Thursday, July 19, 2012

Stage 17: Bagnères-de-Luchon to Peyragudes & Domaine Jorel

Loads of points up for grabs

"Short (143.5 km) but tough! We designed a Pyrenean counterpart to the Alpine stage between Albertville and La Toussuire. But now that we are a mere three days from the finish, if the general classification has not been decided yet this will be the last chance for climbers to build a buffer. There will also be loads of points up for grabs for the mountains classification... The course offers no respite. The first climb is the Col de Menté, famous since 1971, which will be followed by the Col des Ares and the Port de Balès. This will be the first time that the finish is decided on the Plateau de Peyragudes, a ski resort in the Hautes-Pyrénées."

First a little about yesterday's stage from twitter:

MarkCavendish Jul 18, 11:05am via Twitter for iPad
Today's stage can be put into perspective by the fact that by the end I didn't care that I was just puking over myself. Hills+Heat=Suffering
And then a reply:
@MarkCavendish We could've been puking on each other and we wouldn't have cared. DZ puked all the way home in the bus. It's just wrong.

Now think about them getting up and doing this again today.

On the road again, there are 153 riders in the race with no one retiring overnight. Jan Ghyselinck was allowed to start even though he finished outside the time limit yesterday.
 Is this our break of the day: Voeckler, Martinez, Peraud, Casar, Valverde, Costa and Kessiakoff? For a moment it looked like Nibali would join them after surging ahead on the downhill, but after a handshake with Valverde, he sat up and waited for the peloton. Why? Well, if Nibali had  stayed in the break, the front group has little chance of staying ahead as Sky would chase.
With 92km to go, the Voeckler group was '50" ahead of the yellow jersey. There was still a second group - with 10 - in between the break and the peloton that includes all the GC specialists.In that gc group, Edvald Boasson Hagen was for once at this stage of the race, not on the front.

Up front, the two groups came together,  1'55" ahead of the peloton, with 68km completed. The lead group: Voeckler, Azanza, Izaguirre, Martinez, Stortoni, Peraud, Kadri, Hoogerland, Casar, Ten Dam, Valverde, Costa, Kessiakoff, Vinokourov, Plaza, Leipheimer and Weening. The break stayed at about that much of a lead for a while, and with 62km to go, the peloton was 2'15" behind the lead group down from the maximum advantage of 3'05." Flashback time: Valverde attacked and quickly had a lead. In between the stage leader and the yellow jersey was Voeckler, Izaguirre and Kessiakoff at 1'25". Valverde reaches the top of the Port de Balès, almost 2½ mins in front of the favorites. Behind, all that was left of the peloton: Nerz, Basso, Nibali, Rogers, EBH, Porte, Froome, Wiggins, Van den Broeck, Menchov, Evans, Trofimov, Cobo, Martin, Vorganov, Taraamae, Kern, Rolland, Pinot, Zubeldia, Horner, Monfort, Scarponi, Brajkovic, Roche, and Vanendert.
Meanwhile, twitter is getting restless:
nyvelocity 7:26am via TweetDeck
Maybe Nibz will attack on the stage to Paris?
mrconde 7:31am via Web
2:34 for Valverde to the favorites. But remember Liquigas keeps on saving Basso...They must have something planned...Let's see.. #TDF12
Well, there were a few efforts, but in the end Sky's Bradley Wiggins and Chris Froome dropped their rivals on the mountain finish to Peyragudes to finish together just 19 seconds behind Valverde.So barring a time trial catastrophe or something unexpected, the final podium looks like Wiggins, Froome and Nibali.
From twitter:
inrng 8:27am via Web
Chapeau to Froome for his loyalty & teamwork, it's too rare. Just look at Radioshack, Zubeldia fell from 5th to 7th today, little support.

Stage: Alejandro Valverde
1 Bradley Wiggins (GBr) Sky Procycling 78:28:02  
2 Christopher Froome (GBr) Sky Procycling 0:02:05  
3 Vincenzo Nibali (Ita) Liquigas-Cannondale 0:02:41  
4 Jurgen Van Den Broeck (Bel) Lotto Belisol Team 0:05:53  
5 Tejay Van Garderen (USA) BMC Racing Team 0:08:30  

Wine: Domaine Jorel Bande de Gypse White 2008 
From Christy at FranklyWines 

From the importer:

Domaine Jorel

Pyrenees-Orientales; Maury
Certified Agriculture Biologique by Qualite France, Manuel Jorel runs this 6 hectare domaine in the Roussillon, producing wines of fascinating local character that reveal new dimensions of flavor, texture, terroir and varietal. Brutally honest and direct, these are flavorful wines with an assertive personality and something important to communicate - namely that this region is capable of producing world-class wines with a unique personality that appeals to open-minded newcomers as well as hyper-critical experts.
Available Wines:
2008 IGP Blanc "Bande de Gypse - from a diverse blend of antique varietals, approximate %'s are: 40% Maccabéo, 30% Grenache Gris, 10% Grenache Blanc, 5% Tourbat, 5% Malvoisie, 5% Carignan Blanc, 5% Muscat d’Alexandria. This white wine is highly aromatic, with notes of lanolin, beeswax, fennel, kaffir lime & jasmine. On the palate there's a plump and juicy presence, with enough acidity to keep things in balance through the long, spice-tinged finish. This wine has real presence, with it's mix of initially rustic yet ultimately elegant flavors, and a texture that is quite refined. Skin contact for 12 hours, vinified and aged for 9 months in old barrels.

From Franklywines:
macabeo/grenache gris/tourbat
This complex white is a blend of macabeu, Grenache gris, Grenache blanc, tourbat, malvoisie, carignan blanc and muscat d’alexandria from the Pyranees-Orientales- an area located in the deepest part of southern France, bordered on the east by the Mediterranean. While rustic, this wine has definite elegance. The name “Bande de Gypse” may call to mind a band of roving gypsies, but it’s not quite so romantic – it makes reference to the band of gypsum rock that runs under the vineyard.

I say: Color somehow had me expecting something slightly off-dry or concentrated, despite Christy's words above. Herbal.  Some more fruit and body as it warmed up but still almost savory.

1 comment:

  1. That's a weird wine. You don't see much of those grapes.
    I've got only 10 miles left to go to ride my "quarter of a TDF" distance.