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Robert Hunter Stage 2 “Anything but normal”

July 2, 2012
Stage 2 of the Tour De France, and our man was all strapped up and easy to see. (Especially in that beautiful kit.) The stage was 207 km from Vise to Tournai with high point of just 190 metres, the stage is one of the flattest of the entire race and the first genuine opportunity for the sprint specialist.

The start to today’s stage. (Photo courtesy of http://www.cyclingnews.com)

It was a strange start to the second day of TDF- nobody wanted to attack!
Normally, as the gun goes there is always a french guy who let’s rip as hard as he can in hope that he gets in the break. Then when the peleton is fed up, the peleton will let a couple of attacks slip off the front, thereby keeping pace steady with no aggravating attacks taking place.

Today after 30kms- we were still all together and nobody had even tried. Not normal- in fact, really weird!

Eventually, we took a corner and one guy got 2 meters on us, everybody was saying “let him go”.  (We practically were pulling brakes to get a guy away?) Its something I have never seen before! In the end 3 guys just dawdled away and everybody was happy.

It was an easy day so to speak. We just rode along and only in the last 25 kms it became the real TDF stuff. At that point we were going Mach 1.
The road was incredibly wide which was great but some people still don’t get it!

So the thing is this….. Normally people are bitching about having to stay up front till the last 3 kms and usually I kind of understand. The roads are smaller- if you are at the back and some one crashes, as a GC guy you can lose time quickly and mess up your TDF for no fault of your own. It makes for some scary moments as there is only so much space on a road and “way to many” guys trying to occupy it.

On a day like today the road was soooooooo wide and there were still some idiots trying to get in the top 10 places to keep out of trouble. The fact is that if you sat at the back, you were only about 10 meters behind the front guys anyway. (Exaggeration I know but work with me.)
Shit,  I am  starting to think some bike racers need to pass an IQ exam before they can go pro!

The final came up REAL fast and with a narrowing of the road at 3 kms to go we had to be in front. Miller; Ty and I did well and were in a perfect position from “3 kms to go”.We let the Lotto guys do the work while Miller and I kept Tyler out of trouble. By the time we hit under the 1 km banner, I got him up on Sagan and Greipels wheel. I think I got out of the way about 600m to go, confident that he could run a top 3.

Only problem was a lot of guys put on a huge effort to come from way back and dragged a bunch of guys up with them, one being Hutorovitch.  He found himself taking a lot of wind and smashed Tyler into the barriers to take his place. Oh well. Never worked out perfectly but I am feeling much better and I’m sure Tyler can be right up there as well.
Next Kick is in 2 days and I am sure it is going to be a whole different show.

Oh yes, before I forget- I was wearing my new Giro AKA “Tony Hawk” today and got a lot of comments about it. (Most of them stating that it looks rather amusing…… ) I kind of agree, but it is apparently a huge saving because of the aerodynamics. The best is the way people approach you and what they say to try recover. It’s like “are you kidding me that helmet looks bad” but then quickly say,” but yours in black looks so much better than the rest.”

Its hilarious.
Kind of reminds me when some one realises they said something they shouldn’t have and then before they get punched in the mouth make a weak attempt at fixing it 🙂
To be honest, I kind of enjoyed wearing it AND I think it is good for sprint stages in my honest opinion.

Tomorrow is a hard finish and I’m sure some one like, oh wait……. maybe Sagan is going to win!!

But as you have seen today, he is beatable. Especially when it’s a fast finish…. maybe a surprise tomorrow!

Robbie

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11 Comments leave one →
  1. Rory Harrop permalink
    July 2, 2012 7:55 pm

    Even with a pain in the arse, you are doing the SA champions jersey proud, it always gives me goose bumps to see it in the TDF….stage win on the cards ?? sure hope so. Stay upright and stay safe for the rest of the tour.

  2. July 2, 2012 8:06 pm

    Good luck Robbie! Our thoughts and dreams are riding with you!

    • July 3, 2012 11:38 am

      I think if some of us could be riding with him- we would. lol.

  3. July 3, 2012 1:26 am

    Thanks! pretty nice looking ride overall. Watching from the overhead camera when the
    group is all together it is like a very colourful, smoothly kinetic bunch of crayons flowing
    along. Tony Martin looks uncomfortable at times with that cast on the broken scaphoid.

  4. Sherry-Lee permalink
    July 3, 2012 1:29 am

    Thanks for the updates! Well done on equalising the score with Daryl Impey! Look forward to seeing what today holds in store.

  5. Liz permalink
    July 3, 2012 9:09 am

    Well done and good luck, give them gas

  6. July 3, 2012 2:23 pm

    after that last ‘little’ pile up out in the fields I
    really look forward to your note tonight!
    #109 A Grizkov? has to go to hospital,
    sadness to lose a guy already

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