Monday, September 20, 2021
HomeBlogsEx-Garmin Physio Toby Watson's BlogA Hard "Easy" Day: TdF Stage 10 (breakaway)

A Hard “Easy” Day: TdF Stage 10 (breakaway)

-

A Hard “Easy” Day. Yesterday was always going to be the day that the breakaway succeeded. The profile of the course and the stages on the days either side of it meant that neither the GC nor the sprinter teams would be interested. It wasn’t hard enough to separate the GC lads, but wasn’t easy enough for the sprinters to make it to the finish with the main bunch.

That meant that the first race of the day was to get into the break, and so the first hour of racing was extremely fast as small groups tried to get away and were hauled back by teams who didn’t have someone in the break and so on and so forth.

Unfortunately we had another bad crash in this period with Robbie Hunter hitting the road pretty hard. He has a small radial head fracture (near his elbow, affecting his hand positioning capabilities) but he’ll start the stage today.

We’re hoping he can get through it in survival mode. I hate to sound like a broken record, but these blokes go through so much pain in this race: they’re very tough men.

Hard "Easy" Day
Keeping out the heat inside the bus.

Once the break did go away, the peloton rode without major incident, the main difficulty: again being the heat.

I’m not sure if we’re noticing the heat because the whole season until this race has seen cold and wet conditions reign: one of our boys had more race days in the wet by the START of the Giro (in May) than he had for the whole of the 2009 season.

Although upon reflection, the weather is really hot, and undoubtedly the peloton would be suffering regardless of what had happened in the season to date.

All that we as the support team can do is work out strategies to help beat the heat.

Today’s stage looks like it will be a bunch sprint. Fingers crossed for some good results for our boys in a few hours time!

Toby Watsonhttps://www.veloveritas.co.uk
Ex-Garmin Transitions physiotherapist and soigneur Toby Watson brings you inside the squad, and shows you what it's like to be working with a top team on the biggest races in the world. Through his regular blog updates, Toby shares his sense of drama and fun that were essential parts of his job. Toby is Australian, and currently lives in Girona with his fiancee Amanda. If he has any time, he enjoys reading and running, and occasionally skiing too, when he can.

Related Articles

Le Tour de France 2014 – Stage 10: Mulhouse – La Planche des Belles Filles, 161 km. Nibali Wins, Contador Crashes

La Planche des Belles Filles. Epic. There's no other word. In any Saga there are heroes and villains; but the only one of the latter to manifest herself on this day was Lady Luck. Lashing out spitefully at Alberto Contador and casting a second Grand Favourite from the Tour. I can't recall the last time I saw the Spaniard "chuck" a race so knew it was serious.

Le Tour ’11, Stage 14 – last day in the Pyrénées

Andorra, Pyrénées. Everything about it seems wrong. For a start, it's an independent tax haven/principality sitting at the top of a Pyrenean mountain, an hour's drive over sweeping twisty hairpinned roads from the nearest town. Some pals said to me that when they went to Andorra for skiing, they thought it was OK. Perhaps the snow covered all the cracks, but I'm not sure how the inhabitants' attitudes could be masked; almost - no, everyone - we met was unpleasant, in attitude and manner.

Le Tour de France 2013 – Stage 8: Castres > Ax3 Domaines, 194km. Froome Decimates the Race

Yesterday we alluded to the fact that a ‘break might stick’ and ‘Froome in yellow?’ We got the first one wrong but even we didn’t realise how spectacularly right we’d be on the second one finishing into Ax3 Domaines.

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

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...

Le Tour de France 2016 – Stage 12; Montpellier – Mont Ventoux. De Gendt Wins Amidst the Chaos

First of all, a fantastic win by Thomas De Gendt (Lotto-Soudal), let’s say that first and foremost. The Belgian was away all day then won the sprint from another two survivors of the big break of the day. As a bonus, he takes the polka dot jersey, too. De Gendt He's tamed the Stelvio and (most of) the Ventoux - he just needs to win on the Angleru now...

Le Tour de France 2010, Stage 8: Station des Rousses – Morzine-Avoriaz; Schleck Takes First Blood

Great racing today to Morzine-Avoriaz, and whatever Astana pay Paolo Tiralongo (Italia) and Daniel Navarro (Espana), it's not enough. Tiralongo has been around a long time, third in the Baby Giro in 1998 he turned pro in 2000 and arrived at Astana this year after three years with Fassa, three with Panaria and four with Lampre.

At Random

Behind the Scenes at the Six Day London 2015

Second place finishers and race revelations Chris Latham and Ollie Woods are both products of the British Cycling ‘system’. There were a number of factors which contributed to their result – they’re familiar with the venue and the track is big, fast and non technical unlike Gent and Bremen which take a bit of getting used to.

Ethan Hayter – World Team Pursuit Champion at 19

In 2016 in Belgium Ethan Hayter won the tough junior races, Kuurne-Brussels-Kuurne, GP Serge Baguet, De Klijte-Heuvaelland, was in the winning team in junior European team pursuit champs and was British Madison champion with Joe Holt. Last year he won the u23 Berlin Six Day with Matt Walls, took a medal in every British track championship he rode and was part of the winning u23 Europeans team pursuit squad. This season he began training with the senior team in January and was world champion within weeks, at 19 years-of-age.

Norrie Drummond – Reminiscing with Quality Trivia

It’s hard to believe but it’s now 13 years since VeloVeritas’ Belgium and East Europe archivist, Ivan and I drove through to Strathaven to meet Mr. Norrie Drummond, former racing cyclist of note in Auld Scotia and Belgium and patron of the Drummond Trophy Road Race, one of few remaining ‘landmark’ races in Scotland. We chatted to Norrie recently to hear some more stories about the old times...

La Vuelta a España 2012 – Stage 17: Santander – Power 187.3 km

There were no ‘pistolero’ gestures in Santander – it wasn’t a moment for playing to the photo opportunity. Just sheer joy of a man being back where he belongs – if you’ve taken the knocks and clawed back, then you’ll know that feeling.

Andreas Müller – Sights are Set Higher These Days

I remember interviewing Andreas Müller a year or two ago and him telling me that he'd be happy to emulate the career of German former Six Day rider Gert Dörich, who was the 'Taxi Driver' par excellence during his long career which took in 163 Six Day races.

The First Tour Doon Hame

We're off to the first edition of the Tour Doon Hame. I grew up with 'The Girvan' - in fact, it took me a long time to stop myself from referring to it as the 'Grant's of Girvan.' Ronnie Boa won it way back when; Henk Lubberding won a stage, Sean Yates, Dave Lloyd, Tony Doyle, all famous names to associate with Girvan.