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Hot d’Huez

Posted by Jeremy Schultz on July 24, 2007

A year ago today, I was climbing Alpe d’Huez. It was unbelievably hot. In all my years of cycling in Arizona, including the legendary Wednesday night Tortilla Flats series, I’ve never been that hot on the bike. The bottom of the climb was pretty difficult, but the hardest part of the ordeal was navigating the other traffic going up the mountain: team cars/buses(!), fan cars, motorcycles, and a blinding array of cyclists. There were folks like me, attempting to look PRO, all the way down to folks in cut-offs on mountain bikes chugging along at 3 or 4 MPH. I made my way almost to the top (the gendarmes wouldn’t allow riders to go all the way by the time I got there), and hoped to descend to Le Bourg-d’Oisans to watch the race. When I reached approximately the 3K from the top sign, a gendarme pulled me off the road. So here I stay! Luckily for me, it turned out to be a great place to stand (I’ll be uploading more pics soon), and there was a food/drink tent set up a few steps away. Further, I met a couple from England who were staying in their son’s apartment atop Alpe for the week. What a place to stay!

I’ve got more to say, but for now I’ll say it was cycling bliss. Much unlike today, when one of my all-time favorite riders has tested positive for blood doping. Say it ain’t so, VINO! I’m at such a loss over this, I just don’t know what to say. More big cheers for the clean riders out there is all I can muster.

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