Trans-Provence Day 3 & 4
After a mildly moist (!) day two, the Mavic Trans-Provence continues along it what looks to be its terribly trick route to the pub in Monaco. Day 3 presser…
The approach to stage one today see’s competitors become more personally acquainted with their bikes .Yes, It’s the first major carry of the Mavic® Trans – Provence. A 500 metre carry or push depending upon your persuasion leads you to a col in the mountains and the first Special Stage of the day.
An equally fierce descent balances out the climb to the summit and fires the riders on to the valley floor and a longer liaison stage than in previous year, with a long road climb to the feed station.
It’s very easy to overuse the word brutal when writing a Mavic® Trans-Provence press release, but it’s near enough unanimous as far as we can tell – 9 out of 10 riders that had enough lung capacity to answer simple questions at the top of a hill reckon the climb to todays Special Stage 2 is brutal !
However – the whooping and shouting at the bottom of the new Special Stage seems to suggest that the all the hard work uphill was well worthwhile.
Another long road section followed by the last fire road climb of the day leads as always to todays the final Special Stage . Fast traversing singletrack with plenty of exposure across desert like hillside drops riders into a wooded valley bottom and a final flat out pedal across undulating (some of it very steeply undulating) singletrack .
No changes in positon for the top riders today but there’s plenty more riding and racing ahead.
Day 3 video from the Trans-Provence
So Nicolas Lau extends his lead over Jerome Clementz to 1minute 4 seconds heading into Day 4. Day 4 you say? Heres the press release…
Last of the baguette brew
Wednesdayʼs ride through the Maritime Alps was a short one, relatively speaking. A touch under 30km long, 2354 metres of descending and a total accumulated baguette consumption of 135 metres.
Each day 120 baguettes are fresh baked and delivered to the campsite kitchen, opened up into hearty sandwiches and sliced for evening dipping. We have estimated that each rider eats at least a length of baguette each day. The loafage is just part of what keeps the Trans-Provence riders and staff going. Today there was also the 20 kilogram of beef, 10 litres of dark beer (donʼt judge, it was for the beef and beer stew) and two boxes of wine (the spirit needs fueling too).
The other form of sustenance today was the buffet of trails that we sampled. From wet and wild loamy Ubac to steep and technical Rochers De Bramus and even the lunar landscape of the infamous ʻGrey Earthʼ stage, the riding couldnʼt really be anymore varied than it has been. And this was just one day. With three more to come and Monte Carlo still feeling like a faraway land I feel like we may be distended from trail consumption by then.
Day 4 video from Trans-Provence
Jerome from Nico from Nicolas. Amazingly with the time gaps Jerome Clementz takes the lead from Nicolas Lau to lead Nicolas Vouilloz by 1minute 18seconds. There’s still three days left to race before the finish at Monaco. Last year there was less than a minute between Nico and Jerome so its still all to play for. As we’ve seen its more than possible to make up the time.