Last year’s Tour de France Companion had a successful sale of over 50,000 copies. Now comes the second annual, poised as the essential guide for the millions of newer American fans who got swept up in Armstrong’s history-making 2004 ride, and discovered something that much of the sports community already knew: the Tour de France is arguably the world’s greatest sporting event, pushing 150 athletes to the edge of human endurance.
So what will happen in 2005? Can Lance possibly win a seventh? Will Tyler Hamilton avoid a cycling ban? What about the new kids, Thomas Voeckler and Vladimir Karpets? Written for the novice fan but with enough sophistication and insider’s knowledge to be an essential companion for the aficionado, The Tour de France Companion for 2005 is a fully illustrated pocket primer that covers the 2005 route, the teams and their prospects, strategies, ground rules, history, personalities, techniques, and technology. It’s all here: the colored jerseys explained; how teams work together; pulls, lead-outs, the peloton, and breakaways; the curious honor of finishing last. It delves into what it takes to be a racer, how to recover from burning 5,000–9,000 calories a day, and the ever-present issue of drug use. With vital information for 2005, and new sections, including an expanded “Visit the Tour” chapter for the ever-increasing numbers of travelers, and more on bikes and technology.