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Mont Ventoux

It was Thursday, July 13th, 2000 in the afternoon and Marco Pantani glared around. Il Elefantino, The Elephant, had first crossed the finish line atop Mont Ventoux, but he was far from happy. Indeed, it could murder somebody Italian climber with his bald head and protruding ears. Lance Armstrong to be exact. In the twelfth stage of the 87ste Tour de France was Pantani jumped away on the slopes of the mythical mountain. It looked impressive as yellow jersey Armstrong rode up to him moments later and took the cup. Armstrong was stronger and seemed sometimes waiting as Pantani could not keep his rear. It was therefore surprising that Armstrong did not win. In homage to Pantani's return to cycling after a period full malheur the Texan was the clear victory of the rasklimmer, something Armstrong later also admitted. Greater humiliation was unthinkable for Marco Pantani. A champion like he did not give you gifts, especially in the queen stage, and certainly not on top of the Mountain of Mountains.

The Col du Tourmalet is higher, steeper Alpe d'Huez, the Col de la Madeleine longer, but none of those mountains, the attraction of Mont Ventoux, which majestically dominates the flat landscape of the Vaucluse department of Provence. It is the strange lunar landscape at the top, the treacherous rapidly changing weather conditions, and her terrifying past of fear, suffering and tragedy and for individual heroism and triumph. And death. Who says Mont Ventoux, says Tommy Simpson, the Briton in the Tour de France 1967 lost his life on the way up. But in the climbs before and after that fateful day was little or riders did not survive the journey to the summit at 1912 meters. In the fierce heat during a Tour stage in 1955 drove Ferdi Kübler too hard to top. A fellow breakaway warned him: "The Ventoux mountain is not like everyone else." The Swiss Tour winner from 1950 was not listening, drove himself on the head and was so exhausted that he fell and after getting cycled meet the peloton. He drove after that trip on Mont Ventoux no dent in a packet of butter. Jean Malléjac cycled after climbing quite the same ever again. He fell unconscious on the bike and was narrowly saved by the Tour doctor. The great Eddy Merckx had to be ventilated for an hour after his victory in 1970 in an ambulance.

Michael Boogerd Mont Ventoux called a scary thing. "You feel void. Like you're on the moon. The limestone and the Observatoire, the distinctive white tower with the cylinder on the roof, giving the landscape a grim character. "The weather on the 'sugar bread' as the bald mountain with the white of the snow and the limestone on top is referred to, can be erratic, and grim. When Boogerd Mont Ventoux (roughly translated: "windy mountain") in 2000 climbed during the Tour de France was at the foot 35 degrees at the top only 3. And he also knows the stories of canceled quotes by suddenly rising wind where riders with their flat material made to lie on the ground to get rid of it is not. "You never know there."

"Moreover," is above the tree line where the wind has free play. If the climber was dogged by rough weather to take, there begins the toughest part of the climb, the last six kilometers to 8.5% increase. But on normal days is cursing the hardest after the sharp bend near the village of Saint Stephen, during the 10 kilometers through the forest, once described as "a small green light with a black stripe asphalt." Experience expert and author Tim Krabbé still do not know how to find the rhythm in the stifling and oppressive forest, yet still managed to get over him.


Sports Nutrition information

Where you can eat well while climbing Mont Ventoux (from Bedoin)?

  • In the first 2.5 kilometer of the climb.
  • Try to eat as well as possible during the following kilometers. You are constantly at 10% hillspercetage
  • At Chalet Renard. You come here in a parking lot that is almost completely flat.
Tip: Halfway between Chalet Renard and the top is a water point.
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