Monaco TT surprised me, but there will be a reason-nothing happens by chance with the man from Plano. The cadence was high and he had the Jenson Button lines on the corners, but somehow he wasn't 'on it.'

Le Tour de France 2009 – One Day To Go…

Day two in Monaco, and the excitement is starting to grow, even if some of the residents are trying too hard not to let on that they're thrilled to have the Tour de France 2009 kicking off here.

Le Tour de France 2009 – We’re There!

In previous years we've posted stories and interviews live from the Tour de France, but we usually haven't joined the race until it's into the second week.

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