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TdF 2006 - Stage 17

21 Jul 2006

It is Floyd Landis, the strongest man in this edition of the Tour de France.

In solitary breakaway for more than 100km, 4h of effort, with 4 climbs totalling 3000m of climbing and several kms of flat course, he was then able to climb the final ascent at 1637 m/h (average gradient 8.5%).

"Landis a cracké" was the main title of l' Equipe. Today Floyd responded with a feat that we hadn't seen in quite many years.
Revaluating yesterday's crisis with today's performance, I guess it was more likely a hyperthermal crisis rather than energetic breakdown.
It is in fact very unlikely to regenerate totally empty glycogen stores in just 24 hours, while with a hyperthermal crisis it is possible a much faster recovery.
Today we've seen Flyod continually pour water on his body so to cool down the temperature.

A hyperthermal crisis can be really dangerous, as it happened to Simpson on the Mont Ventoux many years ago.
UCI rules forbid the riders to wear shirts without sleeves, when this could favor a better thermal dispersion in extreme situations like during the last couple of stage of this Tour de France (35° C).
Perhaps it would be proper to reconsider such impositon... 

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