Following the Tour (From the Drive).

Due to a clerical oversight which has blocked the participation of Team Sudocreme4SagaSprinters from the upcoming Tour de France, The Wattmeister has been forced to make alternative arrangements for the next three weeks.

The trusty Wattvan has been coaxed back into action, its fridge now stocked with an infinite supply of rillettes and tinned duck cassoulet. The small two burner gas hob will take care of culinary matters and there is electricity for the 52 inch TV (which should just fit on the front swivel passenger seat) in order to follow every pedal stroke of the action on either Channel 4, or Eurosport.

Hygiene is well catered for. A tank of water which holds 80 litres should suffice for the three week odyssey (if he brushes his teeth every other day), and the sink can (and has) doubled up as a toilet.

There is abundant storage space for clothing. Naturally, The Wattmeister will need a pair of clean bibshorts every day (especially with the aforementioned arrangements) and as the laundry facilities are limited, it will be necessary to pack extra green, polka dot and yellow jerseys.

The route  looks incredibly tough with 9 mountain stages, 9 flat stages, (of which 4 are as hilly as the Dolomites), 2 hilly Time Trial stages, and 1 stage which is described as ‘hilly’….hahaha, Prudhomme is having a laff!

The Wattmeister’s contact in TEAM SKY reports that Chris Froome is very confident and has lost weight to the point of being invisible. However, Nairo Quintana has always looked stronger in the final week of a three week stage race, and is expected to heap more anguish on the fragile British psyche. There are plenty of other contenders though, including Contador, Porte, Pinot, Aru, Nibali and Bardet.

With the Massif Central on stage 5, and the Pyrenees making an early appearance on stage 7, we will not have to wait long to witness some action from the main GC contenders.

Spare a thought for The Wattmeister and The Wattmutt as they spend the duration of the Tour on the drive outside Wattmeister Towers cooped up in the van in order to get an authentic experience. Please feel free to tap on the window and say hello if passing. Bring food parcels if it makes you feel better, but not while they are climbing Mont Ventoux.

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