TV Show: Stage 20 of the 2009 Tour De France
Air Date: Saturday, July 25, 2009
Network: Versus (Live Coverage)
Announcers: Phil Liggett & Paul Sherwen
Files: Pre-Race Show - AVI XviD (452MBs) Part 1 - AVI XviD (1.03GBs) Part 2 - AVI XviD (1.27GBs)
SPECIAL NOTE: To get updates from me on the capturing, editing, and compression process of the torrents, you can get more information by visiting a Twitter page I created at [url]http://twitter.com/TourTorrents[/url]. I've never used Twitter before, so I'll be learning as I go. I created this so that you will all have a good idea on when to expect the torrents in the coming weeks.
TORRENT NOTE: This video has been edited with no commercials and covers the entire race live, no highlights. Part 1 & Part 2 are separate files so that you can download Part 1 first to watch the race while you are downloading Part 2. All coverage is live and none of the race was removed during the commercial removal process. Enjoy.
STAGE 20 DETAILS:
Type: High Mountains
Date: Saturday, July 25, 2009
Weather Sunny & Windy
Start And Finish: Montélimar > Mont Ventoux
Distance: 167 km (103.76 Miles)
Stage Profile: Without a doubt this is the grandest stage of this year’s Tour de France. Mt Ventoux has been a part of the Tour 13 times but never in such a decisive manner. It’s also never had a mountain top finish so close to the end of the race. It will be the end all, take all, for whoever can conquer this mountain first.
The start in Montelimar will be familiar to Jens Voigt who won the finish here in 2006. This stage with its undulating 167km will be far tougher than any stage 20 the Tour has presented before. The early kilometers will be tense as the teams try to set up their strategy and tactics to give their leaders the best chance to succeed on the final climb.
Lance Armstrong has never won the Ventoux; losing to Marco Pantani in 2000 and to Richard Virenque in 2002. In 2000 Armstrong broke away with Pantani in the final kilometers of the climb but at the end Armstrong let Pantani take the win. One of the greatest climbers of his time, Marco Pantani did not take kind to the idea that Armstrong “let him win”. The result was a bitter rivalry between the two. In 2002 Armstrong broke free from the main group in hot pursuit of Virenque but the climbing ability of Virenque, who had over a minute lead in the closing kilometers, proved too much for Armstrong to take back.
Mt. Ventoux includes winners such as Eddy Merckx, Poulidor, Thevenet, Gaul, and a 1987 time trial when Jeff Francoise Bernard beat the so called “favorites” of Stephen Roche and Pedro Delgado. The climb for the Tour uses the south approach which starts in Bedoin. It reaches a height of 1,909m over the 19.7km. The bottom part is the steepest but after racing all day the barren open top section will hurt just as much. There are three routes possible to ascend Mont Ventoux. There is the south route from Bedoin, the hardest, which the Tour takes, the east route from Sault, and the north route from Malucene. The north route was used in 1994 as a descent when the Tour went over Mt. Ventoux to finish in Carpentras when Eros Poli won.
The climb has brought glory to many but it also has brought tragedy. In 1967 Mont Ventoux was the place for Tom Simpson’s collapse and death on the slopes leading up to the top. Simpson was the first British rider to wear the yellow jersey of the Tour in 1962 and finished 6th overall. In 1965 he became the World Road Champion and he was one of the strongest of the strongest cyclists. In 1967, the Tour riders endured a brutally hot day up Mont Ventoux, and a deadly mixture of methylamphteamine, banned by the Tour, and dehydration led to Simpson’s death. Situated only a couple kilometers from the top of the climb there is a granite memorial near the spot where Tom Simpson passed away.
At the end of the day the rider that has yellow will be the Tour winner as only the traditional last day in Paris remains. The history books will add a page to their archives as each rider hopes to become a part of the glory and mystique that surrounds the Mont Ventoux.