Guess what whizzed by our flat today? The Volta ao Algarve (Tour of Algarve)! We literally walked out our front door and down the block to see it. As always, the entire peloton was past us in about about three seconds. We were standing atop a short (very short) hill, but it didn’t seem to slow them down much.
Okay, I exaggerate — it actually took them seventeen seconds to go past. I know this because my first shot of the leaders was taken at 12:18:01 and my final shot was taken at 12:18:18. By contrast, the various team cars required exactly twice as long to move past — 34 seconds. Amazing.
We were hoping to see Rui Costa, Portugal’s pride and joy and this year’s world champion, who is currently in third place on the Volta (thirteen seconds behind that dastardly Spaniard, Alberto Contador). Since I was behind the camera, I saw nothing. Looking at my photos afterwards was the first clue as to which teams I managed to capture, let alone individual riders. My wife, who was watching from the other side of the street and had no distractions to hinder her, fared no better. She reported the passing of the peloton as “a blur.”
I guess next year we’re going to have to bite the bullet and make a day out of it, driving up to the summit of Malhão to see the queen’s stage that is used every year. It’s a long and extremely steep switchbacked slog to the top, which is the only way we could actually detect (and photograph) individual riders.
In the meantime, I’m thinking this is the person with the best view of the Volta:
Go, GNR, go!