27 July 2008

Stage Twenty-One: Étampes > Paris Champs-Élysées

Sadly, the Tour draws to a close for another year as the riders make their traditional trip into Paris to complete their world-famous circuit of the Place de la Concorde, Rue de Rivoli, and the Champs-Elysées. It is universally acknowledged that there are no attacks on the yellow jersey in the final stage, so Carlos Sastre will be free to enjoy the ride (and have a glass or two of champagne - served from the team car - on the way into Paris).

Gert Steegmans won the prestigious sprint to take Team QuickStep's first stage victory in 2008, beating out a who's who of green jersey contenders. I'm sure they all had a chance to say au revoir to one another before going hell for leather for the line one last time!

Just in case this is your only source of TDF news - here are the final standings!
Yellow: Carlos Sastre (CSC)
Green: Oscar Freire (Rabobank)
Polka Dot (and 3rd place in the GC): Bernard Kohl (Gerolsteiner)
White: Andy Schleck (CSC)
Team: CSC

What do these riders get for riding in the Tour (other than the sheer enjoyment of it of course)? There is an elaborate system of prize monies awarded to top place-getters in each jersey classification and to the overall winners. The richest prize, of course, goes to the maillot jaune. This year, Sastre will take home €450,000. Traditionally a team's winnings are pooled and shared amongst the riders and support team. Perhaps there will be a bit set aside for a cycling charity, such as World Bicycle Relief!

Of course many of our knitters have their eyes on the knitted prize and over the next few days we hope you will put together your highlights package as your entry in our grand final intermediate sprint! Don't forget, entries close at midnight PARIS TIME on 29th July!

Your KAL co-hostesses would like to say merci to all of our participants who made the 2008 KAL so much fun! And we're sure you all join us in thanking our lovely chefs d'equipe, without whom we could not have survived! As a small token of our appreciation, we have drawn a team leader's name at random to receive the original artwork by HCA used in this year's KAL banner and jersey buttons. It seems Team CSC is going home with nearly all the prizes - Teri, the splendid leader of Team CSC, please step forward and take a bow on behalf of all your colleagues! (and also, please send Meg an email with your address!) We hope you will enjoy your artwork!

Over the next few days, the team leaders will be checking in with their team's final wrap-ups, so please make sure you keep checking back in to admire your fellow participants' knits!

Garmin-Chipotle posts:
Rosemary’s Maillot Dentelle’s whole body is now finished, thanks to a stint while waiting at Gatwick Airport for daughter's return from Spain. Several people commented on the lace as they passed by! She has now started the border which has a complicated 12 row pattern which she says she is never going to memorise. Each repeat only measures 3cm, so maybe she will remember it by the time she has knitted enough to go all the way up one side, round the neck and down the other. Her daughter took pictures of the back and a close up of the nice crunchy textured lace.

Norma is back from her wee stayaway, ibut her knitting got a bit put to the side lovely French champagne drinking hmm!!!! Her scarf was finished and worn in the cold , the polka dot jersey grewa nd the cardigan has one front finished and another on the way .The back had a growth spurt, the boring back of cardy was good for 1am when I could do without concentrating (as she did have the race to watch, way more important. The KAL was heaps of fun and she loved the blog and the work put into it. She sent well done for another Tour you hard working leaders. Hooray Garmin Chipotle for what they did too, cheers !!!
Norma’s bears are trying to distract you from her work!

Team AG2R-Mondiale

Katie is racing along with her Nether Garmets. She's already on the second leg.

Gemma has had a steep alpine climb with her knitting, aiming for the Polka Dot Jersey. But look – the shawl is in the hand of a yellow-jerseyed biker!
Team FDJ News:
Well the Tour is nearing the finish, so how have the FDJ Knitters been doing?
First up, Janine has well and truly earned her Green Jersey. Not only has she a beautiful finished Clapotis (see below), but she also made a blog post about it for every stage of le Tour which allowed everyone to see how the project was growing and growing. Felicitations Janine!

Leah had some struggles with the cold weather (Australian winter) causing her hands to ache, thereby making progress on her February Lady Sweater difficult. She has however almost finished the raglan decreases section, and once the weather warms up she'll have a beautiful garment.
Jen needs to banish all ideas that she will be kicked out of le Tour KAL because she has been a little distracted this past week with a new iPhone and EBook reader. We're not that strict around here! She has made progress on her cabled socks:

Stacy is also confident that her Mon Cheri baby sweater will be pretty much finished by the end of Le Tour:

Helen's I Do Shrug is coming along beautifully, although she had a bit of a crash the other day when she suffered a really bad cut on her hand while gardening rendering her unable to knit. As she said, the moral of the story = "don't do housework"! She is determined to finish the shrug in time for her friend's birthday.
Julia's Entrelac socks are also looking superb:

As for me, i finally have a photo of my Baudelaire socks in progress. There's clearly no way I'll get them finished by the end of the Tour but i'll keep plugging away until they're done!

See you on the other side of the Champs-Elysee!

Team Lampre update: Results thus far on the final "official" TdF day- Cindy has made a lot of progress, but is back to the drawing board for the Stargate intarsia motif. Sarah finished the back and left front of the Getaway Jacket and has a start on the right front. Kristen is to the armhole decreases on the front of the Hand in Hand vest. I haven't heard yet from all team members but will have a final progress report when the results are all in.


Rose Red said...

A huge thank you (oh, that should be merci - my French is, unfortunately, terrible!) to Meg and Debby for running this KAL again this year - it has been fantastic (fantastique?!) - I will really miss not sitting up until the wee small hours (actually, I won't miss that part much) and the daily updates. A truly fabulous KAL! Yay for all the participants and all the team leaders, and of course, the riders. We're all Wimmers!

Stacy said...

Thanks so much for organizing this year's Tour!

T. said...

Thanks so much!! I had a great time doing this and can't believe my prize!

Anonymous said...

Well done Teri in getting that wonderful art work!

Sarah said...

Thanks so much for this fab KAL and congrats to Teri who was a wonderful team leader - ah the reflected glory of being in CSC :o)

Auntly H said...

Thanks for great fun and inspiring me to get my sweater done, even when I almost ran out of yarn. The FO is posted. I'll try to do a better highlights summary tonight...

Portlandia said...

This has been so fun! It was great to be a part of the KAL this year!. Thank you very much for the considerable organizing and time that it took to pull this off.

It was lots and lots of fun to be 'sprinting' along with the riders....and it was such an exciting race this year too...