The Tour is finally over, but what a Tour it was. From Cavendish's blazing sprints to Sastre's blistering attack on the Alpe it was a great race. I wrapped it all up yesterday so today, while the peloton celebrates its arrival in Paris I though I would post up some photos of the l'Alpe d'Huez as it typifies all that is the Tour. From rapid fans to suffering riders the Alpe has it all.
It is great to see US fans on the Alpe. They clearly know their riders and want to show their support.
Each turn on the Alpe is numbered and also has the elevation. The winners on the Alpe have their name on one of the signs as well beginning with the first victory by Fausto Coppi in 1952 who adorns the first turn at the bottom(turn 21) along with Lance Armstrong who in 2001 was the 22nd rider to win on the Alpe.
Andy Hampsten was the first American to win on the Alpe in 1992. His name is on the sign for turn number 5 which is five turns from the summit. The press room had a number of banners celebrating the victories on the Alpe and this one was particularly special.
'Dutch corner' is turn 7 and is always a huge party. Every rider gets encouragement, but at this particular moment, the Nederlanders are performing some sort of sing along with folding chairs in the mix for effect.
These three guys are paying homage to the three main jerseys of the Tour in their own special way.
Cadel Evans had lots of Australian fans on the Alpe. Some rode up the climb with inflatable kangaroos on their back.