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Robert Hunter’s last diary post of Tour de France 2012, can’t help but feel a little sad.

July 23, 2012
Stage 20 and the last stage for the Tour de France 2012, is a 120 km from Rambouillet to Paris Champs-Elysees. Robbie’s last words…
The final day of TDF is always a great day. Paris is probably the best setting of all the 3 Grand Tours Finals.The sun was out, and the full 6 kms circuit was packed full with people at least 3 or 4 deep. It made for a brilliant day for the fans.

Not that many sprinters left in the race but the ones that were left were the BEST in the world.

Greipel; Cavendish; Farrar; Goss; & Sagan were not going to let the last sprint chance go to waste and let a break take the glory- like Vino a good few years ago who hit out with a now retired Brad Mcgee 3kms to go and won the stage.

A few attacks happened but nothing got more than 30 seconds and with 3 teams controlling, it was more for the fans excitement than anything.

The final 3 kms were great to see as a sprinter. Lotto; Sky; and Greenedge were all trying to set up individual trains and lead their sprinters out. In the end Sky somehow got the better of everybody (Again) and an incredible Cavendish hit out with over 300 meters to go.

I was certain that Goss, who was on his wheel, would get the better of him as it was early to go. Normally the 3rd position out the corner is the best place to be for the win.

Somehow when Cavendish hit out he went with suck speed that everybody behind him was on the limit and could do nothing.  Goss moved out a meter but quickly came back in to take advantage of the slipstream. And even there he was battling to stay on terms with Cavendish.

The only rider who could have come past Cav was possibly Sagan as he came from a long way back and made ground of Cav. Then again- it’s easy to say he could have, would have. He never had the right position so ended up second instead.

Four straight victories in Paris for Cav, that is impressive to say the least.

A few more stats:
  • 7 stages of this year’s tour (that’s 1 in 3) were won by british riders;
  • 2 riders on the podium;
  • even more incredible is that all these results came from a British team that will be representing at the Olympics in a week.

Bradley Wiggins

The race, in my opinion, was a bit boring with the strongest riders in the race not attacking even once BUT walking away with the best places on top of the Podium.
I know you don’t win the TDF for free and its not a gift- so they definitely worked for it, but how much better would it have been if Wiggins at least once laid it on the line….. and Chris Froome was let to attack fully in the mountains?One thing I do know is next year with the return of a few more riders, Sky won’t have it so easy and it will sure be a lot more exciting than this year. Also being the 100th edition of the TDF, the route will be spectacular I’m sure.

Anyway I was not too happy to be sitting on the couch watching the TDF finish, especially since I was apart of the race 2 weeks ago. It’s the best feeling to actually end in Paris and then having a bit of a night out on the town. 3 weeks of stress and hard racing left behind and a lot of excited riders, fans, and team staff all make a big night of Paris.

I am going to do EVERYTHING to be there next year- try win a stage as it will be my 10th TDF start- and then finish it off with a few drinks in the best South African Pub in the world. La Pomme D’eve. It’s run by a South African guy by the name of George who is a great host every time I’m there. Let’s make it a date. All South Africans who follow the tour next year need to be there for the Final nights send off!!

See you all there in 2013…..

Robbie

With that we feel a little sad to say cheers….. so let’s finish off with a bang- our final winner of the South African Sharp Barracuda Garmin shirt signed by our blogger himself, is @benniebeukes        (We will be in touch soon soon).
Time saves lives, Helivac saves both!
“Helivac is a complete emergency medical solution comprising affordable air medical transportation with advanced, rapid response medical care and state of the art equipment for all members through a single emergency number: 0861 HELIVAC (South Africa)”
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One Comment leave one →
  1. Rory Harrop permalink
    July 23, 2012 4:37 pm

    We will be there at the finish of next years TDF, for sure will be making plans to visit the La Pomme D’eve, maybe before hand as well.
    Thanks for the Pros insight.
    Rory.

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