Sure, everyone knows the Tour de France. But cycling is a common sport in France, something that goes on all year ‘round. You’ll see folks out on a Sunday dressed just like the racers. Usually they’re in cafes, but hey, some even ride bikes.
Right now, the professional Tour Mediterraneen has finished its first stage. The stages are strung out along the sea, and the race, although featuring some big names in international bicycle racing, isn’t televised, not even in France. But no matter, the internet will find a way to cover such things, and steephill.tv is the address I use to find out about racing in Europe.
In any case, the finish of the first stage of the Tour Mediterraneen was quite interesting. You can see the pictures and stare in amazement as they depict the finish. Laurent Mangel does one of those arm-pumping, I-won-it-and-you-didn’t things as the front tire of his bike just touches the finish line, but then, on his left, Thomas Voeckler has managed to put a bit more of his tire over the line.
The 2011 Tour Méditerranéen runs from February 9-13.
And bike racing fans may wish to note that famed photog Graham Watson has authored Graham Watson’s Tour de France Travel Guide: The Complete Insider’s Guide to the Tour! and it’s garnered some great reviews. So start your travel planning. If a little bicycle race is added enticement, then so be it!