Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Sougniers life

We just left the start line - a bit early which sux for me. I don't get to film the team meeting. The cam I have in car with us will be useless as the radio is on. More Mike Jackson. Uuugh. And Frits is only speaking German with Ahim in an attempt to keep me from usuing them in the movie. They only speak English when they bust my balls.

The climb is very, very long and steep. Gorgeous villages with fans lining the course. All standing. Every so often will be a little old lady on a bike with bread in the front basket. Almost no overweight people. I will surely have a tough time to acclimate back to America.
The sougniers remind me of this as the joke about Americans in McDonalds ordering triple cheeseburgers and supersize diet cokes.

6 more days. Then I can begin the decompression process. Its almost like scuba diving but I've been under for three weeks. My nerves are shot and I feel a tinge of car sickness. An hour behind us the race has started but you would think the riders were just off our back bumper. Ahim loves to rally. "FULL GAS!" he yells as we rail another corner up. We are in what I call the sponsor slalom. Blasting up the road thru the "publicity parade" - a daily convoy of sponsor floats. Cars adorned with an array of dancing bears, yetis, and lots of girls who toss the crowds everything from newspapers and T-shirts to foam hands and sausages. Many vehicles have no windshields and I imagine the drivers hate rainy days like hell. You know how crazy the crowds are when riders go thru? Imagine the same crowds in a mad scrum to get free candy. Then add in wanna-be Indy drivers who instead were hired by a pro cycing team driving thru the middle of it all. I think they try to get to the feed zone fast as possible so they can have an hour of downtime because there is none otherwise. They wake early to pack cars and prepare team lunches. Then the race routine and feedzone. After the race they give massages before dinner. After dinner they prepare for the next day.

All in a day of the sougnier.
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