Sunday, July 21, 2013

Stage 20 Annecy / Annecy – Semnoz – All over bar the shouting

It’s the final day in the mountains and the final serious day for the maillot juane. The 125km parcours takes the riders through the gorgeous area around Annecy with a mountain top finish at the ski station at Annecy - Semnoz. Richie Froome (Sky) went into the race with a handy five minute margin, his grip on the yellow is almost complete. The real battle of the day was for second and third on the podium.
Gabriel Gate had been out fishing in the streams and brought back a big haul of trout which he smoked improvising with saw dust and the overheated engine of the Orica-GreenWEDGE team bus. Gate turned out a magnificent Terrine de Truite Fumée au Concombre or cucumber and smoked trout terrine. No butter so the Beurremetric counter sits on 634g.
Halfway through the race Radioshack Leotard’s Jens Voigt took off like a scolded cat and at the age of 41, the oldest man in the peloton and indeed the world, led the peloton until 8km before the finish. Not even a rose bush that leapt from the side of the road in the neutral zone was going to stop him. Keep in mind Voigt was racing in the last century and here he is still going strong. No wonder ‘The Jensie’ is a legend with Tour fans everywhere.
Oh no, look out for that rose bush!

The outcome of the race would be decided in the final 7km on the climb to Annency – Semnoz. Alberto Contador (Saxo Tinkoff) lost his grip on second. Rockin’ Rodriquez (Katusha) succumbed to Froome and Quintana (Movistar) with the young Columbian taking the stage and second place in the General Classification, an outstanding effort for a Tour debut.
In other news Australia is abuzz with the announcement of Eros Ramazzotti’s NOI World Tour dates. How do we know? Well SBS has had the ads on high rotation during Le Tour broadcasts for the past week, that’s how we know. If this deal to get ‘My Favourite TdF Things’ recorded with Weird Al Yankovic falls through there may be an opening with Ramazzotti later in the year. Stay tuned.

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