Mike Smith’s Giro d’Italia!!

26th- 30th  May 26th- 30th  May 2004

A Mike-less cycle race around the Parc Naturel Regional du Haut Languedoc in France!

2004 Team Leader (in absentia)


‘The Cluttons’ - professionals (won't race for less than 20 notes)

Brian, Sheila

‘The Gluttons’ - Corinthians (race for pride and points alone)

K1, K2, Dave, JR, Frank

A Less than Thrilling Account

The following rules were obeyed to the letter:

            NO problems with planes

            NO problems with bike boxes – hiring or storing

            NO major mechanical breakdowns

            NO reckless riding

            NO crashes or scrapes

            NO out-of-control downhill racing

            NO excessive drinking

            NO overeating

            NO undereating and consequent bonking

            NO hangovers

            NO heinous public flatulence

            NO seriously uncivilised behaviour

            NO raucous noise in bars (except during Babyfoot)

            NO public nudity in lakes

That all makes for a relaxing and hassle-free tour; however, this is not the raw material for a blockbusting narrative.  The Hollywood call is not anticipated.

Top male professional – 20 Euro:  Brian
Best female cyclist – 10 Euro: Sheila (as always)
Stand-in Team Leader  JR
Organisation and general usefulness   Sheila/Brian/JR
Best young cyclist  Frank (as always)
Oldest cyclist   K1 (as always)
Best at surprise sprints: Dave
Best long breakaways  K2
Top hill climber  Frank
Logistics and consistent riding  JR
Most reckless downhill  Dave
Risking all without a helmet  Frank
Least stylish cycling socks  JR
‘Crusty old git’ old pedal award  K1
Loudest babyfoot goal celebrations   Dave

plus many other awards even more trivial to mention.


And finally the team leader……

Mike Smith’s Journey into the Lower Palaeozoic

Where was our mentor in absentia?  Mike was reputed to be in Nebraska collecting fossilised rats for the local (sic) museum in Charleston; consult a map of the USA to illuminate this statement.  Just prior to our tour BBC News reported tornadoes sweeping through and a declaration of a state of emergency in Nebraska.  Mike is invited to contribute his account right here……………..

….and so to Next Year – Le Tour 2005

….when JR will officially join the ‘old gits’ and, no doubt, organise a trip to somewhere exotic that will probably end up being in France.


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