Tour de France – Final Roundup

When we look back at the 2014 Tour de France and debate the outcome a couple of things should be kept well to the front of the mind: Astana’s Vincenzo Nibali extended his lead over his rivals on every single significant stage. On the cobbles, in the Vosges on Bastille Day, in the Alps & Pyrenees and in the time trial.┬áThat fact alone should mark him out as a champion of some distinction. His win also completes his set of all three Grand Tours and allows him to join a select group of some of the greatest names in cycling. He won more road stages than any champion since Eddy Merckx, elevating the achievement further. The side-note that he did it in his national champions jersey will have pleased his home fans and cycling history aficionados in equal measure.┬áHe focused his season entirely on these two weeks and utterly dominated the race – appearing serene even when coolly dispatching the podium pretenders with stage winning attacks. The words ‘worthy champion’ should not even be being debated.

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“Another Fine Mesh” – Pro-cycling clothing debate hots up

Cyclists are often a bit funny about their tan-lines. Cultivating a set of razor-sharp transitions, which switch instantly from the deepest mahogany to a blinding alabaster white, half way along a thigh or bicep is seen as one of the heights of being ‘pro’. Tan-lines like these tell of days in the saddle, not days on the beach. They are worn with more than just pride; for many they are a badge of honour.

Last week however, we saw a couple of cases of cases of pro team ‘tanning’ getting out of hand and raising questions about protection and performance.

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