Tour Le Tour
Life Should be an Adventure
OK, let's get straight to the good stuff! I'm going to race in the
PEdAL ED Transcontinental, a race across Europe. It starts in Belgium,
ends in Greece and hits four checkpoints along the way. In between
those checkpoints you can chose your own route, you just have to do it
by bike! Oh, and it is a single stage. So if you want to race all
night, you race all night. And they put the checkpoints on the bumpy
bits. First one to the finish wins. Somewhere around 3,800km, about
60km of vertical ascent, and last year the winner took 8 days. It is
going to be beautiful! So why not read all about it at the Transcontinental Blog? Don't forget to subscribe while you are there...
I hope you like the background. The photo is of one of the more spectacular
sunrises I was lucky enough to see in Italy in 2013. That's right, a
sunrise. Get it? The symbolism here is pretty blunt, people. It's the
dawn of a
new adventure! This one
is going to be a little different, in a big way. I like challenges, and
I have done a lot of things that other people see as being so far from
their reach that, if not actually impossible, they are at least the
greatest of adventures. For many of those things though I disagree. I’m
talking here about things like an iron-distance triathlon, or a long
hard multistage bike race. To me these things certainly count as
challenges, and they are great fun and I love them (in that sick,
twisted way that endurance athletes tend to love/hate their races) but
I don’t see them as adventures.
If I pay an entry fee and someone gives me a number to pin on, it tends
to shift things from adventure to race, in my mind. Adventures tend to
be more like getting on my bike and riding the Tour de France with no
official organisation, or heading to a brand new country and figuring
out how to survive there. Basically an adventure doesn’t need to be
competition, and usually isn’t. There is some cross-over, things like
adventure racing are obviously candidates for both categories, and the
very first Tour de Timor was pretty much both, but for the most part
something is either an adventure OR a race. But this one is different.
It is a race. It has an organiser. I will pay some money, and I will
pin on a number (metaphorically). But it is pretty much the absolute
There is a start line. There is a finish line. There are several points
to go through in between, and there is tracking of competitors for
safety. There are some people taking pictures in random places, there
are a few prizes, and there is a party at the end. But you’re
on your own. You choose your own route, you carry your own gear, you
figure out how to get yourself across the borders and past the dogs.
You are on your own. With a party at the end. I can’t think of a better
race. Oh yeah, and this year the minimum possible distance will be
somewhere approching four thousand kilometres and the
checkpoints are positioned so that you have to go through some bumpy
bits. Did I mention the party at the end?
And suddenly it is all awfully close. The race will start on July
28th, 2017. I’ve got an entry, got a bike, got a whole lot of
gear, now I just need to figure out how to fit it all together, get
myself to Belgium on time, and start pedalling!
Once the race begins you will be able to follow all of the action
through the race website, where you can see each rider's progress
(through the magic of satellite trackers) and come to this blog for
specific updates about me (although they may be short, or possibly
written by someone else - I will be racing) and hopefully a few
pictures and maybe the odd video!
Meanwhile, the rest of my site is now pretty out of date, sorry
that. In the
mean time if you are looking to pass some time then please
imagine that it is 2013,
then the rest of this site will all seem current!
If you look below you can find links to a few older blogs that I have
kept. I moved the site to a new host a while ago and simply haven't had
polish it. This means that some areas look more than a little rough,
and a few of
the links may not work, sorry.
If you want to read more, I also rode the Tour de France
in 2009 and the Vuelta Ciclista a Espana in 2012, plus a few other
little adventures. Unfortunately most of the older
has not quite made it here yet. I am still hoping to bring it
over but time is running short before I leave for the Giro, and
in the mean time you can still see the old version of the site
There are also links direct to the blogs for the Tour de
France and the Vuelta under the appropriate images.