Saturday, February 26, 2011

Chasing Lance

I've been reading about the Tour De France with great anticipation of my own special experience of the race. While I'm not a huge fan of Lance, he has demonstrated a commitment and perseverance to achieve his goals that I admire in anyone. However, this book is much more about Le Tour, than it is about Lance.

In July 2005, over twenty million spectators flocked to France to see if anyone could beat Lance Armstrong in the Tour de France. Among them were hundreds of thousands .......of men.... who see the Tour as the ultimate buddy getaway, a jaunt replete with fine wines, delicious meals and lazy mornings under the Provencal sun. There were also huge clumps of Germans, Spaniards, Italians, Dutch ......a mini-UN that packed the fields and small towns along the way, showing how one can be drunk in 13 different languages. A unique combination of travelogue, humour and insider cycling critique (complete with interviews and insights from Armstrong), CHASING LANCE will be the only book to bring into focus the entire Tour experience. [from here]

For me, July 2011, I'm joining a tour group that provides us with the options of riding certain parts of the route each day, and then the chance to watch the world's elite male cyclists on the roads of France & Italy. This book has provided some valuable insight into the tactics of the pelaton, teams and individuals. It's be teaching me about how time trials work, what happens at the beginning and end of the race each day, and what I can expect when I get there.

A great fun read - distracting me from the news at the moment. Soon, I'm going to read Half the Sky: How to change the world by Kristof & Wudunn. Perhaps you could join me....


Karen said...

Do you remember when we read the Lance Armstrong biography for our bookclub? I certainly admire what he has achieved in his sport but I can't say I would like to have a chat with him! I have the Half a Sky book too!! Haven't started it yet though.

Jeanie said...

Rick has a dream to do that trip someday. There's a blogger called where he did this (but not on a tour; on his own -- a tad over the top, but pretty interesting in terms of following the tour. That's too loose for me! I want to know where my bed is!

We might be in Paris next summer, but probably not during the tour... sometime. I must tell him about this book.

I think you'll find Half the Sky is very moving. We did it in book club last summer.