We did the Première Manche - the first round - of A Travers riding across France from Dieppe to Marseille in the summer of 2009, and it was the original inspiration for this blog. The plan to put the 'band back together again' for another go in 2013 for the second installment fell on stoney ground, with life just getting in the way for too many of us, much to our disappointment. However, our enthusiasm for the bike remains undimmed, and so I'll keep posting my thoughts on the diverse and beautiful facets of the sport regardless. But there's bound to be another big 'adventure ride' coming soon - quite possibly in Italy - so potentially a name change too: Attraverso l'Italia in Bicicletta anyone?

Tuesday, 3 February 2009

Etape du Tour Recon

I make no apologies here for focussing on the Ventoux at this stage of the blog, since it does have a special place in all our hearts. It'll (hopefully) be the final major obstacle on our ride to Marseille ... unless of course the CGT have organised wild-cat strikes on the outskirts of the town and blocked the road. We might have to get a bit 'punchy' in that case, à la Hinault.

I'll post some stuff about the other zillions of climbs we're doing in the Massif Central later, but for the moment here's another bit of evocative footage, from a recon ride for the Etape which takes place a few days after we've whizzed up it. I can see us all staying together as real comrades, until that final corner where each of us unleashes what we hope will be a devastating sprint to cross the top first. It happened in 1989.