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The Call of the Road: The History of Cycle Road Racing

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14 hours

Summary

Since the invention of the bicycle, people have raced them. The advent of the pneumatic tyre meant that these races could take place on any road in any country—cycle road racing was born.

In just over a century the Tour de France has become the most watched sporting event, and the Giro d’Italia, Vuela d’Espagne and Spring Classics are expanding to fill the entire year with competitions which are watched by millions of fans, and the routes are cycled by hundreds of thousands of amateurs keen to discover what it is like to ride 200 arduous kilometres in one day, in some cases over the steepest of routes. Intertwined with these competitions is the history and, most importantly, the characters who have graced the road cycling stage. Merckx, Indurain, Coppi, Pantani, Binda, Rominger and Hinault are names that have been raised to mythical status.

The Call of the Road reveals the epic battles of all of the racing seasons since the first Tour de France, looking beyond the results to see the drama—not just on the road but within the teams and between individuals - and the politics and scandal that continue to fascinate cycle road race fans everywhere.

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