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Articles on Tour de France

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It only takes a small error in tactics to lose a sprint, as Mark Cavendish found out in stage 2. Frans de Wit/Flickr

Off the mark: timing is everything in Tour de France sprints

Science shows there's an optimal way to win a sprint finish in the Tour de France, but a tiny error could cost a cyclist the win, as happened to Mark Cavendish in stage 2.

Richie Porte wins in Tour de France

The dust has settled now on the 2014 Tour de France, with Vincenzo Nibali’s well-deserved win, the French resurgence and the other race jerseys and classifications awarded. The 2014 Tour should probably…
Cyclists in the Monash Wind Tunnel are able to measure the effects of their gear on wind resistance. Monash University

The aerodynamics of a Tour de France time trial

As the Tour de France approaches its final days, teams will be looking to place their top riders in the best possible position for the all-important individual time trial in the penultimate stage, where…
It’s tough out there. EPA/Yoan Valat

Explainer: how to win a Tour de France sprint

The final dash to the line in a Tour de France sprint finish may appear to the bystander to be a mess of bodies trying to cram into the width of a road, but there is a high degree of strategy involved…
The race remains world cycling’s crown jewel, despite the doping scandals. EPA/ Kim Ludbrook

Le Tour de France is losing traction in its homeland

July in France means tourists, sunflowers, Bastille Day and the running of the national bicycle race. The Tour is one of the most recognisable symbols of France in the global imagination. But it is an…
Get in line. Riders keeping out of the wind on the road to Sheffield. Adam Bowie

The science behind Tour de France’s hide-and-seek tactics

When the Tour de France comes to town, it’s a chance to get your gladrags on. This year’s Grand Depart in Yorkshire saw Leeds decked out with yellow flowers, bikes placed in coffee bar windows, statues…
There are rules, and then there are ‘rules’ for riders. EPA/Kim Ludbook

Unofficial rules of the Tour de France matter most

Riders in the Tour de France are engaging in a battle of wits as they follow two sets of rules – the official rules and the other set of “unofficial” rules that come with any competitive sporting challenge…
Tut tut: Belgian cyclist Dries Devenyns throws his bottle during the 10th stage of the 2011 Tour de France. EPA/Nicolas Bouvy

The Tour de France – race of beauty or environmental hazard?

It’s that time of year again. The 101st Tour de France begins this Saturday July 5 in the Yorkshire city of Leeds, and three days later it returns to French home soil for Stage 4 (Le Touquet-Paris-Plage…
We love you because you’re a Victorian: Simon Gerrans (centre) celebrates after winning the Liege-Bastogne-Liege cycling race in April. EPA/Nicolas Bouvy

Victorians rule Australian cycling, at the Giro d'Italia and beyond

The annual Giro d'Italia bike race starting tomorrow signifies a peak time on the world professional cycling calendar, with the European Spring Classic races just finished, and the rest of the Grand Tours…
Cyclist Stuart O'Grady’s admission to doping is an important moment in Australian sport. Ben Macmahon/AAP

Dopers like O’Grady should pay, even if they’re good blokes

Recently retired professional cyclist Stuart O’Grady is the latest elite Australian sportsperson to confess publicly to doping during his career. He admitted last week to using the banned blood oxygen…
For perfect pedalling, it’s important to do the rounds. Nicolas Bouvy/EPA

Pedalling technique and the Tour de France – watch and turn

Professional cyclists, such as those riding in this year’s Tour de France, have repeated the same circular pedalling action countless times. But does this mean they’ve developed a more effective pedalling…

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