Road Gear

Tech Podcast: Big tech moments from the Tour de France

Tech moments at the Tour de France happen often — from a dropped chain to a secret skinsuit. Gear and tech can quietly dictate the winners and losers.

Can it be? Can racing really be happening? The 2020 Tour de France is slated to start in just a few short weeks, so it seemed like a great time to reflect on Tours past. But this is the Tech Pod, so we’ll leave the race analysis to the other guys. We’re here to talk about the most consequential tech moments at the Tour de France.

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In this episode, VeloNews European correspondent and longtime Tour de France stalwart journalist Andrew Hood joins tech editor Dan Cavallari to talk about a few of the great tech moments Hoody has seen since covering his first Tour in 1996. Derailleurs get wonky, wheels break, and new tech advancements crop up, often quietly, every July in France. Hoody has seen a lot of it over the years and recounts some of his favorite moments, and looks forward to what we might see this September as the Tour de France hits uncharted autumn territory.

Editorial director Ben Delaney also sits in to talk about his favorite gear-focused moment at the Tour: Chaingate, which sent the GC leaderboard into a tizzy at the 2010 Tour de France as Andy Schleck wrestled a dropped chain — and Alberto Contador attacked.

From Greg LeMond’s inaugural ride with aero bars in the peloton to dimpled skinsuit wars between Teams Sky and Movistar at the 2017 Tour de France, bikes and gear have quietly been integral in writing the story of the winners — and the losers.

If you have questions about this episode of the VeloNews Tech Podcast, or if you have suggestions for topics you’d like us to cover on a future episode, feel free to reach out to tech editor Dan Cavallari via email, Instagram, or Twitter.

[Editor’s Note: Apologies in advance for the sound quality. Despite the miracle of the Internet allowing a guest to chime in from Spain, that miracle came with a distinct buzz.]