Archive for the ‘Tour de France’ Category

Some TDF Stages in the Pyrénées Threatened by Floods

By Jennifer Sage On June 20, 2013 No Comments

It is now a little over a week before the start of the Tour de France. Make sure to stay tuned here on the Sage Advice blog as I post updates leading up to, and during the Tour so you can use these tidbits in your Tour de France classes in your indoor cycling classes.

The most pressing news is the intense rains and snow runoff in the Pyrénées, which may impact the stage route, especially Stage 9. They haven’t made any official changes to the route yet, but stay tuned. Here is a good article with some great photos of the flood damage. I’ve ridden through some of these villages, which are often situated next to the many fabulous rivers in the area. I can imagine how flooding can be very damaging.


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My Thoughts on Lance Pre-Oprah

By Jennifer Sage On January 17, 2013 No Comments

Tomorrow evening will be a big deal for cycling fans and cancer survivors around the world. Even the casual observer may tune in as Lance Armstrong confesses to the empathetic Oprah Winfrey and the world about taking performance-enhancing drugs after a lifetime of lying and cheating.

This is a photo I took at the top of the Col de Croix Fry in the Alpes in 2004, where I had taken a group with my bicycle tour company, Viva Travels. Lance won the stage, although he tried to “gift” it to Floyd Landis, who was unable to chase down the leader at the time, Andreas Kloden of Team Telekom. Leading him up the col is Landis; over his right shoulder is Jan

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The Jensie roars to glory at Beaver Creek and I wimp out

By Jennifer Sage On August 24, 2012 No Comments

On Wednesday August 22, I spent the entire day at over 11,000 feet near the top of Independence Pass for stage 3 of the USA Pro Cycling Challenge. It was one of the most exciting stages I’ve ever seen, including all the Tour de Frances (lots) and one Giro d’Italia I’ve been to. I’ll be posting my videos and the few photos I took in the next day or two.

Then, today I was going to go to Stage 4, which ended at the ski area of Beaver Creek, only about 25 miles from my house. I was feeling stressed because the amount of work I have (I am admittedly behind on some writing), so when I heard the weather report with a 95% chance of heavy rain

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Jens Voigt is human, and causes me to reflect on my high-school running days

By Jennifer Sage On July 24, 2012 2 Comments

I will rue the day that Jens Voigt announces his retirement from professional cycling. But we cycling fans know it’s just around the corner. At 40 years, he is one of the oldest in the peloton, and has had an illustrious career behind him. He is well-known as one of the most cherished riders in the pro-peloton, not only by fans but by other riders.

I’m not sure if he’s ready to announce his retirement or not, but I found this today, a translated article that seems to say his wife has granted him permission to ride one more year. (He is such a family man, another reason to love him!) If that’s so, I will not miss next year’s tour just to see him ride. Who cares about who

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Is there any doubt that cyclists are the toughest athletes??

By Jennifer Sage On July 16, 2012 1 Comment

Jens Voigt continues to astound the cycling world with his ability to endure suffering. Is there any doubt that cyclists are some of the toughest athletes out there? Not in my mind!

He also continues to provide indoor cycling instructors with the greatest sound bites to use in class. Here’s another one for you that he posted about today’s stage (Stage 15 on July 16, 2012):

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Stage 11 Tour de France – some great riding and strategy!

By Jennifer Sage On July 13, 2012 No Comments

I’ve been so busy preparing for the IDEA conference in San Diego I hadn’t had a chance to watch a stage of the Tour de France until this morning. And what a stage it was, this Queen Stage of this year’s tour! The Col de la Croix de Fer is the highest point in this year’s race. I’ve been up that monster (but from the other side of the Col du Glandon) and it’s quite a bear, but so beautiful.

Let’s take a look at what happened int he stage today. It might increase your understanding of some of the tactics and traditions of bike racing.

The previous day was the first big day in the mountains with one monster climb, the Col du Grand Colombier (not to be confused

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Ma Bicyclette rocks!! Get this song now!

By Jennifer Sage On July 2, 2012 No Comments

This is a song that I can’t keep a secret! Every single cycling instructor out there needs to know about this song. It’s perfect for your Tour de France stages or just for fun. Please don’t just strip this song off of Youtube – support these awesome young artists and buy it for $1 now!

From the Youtube video: “I am constantly high fiving Freddie Mercury with my mind & pretty much want this to be our generation’s version of Bicycle Race by Queen.”

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Would you like to go to the Tour de France?!

By Jennifer Sage On November 1, 2011 1 Comment

Those who know me well, know I am a Tour de France fanatic. I love simulating Tour de France stages in my Spinning® classes, and have created an extensive program (audio and visual) to teach Spinning® and indoor cycling instructors how to put together exciting Tour de France programs in their cycling studios. You may or may not know that I have owned a bicycle tour company since 2003 and have led and organized bicycle tours in Europe since 1989!

I took this photo in the Alpes in 2004 - Landis, Lance, Ulrich and Basso on the Col de la Croix Fry

I’ve been a guide on several tours to the Tour (1999 – with Greg Lemond, and 2000), and taken several of my

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…now you can see what a 23.5% grade looks like!

By Jennifer Sage On September 5, 2011 5 Comments

Two blog posts ago I wrote about how I taught Stage 15 in my Spinning® class, especially up the Angliru, the steepest climb of the Vuelta (and perhaps of any stage race in the world).

Now you can see the finish right here, up the 23.5% section. Can you say “ouch”? Juan José Cobo, the winner of the stage, seems to fly up it at a fairly consistent cadence (and not a slow one at that). Was it lower gears?

Watch at the 2:15 and 2:43 mark, as Bradley Wiggins and his teammate Froome flounder and waver back and forth, struggling to turn the pedals.

Any of you want to climb this monster?

Click here to see some awesome photos of this climb.


EDIT: If the country you’re in does not allow you to view this video, go to Steephill.tv and scroll down to stage 15, underneath the race standings are

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How I taught the STEEPEST stage of the Vuelta – stage 15

By Jennifer Sage On September 3, 2011 3 Comments

Stage 15 Vuelta a Espana 2011

This is Stage 15 of this year’s Vuelta, which will take place tomorrow, September 4th, 2011. I taught this in my class on Thursday, and posted it as a detailed profile for ICA members this past week. The way the climbs are laid out makes for an excellent and exciting profile to teach in your indoor cycling and Spinning® classes.

But….there is something very ominous about this stage. You see that final climb? There is NOTHING, nothing like it in any tour de France stage. It has an average grade of 10%, which is pretty dang hard as it is. But there is one segment that is 23.5%!


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