Lance Armstrong could not best his younger teammate, Alberto Contador, on Friday and fell behind him into third place, in the standings of this year’s Tour de France.  The race will have two more days in the Pyrenees this weekend and then next week brings the Alps, so there is still a lot more Tour de France racing yet to go.  But after today though, it is clear that unlike Lance’s last few Tour victories, he will certainly not be cruising to an easy victory, if victory at all.

Later this summer Anne and I will be heading to Quebec, the French speaking part of Canada, on a bicycling tour.  In preparation for this trip, Anne checked out some audio CDs, that teach French.  Our hope was that since we both had taken French in high school, a little refresh might be in order.  So class, today’s French word for the day is bordure.  A bordure is called an echelon in English.  It is one of the nightmares of the peleton (another French word).  When the wind is strong and blowing from the side, it can split the big bunch of riders, the peleton, into little groups, which are no longer sheltered inside the collective bunch.  They lose contact, find themselves exposed, some riders on the most exposed side of the road, can drop considerable time.

The State of Missouri’s Tour of Missouri, a late summer professional bike race, is in danger of being canceled.  This is due to the state’s budget concerns.  Governor Nixon (D) has threaten to stop funding for the race.  The Tour of Missouri just happens to be the pet project of Lt. Governor Kinder (R), so there is probably some politics involved in this decision.  Personally, I would like to see the Tour of Missouri go forward this year. 

The picture with this post is of a sunflower.  In France the sunflower is the symbol of the Tour.  This sunflower is from the Park.

In other news, July is National Blog Posting Month or NaBloPoMo.  People who have a blog should try to post once per day in July, or at least once in July.  Speaking of blogs, Slate had an article about crowd-sourced, single-topic blogs.  Nook’s blog has a link to one of these blogs, that Anne is fast becoming addicted to, I Can Has Cheez Burger.  I think that I would get bored if I always had to post on the same subject.  Although, it does seem to be an easy business model to exercise for Internet success.

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