Tour de France 2017

Tour de France logo smallIn September this year, I will pay another visit to the French Alps for my very own Tour de France 2017.

Other than during my previous Tour in 2014, when we switched locations four times, I have picked a single location for our base camp this year: Briançon.

Like Bourg-Saint-Maurice and Jausiers in 2014, the city of Briançon is strategically located at the base of several mountain passes…

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Cols of the Swiss Stage

Tour de Suisse logo smallIn June last year, at the end of my Giro d’Italia 2015, I rode an entirely ‘Swiss Stage’ including the Gotthard (Tremola road), the Furka and the Grimsel.

You can read a report on that stage here – it offered some of the most stunning views I have encountered so far and I am determined to get back there for more, during a longer stay.

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Giro d’Italia 2015 – The Stats

Giro d’Italia 2015 – The Stats

Giro 2015 VeloviewerAlmost a week has passed since my final ride in Switzerland and I’m slowly coming to terms with the fact that my Giro d’Italia 2015 is over and that it’s mostly going to be the flats of my backyard again as far as riding zee baik is concerned.

Oh well, we had an unforgettable time in Italy and Switzerland once more and collected enough memories during those rides to last for months.

Despite the current heatwave – the temperature is expected to rise to a healthy 40 degrees Celsius – the wind is continuing to do its best to make the efforts of my rides resemble climbing up another mountain.

The only difference with (most of) the wind I endured during my Giro, is that it’s not freezing cold – it’s more like a mistral, which is really not any better…

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Giro d’Italia 2015 – The Swiss Stage

Tour de Suisse logo smallThe Swiss Stage

Earlier this year, when we decided that a “Tour de Suisse” was not going to happen, I did plan on climbing some of the great passes there on our way home.

As it was going to be a one day event, I had to limit the amount of climbs.

The most obvious road to take was the one up and over the Gotthard, Furka and Grimsel – my own short version of the Alpenbrevet

The weather looked fine for the Friday, but we needed to transfer to Airolo first, a 3.5 hour trip.

We got up shortly after 5 am and took off around 7 – as usual, the trip took “a little” longer, mainly because of traffic.

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Giro d’Italia 2015 – Stage 11

Stelvio Times Two

As much I would like to have had another shot at the Mortirolo, either from Grosio or Mazzo, I prioritized the Stelvio, in particular the Prato side.

Since Friday will be another tough day, I shall use Thursday to recuperate – climbing up the Stelvio is not much of a recuperation, so today it was “Stelvio or bust”…

As we are located in Bormio, I had the choice to get over the Foscagno to Livigno, onwards to Switzerland and then over the Ofen pass to circle around to Prato on the other end of the Stelvio.

While I seriously considered that option, I eventually decided to just get to Prato via the short route, i.e. over the Stelvio…

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