A TdF 2004 Special

By Kirsten Begg
Cycling Historian









A CR/OLN/CCB Tour de France Exclusive

Hotel: 9

July 11, 2004 

Odometer: 2200 km

Quimper, France

Stage: 8

Day: 14

Brand new bottles of $50 perfume smashed on the bathroom floor: 1

Stage 8

Ug, yesterday was ugly – a classic hurry up to slow down. Tomorrow is the rest day which will be great but to get there we have to also make the rest day show which we have to fit in on top of the other normal every day stuff. There’s also a crew of folks back at the production facility in Norwalk, CT cutting the PrimeTime and Roadside show and they’ll also cut the rest day show but they can’t really do it until we give them a show format and a script!!

So after yesterday’s stage we had a couple hours drive to the town of Carnac – it’s kind of off the Tour route but as a coastal town it’s a good locale for our “rest day”. Dinner finished at 11:30, I chilled for 30 minutes with a cup of tea and then sat in bed and spent 2 hours writng the rest day show script.

The alarm went off at a brutal 5:45 a.m. Yuk. Sunday’s are ugly for us as the CBS schmoes arrive. ‘Nuff said about them. So needless to say we had a 1hr-plus drive to the finish today for an 8 am crew call. Last week’s time sheet for me had 80 hours on it! Sounds like it sucks but anything over 40 is overtime – maybe I can treat my bike to some sweet new shiny things when I get home. Last year my post-Tour treat to myself was a carbon fiber “wing” kayak paddle. Nothing like shiny new toys to make it all worth while.

Anyway we have a long day today and then the opportunity to sleep-in tomorrow. We are in the Hotel La Diana in Carnac – it’s very nice – great restaurant and fairly plush rooms. Our crew admin folks – Anne and Audrey always try to get us somewhere nice for our day off – and boy do we appreciate it.

Carnac is on the Atlantic coast. The arm of Brittany points out into the Atlantic and while Quimper, today’s finish town, is at about the elbow, Carnac is in the armpit. The “La Diana” is a 4-star hotel on the sea front, as we say in Blighty. All we have to do tomorrow is get ourselves to the next day’s finish line town of Gueret. The riders get to fly but unfortunately that is a good 5-hr drive away so we do get a little “rest” but the rest part of rest day is a bit of a misnomer. They are really transfer days. However if I get to sleep on the beach in Carnac and dangle my toes in the Atlantic for even half an hour I’ll be a happy camper.

We’re halfway through our trip. We’ve been here 2 weeks tomorrow. It still does my head in a bit to think that we haven’t even got to the mountains – the driving there gets extremely interesting. Nothing like getting off the mountain driving on the wrong side of the road under police escort to enhance your driving skills.

Apart from that, everything is going well. We are all in the groove – getting extremely punchy on the evening drives but having some quite hilarious laughs in the car with Leslie and Bob.

The show goes on
More later


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Kirsten Begg (L), Kirsten Gum (R) in the office. Click picture for larger version.