The Tour de France gets underway tomorrow with an individual time trial through Monaco that will serve as the prologue to the race. Sunday, the riders will head out onto the road for the first real leg of the race, a mostly flat stage 187km (116 miles) that will favor the sprinters. In preparation for the start of the big race, I have a pair of articles on Lance Armstrong that give us an inside look at the seven time Tour winner’s comebacks, one after he defeated cancer and another taking place now.
The first interview is from Outside and it looks back to a time when Lance was just another rider in the Peloton. The young American upstart had beaten cancer, but had not yet proven himself on the world’s stage, and while he was an inspiration for his efforts just to get back on the bike, cycling fans had no idea what kind of rider he really was. The article goes through each phase of the first Tour that Lance won, giving insights into what he was thinking at the time, and his approach the various stages. When he emerged on the Champs Elysees in the Yellow Jersey, it was an amazing triumph on many levels, but it was just the start of things to come.
Men’s Journal brings us the second interview, which focuses more on Lance’s most recent comeback at the age of 37. The article gives us a glimpse at his training and preparation, as well as the the reasons he’s riding once again. The author also notes his love for Twitter and how his “tweets” have helped him to lose his “robot” reputation and show Lance in a different light.
Both are excellent stories and should put you in the mood for the start of the Tour tomorrow. It’s going to be a wide open race in my opinion, with some great riders pressing for the Yellow Jersey. Can the 37 year old with a three year layoff hang with the young guns over the next three weeks? We’re about to find out.
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