Dinan to Lisieux
Today’s route traveled the old roads of Normandy. In the spring of 1944 tens of thousands of troops clogged these roads escaping from the beaches and around the lopsided grid of hedgerows dividing the Norman farmscape. Today’s Rouleurs, many recovering from yesterday’s crashes, pay homage to old days and old men who witnessed their own youth disappear in a matter of minutes.
The rainy day worked to perfection for Edvald Boasson Hagen from Team Sky. Born in the olympic hills of Lillehammer, the rainy and windy conditions played to his strengths. The Heroes cannot remember a tour where the All Rounder’s daily presence trumped the well-groomed sprint trains who typically dominate the first week of the grand tours.
Radio Shack troubles mount as another member of their deep GC squad is laid out on the tarmac; Leipheimer, four kilometers from the finish, used a guard rail to massage his ribs. Their GC asset of having four riders to always watch is diminished with his added time and more importantly yesterday’s loss of the youthful Janez Brajkovič.