The summer edition of Cycle Sport, containing the
world’s best Tour de France guide, is now available in the UK. There are 188 pages, packed with superb writing, in-depth knowledge of professional cycling, erudition, wit and the finest cycling photography, all for our usual low price of £4.10.
With the Tour de France looming, and the final warm-up races taking place right now, we’ve interviewed the last two winners. We have an exclusive chat with defending champion and hot favourite Alberto Contador, who informs us that he sees 2010 as his toughest challenge yet. Did he make last year’s win look easy? Think again – Contador tells us exactly where the Schlecks actually had him on the ropes. And for those who think that Contador will win the Tour through dominance in the mountains might be surprised. “I can get more in the time trials than on the climbs,” he says.
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While 2009 and 2007 winner Contador is everybody’s favourite, 2008 winner Carlos Sastre has the opposite problem – nobody, maybe not even the man himself thinks he can win. Sastre tells CS about fighting for respect in the media, and reveals how a total break from cycling reinvigorated his ambition.
It’s been a torrid couple of months for Lance Armstrong with poor form, injuries, and accusations of doping by former team mate Floyd Landis all disrupting his build-up to the Tour. Cycle Sport looks at the allegations, examines the strange history of Armstrong’s financial donation to the UCI, and uncovers the facts behind Armstrong’s “bet” with SCA Promotions. Perhaps the biggest question of all is, will seven-time winner Armstrong even start the 2010 Tour?
We’ve also interviewed Tour de France director Christian Prudhomme, who has designed a series of innovative routes since taking over from Jean-Marie Leblanc. “The big difference between me and Jean-Marie is that he was a pro rider. He was interested in doing what he could for bike riders who were all-rounders. I’m more obsessed with something being able to happen at any point in the race.” Prudhomme tells CS about some of the brainstorming that has happened at ASO: designing a Tour with no high mountains, but many ‘moyenne montagne’ stages; trying to get a Mende-style finish into the first week. “The secret of a good bike race is to keep on changing. Always,” he says.
Who should you support? Click to enlarge and find out
Our world-leading Tour de France guide takes an in-depth look at the greatest bike race in the world. We’ve analysed the strengths and personalities of the Leading Favourites for the yellow and green jerseys – Contador, Armstrong, Wiggins, Schleck, Sastre, Menchov, Evans, Cavendish, Farrar, Boonen and Hushovd. For the yellow jersey favourites, 1988 winner Pedro Delgado adds his expertise and analysis, while for the sprinters, Sean Kelly explains the strengths and weaknesses of each.
We’ve also written a special feature, asking Who’s Going to Win?, analysing the course and comparing the strengths of the 13 biggest favourites for the race. We’ve divided the race up into distinct battlegrounds and identified the tactical crunch points. There’s also a breakdown of where the points for the green jersey will come from, and the climbs which will decide the King of the Mountains classification, plus our unique psychometric flow chart to help you choose who to support, and predictions from a panel of Cycle Sport’s own experts.
Our day-by-day Stage Guide is the most comprehensive available. We’ve got maps, profiles, tactical analysis, stats, interviews with former winners in the stage towns, advice on what to eat, a breakdown of the impact of each stage on the respective jerseys and a spotters’ guide to the day’s likely events. There’s also a comprehensive guide to the 22 who will contest the Tour. We’ve identified the major stars and analysed the strengths and weaknesses of each.
Iconic Places also has a Tour de France theme, visiting the stunning Pyrenean Col d’Aubisque, which features on stage 16, with its subsidiary peak, the Col du Soulor, also appearing on stage 17. The Aubisque is the westernmost of the great Pyrenean climbs, and its landscape and climate show the influence of the maritime weather. We look at the climb, its history and place in cycling lore.
Pro Performance looks at four very different build-ups to the Tour de France, by last year’s top four riders, Alberto Contador, Andy Schleck, Lance Armstrong and Bradley Wiggins. Each has different strengths, weaknesses and attributes which dictate quite different approaches to training. While Contador’s high anaerobic threshold means he has to push extremely hard in training to get benefits (and wears out a lot of team mates), Bradley Wiggins has engineered an extremely steady and scientific build-up. Andy Schleck prefers to train by feel, while Lance Armstrong is hoping to reap the benefits of having two Grand Tours in his legs since his comeback.
Did we say the Tour was the greatest race of all? Take that back, we’ve got a picture feature on the spectacular 2010 Giro d’Italia – probably the most exciting Grand Tour since the 1989 Tour de France. The Giro provided us with day after day of incredible, unpredictable racing, all captured by our photographers at the race. We’ve accompanied the pictures with interviews with some of the main protagonists and heroes.
Plus…all our regular features – Graham Watson showcases his best pictures from that incredible Giro; Broomwagon; Shop Window; a Q&A with the second-most famous Matt Goss in the world; Toto on mechanised bikes; Valverde; Clash of the Month; Top 10 one-hit wonders; how Bradley Wiggins has done the most race days this year of all the top favourites for the Tour; Richie Porte; the Tour of Cali-yawnia (sorry) and much more.
That’s eight in-depth features, plus a comprehensive Tour de France guide, all packed into a massive 188-page issue, for our usual low price of £4.10. Beware of expensive imitations.
Cycle Sport Summer is now on sale in the UK, and will be available later in the US.