Inspired by a little-known picture book from the pen of Bethany Tudor, this is a diary, of sorts, where I document some of my thoughts, activities, and ideas as I explore the challenges met by the characters in the story: hard work, the care and nurture of others, housekeeping skills, life changes, charity, community, and cooperation, among others. Like Samuel and Samantha, the ducks in the tale, I struggle and succeed, cope and celebrate, work and play, handling the tasks that come my way. I invite you to join me on my journey.

Friday, July 13, 2007

The "Old Man" in the Lead

I cannot believe I overlooked this important piece of information from Stage 5 of the Tour de France. With all the confusion of the crashes, I forgot to mention that the “old man” amongst the sprinters, Erik Zabel of Team Milram, moved into the lead for the green jersey. Known officially as the points classification competition, this shirt is worn by the rider who possesses the most sprint points of any rider in the race. For a full-blown article about this particular Tour de France contest, click here. Otherwise, read this summary from Wikipedia:
The maillot vert (green jersey) is awarded for sprint points. At the end of each stage, points are earned by the riders who finish first, second, etc. The number of points for each place and the number of riders rewarded varies depending on the stage – flat stages give 35 points down to 1 point for 25th; medium mountain stages give 25 points down to 1 for 20th; high mountain stages give 20 points down to 1 for the 15th. This is because, generally speaking, the more mountainous a stage is, the less likely is a sprint finish between many riders. Points are also awarded for individual time trials: 15 for the winner down to 1 for 10th. Additional points are avialable for sprints along the route, often two or three times a day, with the idea of pepping up the race.
In addition to being the current holder of the green jersey, Erik Zabel is the record holder for the points competition, having won six previous sprint titles in the Tour de France: 1996-2001. Well done!

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