Sunday, December 5, 2021
HomeBlogsEx-Garmin Physio Toby Watson's BlogThe Final Efforts: Stage 18 (bunchie)

The Final Efforts: Stage 18 (bunchie)

-

The Final Efforts. We’re on the downhill slope for this race now, and the fatigue is starting to show. It’s getting tougher and tougher to chisel our heads off the pillow each morning, and the coffees are having smaller and smaller effects.

Sunglasses stay on when inside as they’re keeping our eyeballs from falling out.

I guess the riders are tired too.

Today was another flat stage, the first in about a week, so I think every person involved in the race expected the sprinter teams to be to the fore once again.

They delivered a bunch sprint as expected, and Garmin-Transitions were once again in the thick of things.

Millar and Martijn delivered Jules to the front of the show at the right time, and Jules crossed the line in second place.

The Final Efforts
Jules heading for second behind Cav.

Yet another excellent result, among many for the team this month. These blokes rock! Next up is the time trial in Bordeaux, followed by the final stage in Paris.

As it’s about 600km between the two cities, the logistics of getting all of the staff, vehicles and equipment to where they need to be for the final stage has been complicated.

The riders and directors catch a dedicated train in the morning, so are sweet as apples, but the rest of us are on marathon drives at a million o’clock after the stage finishes. Good times!

Speaking of times, I’ll be on the course today giving extra time checks for the TT.

Always good to have as much info as possible! Here’s to the Garmin-Transitions train rolling on to yet more success!

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

Marco Pinotti – Giro Time Trial Winner

It was way back in 1999 when Marco Pinotti signed his first pro contract, with Lampre Daikin. The Italian team is still with us – and so is the time trial specialist from Bergamo.

Jack Bauer – He’s Why We Love This Sport!

It was a Saturday night in the summer of 2009 and I was driving ‘up the Town’ to the movies. I pulled the car over, answered the mobile and had my first chat with the man. VeloVeritas's pundit in residence Viktor had spotted this New Zealand laddie who was burning up the Flanders kermis scene in the colours of Anglo/Belgian team, Kingsnorth Wheelers – Jack Bauer.

Callum MacGregor – First Time Working on the Tour de France 2015

With Dave and Martin on family holidays it was down to Callum MacGregor to step in and put up with me for the annual mad whirl around France. As an experienced racer and fan but a first timer working on the race I thought it would be good to get his impressions of Le Grande Boucle. And there's time to spare on the long haul from L'Alpe d'Huez, north to Paris.

Le Tour de France 2017 – Stage 19: Embrun – Salon-de-Provence, 222.5km. Edvald Boasson-Hagen at last!

To paraphrase the late, great Donna Summer; ‘they work hard for the money.’ Those Sky boys. Perhaps Henao had a few mountain days where Sir David and Le Chien Froomey didn’t think the Columbian did enough graft – he made up for it on Stage 19 though, riding tempo remorselessly on the front of the peloton. Spectacular? No. Damn hard work? For sure.

Giro d’Italia 2015 – Stage 21, Turin – Milan; Eeeel-yoh!

Well, as our amigo Dave is won't to say at this stage; "our creds are no good to us now." Just a curiosity on the windscreen; the Giro is won and lost, Contador confirmed as one of the all time great stage racers - he's won all three Grand Tours - one of only six men in history to do so, along with Nibali, Gimondi, Anquetil, Hinault and Merckx, and now stands fourth in the all time Grand Tour winners list. The route from Torino to Milano today was as bland as you could get but Radio Nostalgia was cool and our coffee stop was a cracker. The Milano circuit was similarly bland and it's one aspect where the Giro doesn't quite get it right but Iljo Keisse and Luke Durbridge delivered an exciting finale as you get.

Le Tour de France 2012 – Stage 14: Limoux – Foix, 192 km. Tacks Cause Kišerlovski Crash

I was speaking to Vik, the other day.I shan’t use the word which he did to describe Brad’s opponents, but it wasn’t complimentary. Limoux - After yesterday’s display, it’s hard to disagree; whilst there was drama at the end with Kišerlovski crash – more of which later – when we drove the course it seemed to us a perfect opportunity for Nibali and his descending skills.

At Random

Just a typical Wednesday afternoon in Kermis Belgium

172 starters on a Wednesday afternoon... only in Kermis Belgium. This was a hard race from the off, again typical of Belgium. With only one amateur race taking place on this day it meant this race was full-on. A couple of crashes in the peloton on the same corner on consecutive laps didn't help matters...

The VeloVeritas Years – 2017: Bastille Day at Le Tour!

We've been covering the Tour de France for many years, and like most people who love cycle racing, it's one of the highlights of the year. Bastille Day at Le Tour is special, and the pressure on the French riders to perform is intense - we were lucky to be on the race when Warren Barguil took a fantastic win ahead of Nairo Quintana and Bert Contador. Fantastic weather, great racing, a change to catch up with old pals Adam Hansen and Jack Bauer, meant July 14th was a memorable day for both of us and is our pick for a highlight for 2017.

Evan Oliphant’s Tour of the Med, Part One

The Tour of the Med, a nice way to ease into the season; a big bunch floating along under early sunshine with a bunch sprint at the end? Not quite! How about 95 K in 1:45 with the peloton ripped apart from the gun and conditions so cold that the contents of your bottle are frozen solid in five minutes?

The Colin Sturgess Story – Part Two

We left Colin Sturgess in Part One telling us about his time as a teenager racing in the Commonwealth Games and in the Olympics, and turning pro for the Belgian team ADR.

Luke Davison – Loving the Belgian Style

VeloVeritas & Co. always tries to keep an eye on what’s happening in the Heartland of Flanders. If it’s not Vik, then it’s Dave who tips us of about who’s burning up the kermises – the name of 23 year-old Australian Luke Davison caught his eye with back to back kermis wins.

Aidan Duff – Part Two; Moving from Riding to Selling to Manufacturing with Fifty One Bikes

In Part One of our interview with Irish rider Aidan Duff we heard about his six years based in Nantes, three of them riding for Jean Rene Bernadeau's top flight Vendee U squad, his experiences riding with Thomas Voeckler in the team, and his wins in the Herald Sun Tour and Tour of Brittany.  We continue our chat by asking Aidan why he stopped racing and how he moved into the business side of the game, as well as the unusual methods involved in producing his custom-sized carbon fibre frames and bike builds...