Friday, February 20, 2009

ToC - Stage 6: Solvang Time Trial - 15 miles

Solvang is a neat Danish knock off town, kind of like Helen, GA.
Frank (in Red) & Andy Schleck (middle) with Jens Voigt (on left) warming up for the TT

Thanks for reading race fans because today is THE day! This is the real "Race of truth", unlike the Prologue. Today is the day that the overall leader should really be crowned. It's not to say that someone couldn't spoil the victor in the following Stages, but it is very unlikely. This is the same course that they have used for the last few years and will be sure not to disappoint the masses.
Since my dad still had to ask, "What do you do for the Tour." I thought I should explain further. As a Course Marshal the ten people in the van get dropped off at strategic points along each course. There are eight vans and we all leap frog to two or three different sections of the course. When we get dropped off, most of the time there is a cop there or other folks to help block the road and make sure the riders know which direction to go. The turns are the most fun because more people show up there because the riders typically have to slow down a bit. I learned that this job is about lessons in human nature. People want to be where ever they are currently NOT. They think they'll get a better spot to take a picture of Lance and bounce around crossing the road numerous times. It gets annoying when the caravan of motorcycles, cars and then riders come through and people still want to cross. It's dangerous and I tried to warn everyone, "Pick a spot and stick it. Put your dog and children on leashes and no one will get hurt. Thank you." Basically, people suck. At least the arrogant, ignorant and just plain stupid seem to be.
Today's one and only drop was actually a cut through road that people would try and get around the other road closures and get back to town. Fortunately I was there to stop them. So it was actually a good spot to be and I was able to do my duty. Oh boy... So the race? Well, I was hoping for Dave Z to pull it off, but Levi beat him by just 8 seconds. There was a tough climb in the middle that really put a hurt on some. Lance doesn't seem to be putting to much extra effort into this race which I know is by design. From Solvang we had a fairly long transfer south and a rather uneventful evening, as I recall now....

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