The Tour de France & Why Cycling Needs To Be More Welcoming To Women

Jul 11, 2013

Here are some ways to think about the Tour de France. 

When I'm out on my road bike and I head down a very steep hill, it starts to feel pretty damn scary if my speed creeps up over 30 miles an hour. That means I'm zooming down a steep grade and the bike feels right on the verge of being out of control.

Tour de France riders go much faster than that on a flat terrain, generating their own power. Speeds of 35 miles per hour are common. Bursts of 40 are not uncommon. Going downhill, they're up over 50 miles per hour. I get anxious just typing that.

In 1989, Greg Lemond kept up an average speed of 33.8 miles per hour for more than 15 miles. The fastest guy you know averages maybe 18.  Now imagine going that fast inches away from other people going that fast. Imagine crashing.

We'll talk about cycling, the Tour de France and gender parity in a sport that's sorely lacking it on today's show. You can join the conversation. E-mail colin@wnpr.org or tweet us @wnprcolin.