Yet Another Cycling Forum

General Category => Freewheeling => Racing => Topic started by: jane on October 30, 2013, 09:47:33 am

Title: Women's Tour
Post by: jane on October 30, 2013, 09:47:33 am
http://road.cc/content/news/97864-details-released-opening-two-stages-next-mays-womens-tour (http://road.cc/content/news/97864-details-released-opening-two-stages-next-mays-womens-tour)
I am putting together a plan which involves a tent, a bike and looking for campsites from which I can ride to a good view of this.... and then perhaps following it to the last three stages too.  A plan which I might replicate in Yorkshire a few weeks later.
Title: Re: Women's Tour
Post by: mrcharly-YHT on October 30, 2013, 10:59:34 am
Very flat course . . .  going to be a chaingang fest. Will suit an Belgian cyclists "The winds are our mountains."
Title: Re: Women's Tour
Post by: Cudzoziemiec on October 30, 2013, 02:39:27 pm
Hinckley to Bedford stage - well, I've got a friend who used to live in Hinckley... and then moved to Bedford... but now lives near Colchester.  :-\

Very flat course . . .  going to be a chaingang fest. Will suit an Belgian cyclists "The winds are our mountains."
I thought that was the Danes? The Belgians have the Ardennes. Right though!
Title: Re: Women's Tour
Post by: Pickled Onion on April 24, 2014, 01:33:22 pm
There seems to be very little interest in this inaugural event, less than two weeks off? Or is there another thread I've missed?
Title: Re: Women's Tour
Post by: TimC on April 24, 2014, 01:56:00 pm
I shall be out to watch the finish in Bury, I hope. I haven't seen the detailed route, though. It will be televised on ITV4 too, and I'll be watching that. It's a shame that the whole thing is so flat, but I hope it will go on to greater things.
Title: Re: Women's Tour
Post by: gibbo on April 24, 2014, 03:13:36 pm
It's coming through my home town of Hadleigh then loops away and comes back through a village that's about 5 miles away so I intend to watch it twice but only if I can race across in time.
Title: Re: Women's Tour
Post by: Cudzoziemiec on May 07, 2014, 04:07:38 pm
Stage One to
(click to show/hide)

(spoilered to allow others to watch the highlights MattC can't  ;))
Title: Re: Women's Tour
Post by: mcshroom on May 07, 2014, 04:19:30 pm
Just a reminder that ITV4 highlights are on 9-10pm tonight :)
Title: Re: Women's Tour
Post by: RichMoss on May 07, 2014, 04:20:41 pm
...and repeated at 8 am tomorrow ( I was about to post the same as mcshroom).
Title: Re: Women's Tour
Post by: TimC on May 07, 2014, 05:11:44 pm
Also on Eurosport at 10 tonight.
Title: Re: Women's Tour
Post by: mattc on May 07, 2014, 05:33:39 pm
Just a reminder that ITV4 highlights are on 9-10pm tonight :)
Not sure I've got time ...

Stage One to
(click to show/hide)
.
Hoorah, thanks!

Title: Re: Women's Tour
Post by: Cudzoziemiec on May 07, 2014, 06:41:12 pm
Sorry.  :-[
Title: Re: Women's Tour
Post by: jane on May 07, 2014, 07:03:58 pm
My plan delineated in the OP was scuppered by family stuff...so I'll be watching the highlights on ITV4.
Title: Re: Women's Tour
Post by: Andrew Br on May 07, 2014, 10:05:50 pm
Exciting racing !
If the weather scuppers the pub ride tomorrow, I know what I'll be doing in the evening.



Title: Re: Women's Tour
Post by: Ruth on May 08, 2014, 10:04:03 pm
It was a good day's riding today, I was too knackered to go out after work and actually I'm glad 'cause I saw this.
Title: Re: Women's Tour
Post by: mcshroom on May 08, 2014, 10:59:57 pm
Hmm, ITV don't seem to put it on their player until after the morning repeat :(
Title: Re: Women's Tour
Post by: Ruth on May 09, 2014, 09:07:26 pm
Ratto and Vos are both amazing to watch on the telly.  Seeing those beautiful English verges and hedgerows full of white flowers is making me homesick for bike riding! 

What's with the 'they're not trying in the sprint 'cos they're not out of the saddle' shite?  Let's see you match them mile for mile Ned m'boy!

I wish there were be-suited, handsome, hunky, deferential podium boys to kiss their cheeks and give them flowers at the end.  I'd have enjoyed that.
Title: Re: Women's Tour
Post by: Ruth on May 09, 2014, 09:41:25 pm
The Wiggle team strip is actually really distinctive and striking, definitely one of the nicest.

It'd be great to see Rebecca Laws take the overall QOM.
Title: Re: Women's Tour
Post by: Tewdric on May 09, 2014, 09:49:41 pm
I watched the coverage until a few minutes ago.

Same old story - slow, disorganised and dull.

It wasn't holding my attention so I switched off.
Title: Re: Women's Tour
Post by: Dibdib on May 09, 2014, 09:51:53 pm
The Wiggle team strip is actually really distinctive and striking, definitely one of the nicest.

Agreed, although I really like the Lululemon kit too. Too bonkers for me to actually wear, but very awesome all the same.
Title: Re: Women's Tour
Post by: Ruth on May 09, 2014, 10:08:20 pm
I was just thinking how much I liked the Lululemon kit.  Really nice.

Great finish to today's race!
I watched the coverage until a few minutes ago.

Same old story - slow, disorganised and dull.

It wasn't holding my attention so I switched off.

It will never be the same as the men's racing, but that's not necessarily a bad thing.  It's not worse, it's just different.

And they were all racing right up to the line today.  I loved it.
Title: Re: Women's Tour
Post by: Tewdric on May 09, 2014, 10:15:06 pm
Sorry that came across as really negative but I was, at least, trying to be honest. 

It's great to see women's racing getting more exposure and, in time, I'm sure this will lead it a more competitive environment and, from that, a more exciting spectacle. 
Title: Re: Women's Tour
Post by: Veloman on May 09, 2014, 10:16:03 pm
I watched the coverage until a few minutes ago.

Same old story - slow, disorganised and dull.

It wasn't holding my attention so I switched off.

Slow?

I think the pace was high, especially considering the wind, and the plan was for a bunch sprint by the main contenders.

IMO, no more boring than a sprint stage in the TDF where they allow a break to go only to get caught when they decide it's time to close the gap!
Title: Re: Women's Tour
Post by: TimC on May 09, 2014, 10:33:13 pm
The average speed for today's stage was about 42kmh. That's pretty quick, by my reckoning. And the attacking, aggressive style of racing I find very entertaining - and probably inevitable in an essentially flat parcours with stage lengths of around 100k (as limited by the UCI).
Title: Re: Women's Tour
Post by: Ruth on May 09, 2014, 10:45:55 pm
(snip) ... an essentially flat parcours with stage lengths of around 100k (as limited by the UCI).

Yeah, what is with that?  This lot are capable of so much more than that.  The highlights are almost as long as teh entire stage, ffs!
Title: Re: Women's Tour
Post by: TimC on May 09, 2014, 11:58:19 pm
(snip) ... an essentially flat parcours with stage lengths of around 100k (as limited by the UCI).

Yeah, what is with that?  This lot are capable of so much more than that.  The highlights are almost as long as teh entire stage, ffs!

Of course they are capable of far more, but I guess when the UCI instigated that particular gem they probably thought they were protecting the poor little flowers!
Title: Re: Women's Tour
Post by: Pickled Onion on May 10, 2014, 12:40:06 am
I was just thinking how much I liked the Lululemon kit.  Really nice.

Great finish to today's race!
I watched the coverage until a few minutes ago.

Same old story - slow, disorganised and dull.

It wasn't holding my attention so I switched off.

It will never be the same as the men's racing, but that's not necessarily a bad thing.  It's not worse, it's just different.

And they were all racing right up to the line today.  I loved it.

I found it good to watch but, sadly, it's been virtually ignored in the press and barely promoted. I live in Oundle and it was all a bit "El Baño del Papa", and much the same watching the TV coverage: "Oh! And see the crowds out to cheer them on!!" when there were a couple of people standing on the verge. It is such a shame.
Title: Re: Women's Tour
Post by: TimC on May 10, 2014, 01:27:04 am
Hmm. ITV4 and Eurosport are running daily highlights programmes, The Guardian seems to be giving it plenty of coverage, and it's pretty big news around here (Sudbury). And the crowds I've seen on TV are pretty impressive for weekday morning racing. I'm sure it could have been given more, but they didn't have a title sponsor until a month ago. I think this race will go from strength to strength - the riders certainly seem impressed.
Title: Re: Women's Tour
Post by: Karla on May 10, 2014, 10:36:03 am
The ITV4 highlights at 9 are certainly better than watching the TdF a few years ago at 11pm or whatever it was, with sex adverts in the breaks.
Title: Re: Women's Tour
Post by: Phil W on May 10, 2014, 05:12:08 pm
I was out watching it today , cycling between the Qom and finish. Loads of people watching, and I can tell you, they were moving. Not fast? Pah
Title: Re: Women's Tour
Post by: Snakehips on May 10, 2014, 05:54:43 pm
Not fast? Pah
I thought the poster who said it was slow was referring to the coverage rather than the speed of the riders. Their average speed seems to be greater that I can even manage on the flat.
Title: Re: Women's Tour
Post by: Phil W on May 10, 2014, 05:56:00 pm
The speed they came up the Qom hill defies belief , yep I'd be happy doing doing that downhill with a following wind never mind up
Title: Re: Women's Tour
Post by: mike on May 10, 2014, 06:09:00 pm
they came within a mile or so of us today, so we went to watch them - they bloody flew past!  (uphill, into the wind)

loads of others cheering on our corner in the middle of nowhere, 20 or 30 police bikes, loads of support cars, was great to see it.
Title: Re: Women's Tour
Post by: TimC on May 10, 2014, 06:26:05 pm
Not fast? Pah
I thought the poster who said it was slow was referring to the coverage rather than the speed of the riders. Their average speed seems to be greater that I can even manage on the flat.

Faster than the average for the men's Giro d'Italia stage today!
Title: Re: Women's Tour
Post by: Pedal Castro on May 11, 2014, 09:13:10 am

I found it good to watch but, sadly, it's been virtually ignored in the press and barely promoted. I live in Oundle and it was all a bit "El Baño del Papa", and much the same watching the TV coverage: "Oh! And see the crowds out to cheer them on!!" when there were a couple of people standing on the verge. It is such a shame.

Do you, do we know each other then? I did suspect this after your new LBS rides comment last week.

Back on topic, I have been enjoying the Women's Tour. Oundle really gave them a good send off. As I rode home through town on Tuesday evening I had to weave through a kids cycle obstacle course, a BMX stunt display, and loads of stalls - a real party atmosphere. I then just had to do a slight detour into the market place at 6am the next morning the cross the start line before riding to work in Northampton, only did the first 10 miles of the actual race route though.
Title: Re: Women's Tour
Post by: Pickled Onion on May 11, 2014, 10:50:28 am
No, I don't think we've met, I set off via the market place shortly after you do, but in the opposite direction. That's a monster commute you have there!

I think I was a bit harsh on the tour upthread, yes it was a good turn out for the start. Hopefully next year it will be in the mainstream news, like the Giro d'Italia was. The trade assoc. had been led to believe it would bring people to the town over a longer period with, eg, TV crews from Tuesday night, the cafés were open from 05:30 but there was hardly a soul about when I went through at 06:15. Everyone turned up shortly before the start and left immediately afterwards, and the town was deserted for the rest of the day as everyone thought the roads were still closed.
Title: Re: Women's Tour
Post by: Jaded on May 11, 2014, 12:15:25 pm
The benefit of events like this to a trader's association will not come during the event. It comes later, in the weeks and months after, when the added (publicity) profile for the town takes effect.

It's a fairly classic mistake that traders and trader's associations make - more people now = more business now. They have to look at why the additional people are in the town. Largely not to come shopping in the town.
Title: Re: Women's Tour
Post by: TimC on May 11, 2014, 01:30:01 pm
I went with my kids into Sudbury to watch the race come through. It was a very good turn-out indeed, more than when the men's ToB came through a few years ago. I think the Police outriders were thoroughly enjoying themselves, waving to the crowds and frightening old ladies and little children with random siren outbursts!! And a lady on a sit-up-and-beg bike who rode up to the market place about 10 minutes ahead of the race got a huge round of applause!
Title: Re: Women's Tour
Post by: Ruth on May 11, 2014, 10:43:36 pm
I just caught up on yesterday's stage.  Excellent bit of telly, plenty of drama  :thumbsup:
Title: Re: Women's Tour
Post by: TimC on May 11, 2014, 11:57:01 pm
Just watched today's highlights. Sadly, we failed to get our fizzogs on the box as they decided Sudbury wasn't photogenic enough. Or maybe I frightened them. But the finish in Bury looked tremendous, and the crowds for the prize-giving were seriously large. Marianne Vos's reaction to the reception she got was quite emotional; there's no doubt that the riders have been surprised and delighted at the enthusiasm that has been displayed by the public - let's hope the sponsors feel they got their money's worth and are keen to repeat the experience.

Tomorrow I might just go and have a go at seeing how pathetic my attempts are at the Strava segments recorded locally by Vos and Dani King!
Title: Re: Women's Tour
Post by: mattc on May 13, 2014, 08:01:13 pm
Rather disappointed by this :(  A couple of main factors:

1) Apalling commentary - predictably - from Mr Porter MBE DipHons KGB. I've moaned before about his failure to ID the riders he's talking about. No change there. But also, in this race it seemed like every other sentence was bigging-up the event itself - rather than actually commenting on the action happening. Let the race speak for itself, you're not a street trader!

2) Every stage came down to a final sprint, with no breakaway standing any chance, or even affecting the outcome in any team-tactics way. I don't know why this is. The only womens road racing I've seen has been 1-day jobs - World Champs, Olympics. They seemed to be very similar to their male equivalents. Then again I've never watched a male race of 5 very short stages.

Any ideas of a cause? The dominance of Vos? The stage profiles? Other 'favourites' off form? (Pooley, Armitstead, Trotters)  ???
Title: Re: Women's Tour
Post by: Ruth on May 13, 2014, 08:12:44 pm
Rather disappointed by this :(  A couple of main factors:

1) Apalling commentary - predictably - from Mr Porter MBE DipHons KGB. I've moaned before about his failure to ID the riders he's talking about. No change there. But also, in this race it seemed like every other sentence was bigging-up the event itself - rather than actually commenting on the action happening. Let the race speak for itself, you're not a street trader!

2) Every stage came down to a final sprint, with no breakaway standing any chance, or even affecting the outcome in any team-tactics way. I don't know why this is. The only womens road racing I've seen has been 1-day jobs - World Champs, Olympics. They seemed to be very similar to their male equivalents. Then again I've never watched a male race of 5 very short stages.

Any ideas of a cause? The dominance of Vos? The stage profiles? Other 'favourites' off form? (Pooley, Armitstead, Trotters)  ???

Five short stages, no real climbs, a fairly evenly-matched top of the field, each day's course designed to end in a sprint.

It's early days for this event and I have been mightily impressed.

And I like Hugh.  It's been riveting, every stage (well, the highlights), and I've loved it.
Title: Re: Women's Tour
Post by: Gareth Rees on May 13, 2014, 08:21:16 pm
Any ideas of a cause?

The stages were not very long: just 94, 120, 90, 88, and 108 km. (Men's races tend to be about twice as long.) There wasn't enough distance or climbing to exhaust the domestiques and leave the team leaders exposed to attacks.
Title: Re: Women's Tour
Post by: JonBuoy on May 13, 2014, 08:47:13 pm
2) Every stage came down to a final sprint, with no breakaway standing any chance, or even affecting the outcome in any team-tactics way. I don't know why this is. The only womens road racing I've seen has been 1-day jobs - World Champs, Olympics. They seemed to be very similar to their male equivalents. Then again I've never watched a male race of 5 very short stages.

What about day2 ?  Ratto was the breakaway, won the stage and took the overall lead !
Title: Re: Women's Tour
Post by: mattc on May 13, 2014, 08:48:19 pm
2) Every stage came down to a final sprint, with no breakaway standing any chance, or even affecting the outcome in any team-tactics way. I don't know why this is. The only womens road racing I've seen has been 1-day jobs - World Champs, Olympics. They seemed to be very similar to their male equivalents. Then again I've never watched a male race of 5 very short stages.

What about day2 ?  Ratto was the breakaway, won the stage and took the overall lead !
I confess I missed that one!  :facepalm:

But anyway, they say the exception proves the rule. (or something)
Title: Re: Women's Tour
Post by: Ruth on May 13, 2014, 09:18:28 pm
There was a (relatively) sustained breakaway of four riders on the final stage, with some real courage from the peloton from several riders who tried to chase them down.
Title: Re: Women's Tour
Post by: Veloman on May 13, 2014, 09:35:34 pm
And don't forget the French rider (Day 2) who was away but we then found out (via Ned) that she had a gear problem and that was why she had to keep getting out the saddle on any gradient.

Basically, all stages were generally flat and no different to the men's race on flat stages that generally results in a bunch sprint won by the strongest sprinter.

Did we have the 'boring' tag when Cav kept winning sprint stages in TDF?  I think not!

Regards Porter, I think he did OK, particularly as he was commentating on the pictures that we were witnessing, which were not brilliant.  Of course he was 'bigging-up' the event as all commentators do.  Could you imagine commentary without emotion?  (In a very bland monotone voice) "And Farah wins his second gold medal" zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz!

Apparently, the organisers were chuffed to bits and are talking about repeating the event next year.  Personally, I would have liked to see a few more hills and perhaps they need to seek the advice of Tomsk as he always seems to find some hills even on his flat events!  Or have a Yorkshire stage.
Title: Re: Women's Tour
Post by: TimC on May 14, 2014, 05:58:30 am
I believe the stages were chosen on the basis of simplicity, and keeping the transits short - and the fact that Suffolk and surrounding counties were prepared to put the race on their roads at pretty short notice. The stage lengths are limited by the UCI - women's stage races must average no more than 100km daily. The combination of geography and that stage length limitation very much dictated the style of racing.

I imagine the success of the race will encourage other areas of UK to bid to host it in future, but it also suspect it will remain a regional race until and unless it can generate the sponsorship and UCI support to extend it (and by that I mean individual stage lengths as well as the number of stages). It would be good to see a TT and some proper hills - on which the women could well embarrass some of their pro male colleagues!
Title: Re: Women's Tour
Post by: mattc on May 14, 2014, 06:50:06 am
Basically, all stages were generally flat and no different to the men's race on flat stages that generally results in a bunch sprint won by the strongest sprinter.

Did we have the 'boring' tag when Cav kept winning sprint stages in TDF?  I think not!
Dunno about you, but I don't get that excited about Cav (or Kittel/Boonen/whoever) winning a flat stage where nothing else happens.
4-5 days of that would NOT make an exciting race for me.




Other comments have pretty much confirmed my impressions - quite a dull race, mainly due to the format/parcours. This 100km limit is pants! Hopefully the organisers can develop the right route to compensate for this next year.
Title: Re: Women's Tour
Post by: Ruth on May 14, 2014, 10:07:55 am
Basically, all stages were generally flat and no different to the men's race on flat stages that generally results in a bunch sprint won by the strongest sprinter.

Did we have the 'boring' tag when Cav kept winning sprint stages in TDF?  I think not!
Dunno about you, but I don't get that excited about Cav (or Kittel/Boonen/whoever) winning a flat stage where nothing else happens.
4-5 days of that would NOT make an exciting race for me.




Other comments have pretty much confirmed my impressions - quite a dull race, mainly due to the format/parcours. This 100km limit is pants! Hopefully the organisers can develop the right route to compensate for this next year.

Would you like can-can dancing and juggling dwarfs as well?
Title: Re: Women's Tour
Post by: mcshroom on May 14, 2014, 10:17:54 am
I actually enjoy watching teams lining up sprinters, and I wouldn't call this ride dull. There were breakaways on most days, one of which succeeded; a good competition for the QoM competition between two riders and some decent sprinting. I think I would like a more hilly stage and a TT stage as part of the ride in future however to showcase some different skills. A 10 mile TT would bring the tour average down so allow more distance on the other days too.

Another change would be to have some larger roads used further out from the finish to allow more team tactics in the peleton as this years' ride did have a few problems with riders stuck at the back of the peleton on narrow roads (so did the men's ToB last year).

My big bugbear though was that in too many places they allowed cars to park on the course, causing a hazard to the riders IMHO. I'd guess that was a police decision rather than a organiser one but hopefully in future years they will be far stricter with where they put the no parking cones.

All in all though I thought it was a good event and well laid on. Just hoping for bigger and better things as the ride matures. :)

Title: Re: Women's Tour
Post by: Thor on May 14, 2014, 10:24:58 am
There was a (relatively) sustained breakaway of four riders on the final stage, with some real courage from the peloton from several riders who tried to chase them down.

There was also a breakaway on Stage 4, which was rather disappointingly shut down by the race organisers, when some obstruction or other ahead of the race necessitated a slowdown.
Title: Re: Women's Tour
Post by: mattc on May 14, 2014, 06:52:13 pm

Would you like can-can dancing and juggling dwarfs as well?
Yes please.

But I'm quite happy without them, thanks.

I just found this race rather dull - I've watched lots of races (mainly mens, but not all), and this wasn't the worst but it was well down there. Is that a permissible opinion? Are you able to tell me which races I've enjoyed, and which not?
Title: Re: Women's Tour
Post by: TimC on May 14, 2014, 10:36:07 pm
I actually enjoy watching teams lining up sprinters, and I wouldn't call this ride dull. There were breakaways on most days, one of which succeeded; a good competition for the QoM competition between two riders and some decent sprinting. I think I would like a more hilly stage and a TT stage as part of the ride in future however to showcase some different skills. A 10 mile TT would bring the tour average down so allow more distance on the other days too.

Another change would be to have some larger roads used further out from the finish to allow more team tactics in the peleton as this years' ride did have a few problems with riders stuck at the back of the peleton on narrow roads (so did the men's ToB last year).

My big bugbear though was that in too many places they allowed cars to park on the course, causing a hazard to the riders IMHO. I'd guess that was a police decision rather than a organiser one but hopefully in future years they will be far stricter with where they put the no parking cones.

All in all though I thought it was a good event and well laid on. Just hoping for bigger and better things as the ride matures. :)



Yes, a TT would definitely help. And you're right about the lanes - the last stage was on my local roads, and I was very surprised at some of the roads they used; some of them are tight for a couple of bikes, never mind 90-odd!
Title: Re: Women's Tour
Post by: David Martin on May 15, 2014, 12:02:17 pm
Part of it is what they can get away with for a rolling road closure.
Title: Re: Women's Tour
Post by: TimC on May 15, 2014, 05:32:10 pm
According to the Comic, the Women's Tour will be in East Anglia again next year and may be six days long - so long as ASO's Yorkshire Criterium International doesn't nick the calendar slot...
Title: Re: Women's Tour
Post by: David Martin on May 15, 2014, 07:14:04 pm
It would be good if the UCI could up the limit for ladies races to allow the development of race tactics.