Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Stage 17

Image swiped from

Image swiped from this website. shows a runner on the road to L'Alpe d'Huez.

Todays stage finishes on L'Alpe d'Huez, the grand-daddy of the HC climbs of the Tour de France. 21 hairpin turns in the final climb. The Hors Categorie climbs separate all of the contenders and determine who will win the race. Yesterdays stage was in the Alps and crossed the highest point in the tour this year, over 9,000 feet. The mountain landscape is breath taking. The climbs are brutal and are captured well on tv. Would be fun to go see one in person sometime. The descent claimed 2 riders. John-Lee Augustyn had a spectacular crash on the final descent. He was the leader at the top of the mountain but was overtaken on the descent. He went into a turn to hot and went over the edge. His bike continued to slide down the side of the mountain and he had to have help from a fan to get back to the road to wait for a team car to bring him another bike. Christian Vande Velde lost time on the climb and then crashed on the descent and lost even more time, he gave up his 5th spot in the overall classification.

EB is back. We did 4 x 1 mile repeats at the Stones River Battlefield. Wanted to do a tempo, but actually the mile repeats went well. Felt really strong throughout. One thing about EB she likes to go negative, complete opposite of the way I run. Hopefully some of that will rub off on me. The final repeat starts on a small rise, so the first quarter is downhill. I bet her she couldn't run it slow, sure enough, 1:28 at the split. Little hotter than 5k pace, but doable. Lost a second or 2 on the next quarter and decided to maintain to the finish. Still comfortable at the 3/4 mile mark. On the final stretch home she blasts by and I'm thinking, she's just pushing to the finish. I maintained my pace. She crossed in 6:04, the pace I thought I'd nailed. I came across in 6:07, relaxed to much on the last quarter and should have just pushed with her. Good to see I was able to hold that pace, number 1 and in the heat, number 2. I may try and get Speedy to pace me through 2 miles at that pace, 2 weeks out before my target race. Hardest thing is not going out to fast and maintaining to the finish.

1 comment:

Lisa said...

Makes me want to go watch the tour.