What a roller coaster the first week of this years Tour de France has been. I made the journey up to England for one of the most incredible weekends of cycling for Le Grand Départ. Managing to get out on the bike myself, I relaxed under the blue skies, caught up with friends and talked over our predictions for the tour. Little did we know how much carnage would unravel over these first days. Whilst boarding the ferry, a cursory glance to the skies confirmed the change in weather. Long gone was the beautiful sunshine of the Yorkshire Dales, replaced by heavy rain to greet the riders for the infamous stage 5 and the cobbles. Chris Froome was to abandon early on, having fallen before even reaching the feared cobbled section. For the rest it felt like an exercise in damage limitation.
The image above was from the Champagne region yesterday as we made our way to the stage. Not quite the picture postcard image that I had in mind whilst planning the first week but quite fitting for how the race has so far panned out. With the mountains on the horizon, it can be sure that the second week will throw up many more twists and turns along the way.