Velogal's Blog

Tuesday, March 08, 2005

The 63rd Paris-Nice is certainly having its share of troubles with the weather. Today’s Stage 2 had to be shortened from 191km to 46.5km due to snow in the higher climbs of the stage. Not sure about tomorrow’s Stage 3 - it has the first real Cat 1 climb, the Cote de Lavet. Plus higher elevations, so it may have to be revised, too.

The hellish winter weather has played havoc with the Spring races so far. Not sure if it had anything specific to do with the crash-filled Prologue of P-N or not. I think the roads were dry, but it was freezing-arsed cold, so maybe that was a factor. Every rider, except a hardy few, were so layered up that its a wonder they could even move their legs. The Belgian racers, Like Stijn, just go with bare legs - they’re used to riding in crappy weather - just another day in the saddle for them.

One of my photog friends asked me last night what was my favorite non-race shot at the McLane Pacific. There was a Pee Wee race with the cutest kids, and I took a few shots of that. But my favorite shot was of a rather elegant, white-haired lady sitting in a kid’s red Tonka wagon, watching the Saturday crit from a quiet spot on the sidewalk. She had a little pillow for her back and her knees were drawn up, with her feet inside the wagon. Her shoes were neatly placed on the ground beside the red plastic wagon with it’s bright yellow handle.

She sat, serenely and quietly, watching the chaos and swirling colors of the racers flying by. I have a couple of images of her in my smugmug gallery in McL-P Saturday crit gallery. I asked her if she was with one of the racers, but she said no - she lived in Merced and just often walked around the park area - she knew nothing about cycling... And so she sat, silently contemplating the view of a totally different world for her.


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