Dozens of SMS and emails flash up on my BlackBerry each day, most are chaff and get deleted after a quick glance — but when one comes in to tell me that ‘Michael Mørkøv excluded from the Vuelta by WADA’ that makes me take notice.
La Vuelta a España 2008. The last day for us, but the sun was out, Cudillero and Asturias was looking at it's best and Bill Medley and Jennifer Warne were on Kiss FM; "I've had, the time of my life," - damn right! Cudillero is a nice spot, not unlike one of the 'smugglers villages' in Cornwall, piled high into a steep cleft in the cliffs. We were there before the teams and had time for a wander, a coffee and to buy an Asturias T-shirt, I'm 53, it's sad, I know.
The weather was glorious on Sunday morning in Oviedo. After liberating the car from the car park - at huge expense - we were off, and stumbled right onto race route. The direction arrows made life very easy as we followed the whole 100 mile parcours. Race route ran through El Padrun, a tiny hill top village, in fact it was the first classified climb of the day. Four years ago, Davie and I stumbled upon El Padrun whilst searching for the Angliru.
Hola! It's 15.10 Saturday and we're two kilometres from the finishing line of the Angliru - it's cold, nippy hand, freezy feet cold. It's been glorious weather until now, but low cloud has descended and we're a wee bit panicky about photography, albeit there's around two hours 'til race time. Davie had us up early, we got lost trying to exit Oviedo in the correct direction, but on the second pass we picked up the A630, hung a right to El Foz and in no time were drinking café con leche in a café at the foot of the Angliru.
Hola from Comillas! "Adios Valverde" - so says the sports paper AS in response to Alejandro dropping 3' 23" yesterday in what should have been an innocuous transition stage - those Spanish journos aren't shy. Sleep came easily last night; but I was on the laptop for 07.00 to get my Angliru piece written.