Exergy Tour Dispatch: The Sound of the Finish

Seconds after stage one at the Exergy Tour, women professional bike racers head not to temperature controlled team buses but mini-van bumpers, foldable nylon-chairs, concrete curbs, and ice-coolers. This may be the biggest race on the American calendar for these women but bike racing still encourages humble moments. In this southern Idaho parking lot they re-live the race with their teammates, clear their lungs with asthmatic coughs, console their friends with a hand on their shoulder, and slip off their shoes, gingerly moving their toes. Two minutes go by and they slip out of their wet jerseys and unpin their race numbers. One hundred yards away The announcer is calling Ina-Yoko Tuetenberg’s name and we imagine she is pulling on the leader’s jersey. These events of exhaustion and victory collapse together in the way that is so specific to cycling, so wonderful, we hope we never grow used to it.