I'm not a huge biking fan but Lance is simply amazing!

My butt hurts after a couple mile ride, I couldn't imagine going on for 3,608 kilometers (2,242 miles) - that's like riding from Seattle to Chicago in 3 weeks averaging at about 25 mph!

Here's some fun facts regarding the Tour:

  • Calories consumed by a rider per day: 5,900 average, 9,000 max
  • Calories burned by a rider in the course of the Tour: 123,900 (based on 5900-per day average at 21 days of racing)
  • Number of pedal strokes taken per rider for the three weeks: 324,000 (at 60rpm); 486,000 (at 90rpm)
  • Number (or miles) of barricades erected and torn down for the race: 217 miles
  • Number of gendarmes on stage routes: 250 per day
  • Number of chains worn out by a single rider: 3 (Armstrong goes through a chain a week)
  • Total number of tires used by the peloton: 792 (estimate: USPS and Domo both use three sets of wheels on regular race bikes, plus TT wheels)
  • Number of finishers, worst-ever year: 10, 1919 (out of 69 starters)
  • Most stages won by a single rider, career total: 34, Eddy Merckx (1969: six stages and overall; 1970: eight stages and overall; 1971: four stages and overall; 1972: six stages and overall; 1974: eight stages and overall; 1975: two stages)
  • Most number of stages won on single Tour: 8--Charles Pelissier (1930), Eddy Merckx (1970, 1974) and Freddy Maertens (1976)
  • Most riders to wear yellow jersey in one Tour: 8 in 1987
  • Most days spent in yellow jersey: 96--Eddy Merckx (in 7 participations)
  • Biggest winning margin (since 1947): 28 min 27 sec (Fausto Coppi --Stan Ockers in 1952)
  • Smallest winning margin: 8 sec (Greg LeMond --Laurent Fignon in 1989)
  • Longest solo breakaway: 253 km by Albert Bourlon in 1947
  • Biggest winning margin on stage win: 22 min 50 sec --Jose Luis Viejo in 1976
  • Fastest prologue: 55.152 kph--Chris Boardman in 1994 over 7.2km
  • Highest total number of "King of the Mountains" victories: 7 by Richard Virenque
  • Fastest individual time trial: 54.545 kph--Greg LeMond in 1989 over 24.5km
  • Fastest team time trial: 54.930 kp/h by Gewiss in 1995 over 67km
  • Fastest average over a flat stage: 50.355 kp/h--Mario Cipollini in 1999 over 194.5km (Laval-Blois)
  • Fastest average over whole Tour: 40.276 kph by Lance Armstrong in 1999
  • Oldest race winner: Firmin Lambot (36) in 1922
  • Youngest winner: Henri Cornet (20) in 1904
  • Most times participated by one rider: 16--Joop Zoetemelk, between 1970 and 1986 (finished all).
  • One: jaunt into foreign territory (Stage 7 in Karlsruhe, Germany)
  • Two: rest days (July 11 and 18)
  • Three: summit finishes (Courchevel, Ax-3 Domaines, Pla d'Adet in Saint-Lary Soulan)
  • Four: jerseys to win (yellow, green, polka dot, white)
  • Five: classic climbs to hors categorie 'unclassified' summits (Col de la Madeleine, Col de Galibier, Port de Pailheres, Pla d'Adet, Col d'Aubisque)
  • Nine: Riders in each team and number of flat stages
  • 15: million spectators set to line the route
  • 21: stages
  • 22: teams
  • 36: French victories on the Tour since debut in 1903
  • 67.5: kilometers to ride on team time trial
  • 74 km: the combined distance of the two individual time trials
  • 131: times Paris has hosted a start or finish of the Tour
  • 19 km: the shortest flat stage of the race (The first stage; from Fromentine to Noirmoutier-en-l'Ile)
  • 198: riders at the start
  • 239.5 km: longest stage in the Tour (Stage 17, from Pau to Revel)
  • 381 euros: prize money for riders finishing race after 120th position
  • 1,200: number of hotel rooms reserved for teams and their staff, press, and Tour personell
  • 1904: The year of the first documented case of cheating in the Tour
  • 2,400: hours of TV coverage
  • 2004 m: the altitude of the Courchevel (10th stage), the highest climb on this year's race
  • 3607 km: the total distance
  • 7620 euros: prize money for the winner of a stage
  • 8400: food bags distributed at feeding stations throughout race
  • 20,000 euros: in prize money to most combative rider in race
  • 25,055: number of security personnel.
  • 42,000: water bottles used by teams in race
  • 353,430 km: approx. distance of all previous 90 Tours de France
  • 400,000 euros: prize money for race winner
  • 2,877,705 euros: total prize money for the entire race

Congrats Lance, and we'll miss you next year...

-Joe