Sunday, July 21, 2013

July 21, a new king

As Belgium gets a new king, Chris Froome is crowned the new Roi du 100er edition du Tour de France. Kittel est le prince des Champs.

I've enjoyed watching the Tour more than other years, and with reason. A lackluster Cadel Evans and the early departure of Belgium's hope Jurgen Van den Broeck aside, this Tour had a lot of excitement.

A true king
Although Chris Froome started the race as the favorite, it was not handed to him. His rivals didn't waste any time and started attacking from the first day in the Pyrenees. Unlike other years where you waited for some action only to be disappointed time after time: yes, Schleck brothers, I am talking to you. Throughout the tour the attacks kept coming. More over, Froome didn't just defend his yellow jersey. He attacked, won stages and earned it thread for thread. A calm and humble Froome rightfully crowns himself the winner of the 2013 Tour de France.

Picture: The Guardian

The battle among the knights
On the flat stages, it remained exciting. There was the battle royal between the sprinters. Cavendish got unseated by mister-needs-a-new-barber Marcel Kittel. Although Andre Greipel got a seat at the sprinter's banquet as well.

The day they attacked the castle
You would expect the legendary ascend to the Mont Ventoux or the double Alpe D'Huez stage to be the most exciting ones. Nope. The flat stage 13 between Tours and Saint-Amand-Montrond was cycling at its best. First, an unlucky Valverde got behind. Then, Froome and Sky were put on defense when Quickstep, Belkin and Saxo took advantage of the cross winds. It was fighting for every second. Finally, Cavendish finished it off nicely.

New blood
Surprises came from Nairo Quintana, the dynamic Dutch duo Bauke Molema and Laurens Ten Dam, and Jan Bakelants who won a stage and got the yellow jersey for Belgium for a couple of days. 

The jester
It was of course of no surprise that Sagan, winning the green jersey, would bring a little show as he wheelied through the mountains and across the finish lines. 

Relive the Tour with

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