Saturday, July 14, 2012
Saying Hey, Well Maybe You Should Stay.
Stage 12 - Saint Jean de Maurienne to Annonay Davezieux
I have about three minutes in which to write this, so I'll try to be concise. Jamesy and I head down to the bar, where we're eventually joined by Ollie and Sime. Ollie gets in Jamesy's ear and they take off down to the Night Cat. Sime and I score a couch and make ourselves comfortable for the evening. Eventually we're joined by Sime's mate Richard, who is an enthusiastic addition, possibly the only reason we're still awake at the end of the stage.
I'd suggested earlier that it would be a boring stage, and in terms of the overall GC battle it certainly was, but it was by no means boring at the front of the race. The break was obviously going to stay away, working their arses off together for nearly 200kms, and then would attack each other until they all fell apart. And this is pretty much how it went down. Eventually David Millar and Jean-Christophe Peraud are the only two left, and sprint for the line. They're elbow to elbow for the most part, but eventually Millar surges ahead.
He's a popular winner, especially when it is revealed later that he has won on the 45th anniversary of Tom Simpson's death. Millar, even with his tempestuous relationship with cycling, knows the history, and senses the importance of the date.
Sime seems keen to boot, but I'm not quite ready to head to bed just yet, so I ride with him down High St. We part ways at Separation and I continue riding.
I'm still riding the next morning, but in a much better mood. On Blyth St I see a kid trying to talk to a magpie, and looking so happy about the attempted conversation. That alone would've been enough to make my day, but minutes later I run into my friends Kieran and Sarah. Kieren was riding a bike that had originally belonged to his dad. One of his earliest memories, he told me, was sitting on a homemade seat bolted to the top tube, riding through the night as his dad pedaled and the dynamo light lit the way.
That was also pretty good.