Beautiful day in Montréal for a race. While it didn't pack the same action as Québec, it is always fun to be on the side of the road and see cyclists go past you 17 times. With some family and friends, I spent a great day near Mont-Royal.
As usual, it started with the signing ceremony. Cofidis went first, soon followed by SpiderTech, to the pleasure of the crowd.
Most teams had at least one rider who was interviewed on stage, including Vacansoleil. And yes, they presented Hoogerland as "the rider who fell in barb wire". Guess that will follow him for a long time (he does have nasty scars)
Liquigas with Sagan and Duggan
Even in Montréal, there are Euskie fans (with the wrong jersey)
Orica GreenEdge. I learned from Seahorse that Gerrans speaks French and as a matter of fact he was interviewed; he's pretty good.
Sky with the eventual winner Nordhaug. Michael Barry gave a long interview as his career will soon end.
Garmin got a huge cheer, especially Giro winner Hesjedal
David Veilleux, Thomas Voeckler and Europcar too. I get the feeling they are the crowd's favorite team, even ahead of SpiderTech
And that ended the signature ceremony. I've got picture of all teams, so if you want one, I'll post it in the comments. Some picture are lower quality though, I had some camera concerns.
Before the start, I went at the back of the start area, seeing the last preparations of the riders. Managed to say hello to Fédrigo, to cheer for Ted King and to see François Parisien having a chat with some friends.
This one is for Albertina. Azanza and ??
Leukemans and ??? in the Vacansoleil car
Polish champion Golas
For Albertina, part II. Nieve and ???
David Veilleux says hi. When he attacked in the last lap, the crowd went crazy.
Then the race started. The break formed more quickly than in Québec, so the peloton took it easy in the early laps. Wegmann, Bennett, Kangert and Ghyselinck (plus a mystery Rabobank rider) in the peloton.
The peloton in the last corner before the finish line climb (not so flat... 4% up to the line)
Vandborg and Sanchez
The peloton on Avenue du Parc
Former Slovak champion Martin Velits on Camilien-Houde climb
The peloton on Camilien-Houde
iamnottedking... but he is
Vorganov and (I think) Charteau in the later part of the race
I want one of those. I don't care which one in particular, I just want one.
Movistar spent a lot of time in the front of the peloton
I was quite surprised by the number of Ted King fans in Québec
Not sure he noticed the chalkwork that late in the race
Crowd favorite Voeckler doing his best Voeckler look
Might as well see the break before they are gone (Martinez, Gauthier and Boaro, and they always seemed to be in that order, Boaro being a just a little behind)
Katusha was working hard to close the gap (and it paid for Kolobnev)
Repairs coming for Gorka Izagirre
Boivin doing the work for Parisien at the bottom of Camilien-Houde (I didn't target Parisien in particular for photos today... but it seems I got him quite a lot)
Lap 16 of 17. Peloton together but lacking organization near the start finish line
After that we got closer to the start finish line and a little away from the road (we got a little higher to see better). I took very few photos, prefering to watch the race and the few photos I took didn't come out very well, some camera concerns afain. It was a great finish with Moser, Nordhaug and Kolobnev fighting for the top spot while the favorites were caught behind.
After the race, I passed near the team cars and saw Selvaggi packing
Today's results: Two Grand Prix bells (all I need now are two cows), a SpiderTech cap and a Rabobank bottle
As usual it was fun meeting people from PdC. Hope many of you will come next year... Montréal and Québec are great races, and great places.
(all pictures by me)