Anyone who knows anything about the Tour de France recognises that this climb is one that ignites the passions of the fans perhaps more than any other. It is the site of the first mountain top finish of the race and it is destined to have a significant impact on the race.
As early as the Grand Départ in Corsica riders were talking about trying to ensure that they had energy to spare for stage 18. The contest begins early with another trip up the col de Manse (as used at the end of stage 16) before the journey to Isère were riders will be either climbing or descending. We've seen enough of Alberto Contador's antics already to know that he has not yet conceded defeat to Chris Froome and now that the Spaniard is up to second overall, with his team-mate Roman Kreuziger in third, he's going to be more inspired than ever.
Froome is such a boss right now.
Interesting to see Evans just cruise round - did he lose time on purpose to perhaps go for a stage win, or did I miss something?
Today will be amazing. Rain forecasted, and the descent down the back of Alpe d'Huez was pretty hairy last time I did it, I'm really hoping they've resurfaced - there were ditches.
Froome, Quintana, Contador? All seem to have a chance to win it, up until the final few k when Froome puts it in the bag.. But maybe a break will get away.
A few useful links
Everything stays the same, Ro5ey's Roulers by andy rose at the top in the fantasy league, Time to do some crashing at the bottom in the loser league.
http://www.cyclingnews.com/news/rolland-gives-up-on-the-tour-de-france-polka-dot-jersey - going to try his hand at sucking at something else now...
http://www.cyclingnews.com/news/peraud-crashes-out-of-the-tour-de-france - sometimes it's just not your day, did look nasty
http://www.cyclingnews.com/news/tour-de-france-shorts-fuglsangs-wrong-turn-more-from-meyer - feeling quite sorry for Pinot, hope he bounces back
http://www.cyclingnews.com/blogs/robert-millar/the-anatomy-of-the-chase - insights from Robert Millar again