Dolphin maths

The Dauphiné region takes its name from the coat of arms of Count Guigues IV of Albon which featured a dolphin. ‘Dauphin’ means ‘dolphin’ in French, so I guess Dauphiné means ‘dolphinny’ or something.

Anyway, today’s stage of the Critérium du Dauphiné was a time trial and as it was almost entirely flat, we got a good idea what sort of power the main riders can produce. This then gives us a decent overview of form leading up to the Tour de France.

Good time trials

Big, hefting Tony Martin won, even though he’s been suffering some form of the shits in recent days (it wasn’t the wild shits, but even low level shits can severely compromise the performance of an endurance athlete.) Martin is basically just a pair of big teutonic thighs with a few other human components hanging off them, so this is no great surprise. Winning time trials is what he does.

Other than that, it was a great day for Team Sky, who placed four riders in the top ten: Chris Froome (3rd), Edvald Boassen-Hagen (6th), Richie Porte (7th) and Geraint Thomas (10th).

Finally, the rider of (the name) Rohan came second. Young Aussie, Rohan Dennis, produced a cracking ride and has actually taken the yellow jersey.

Bad time trials

Alejandro Valverde and Joaquim Rodriguez lost a couple of minutes or so to Froome, but that’s no great surprise. They’re very much not Tony Martin. Their thing is moving at pace up the steepest slopes. Flat land does them no favours.

Rather more significantly, Alberto Contador finished between them, forming a big Spanish time-loss sandwich where both slices of bread and the filling are all little Spaniards on bicycles. He said that it was because he had allergy problems. Personally, I think allergies are a huge genetic flaw. People with allergies would die out in the wild.


2 responses to “Dolphin maths”

  1. Hey man,

    I remember reading this post back in the day – 2013, wow! How time flies – but my wife and I have just been talking about the title of this race, having watched the ITV4 highlights of yesterday’s TT.

    Anyway, Kristie pointed out that “dauphin” means dolphin but was also the regal title given to the heir of the monarchy in France.

    There’s a Wikipedia page – natch – – and a really, really cool coat of arms.

    Since the Criterium du Dauphiné is organised by ASO and is a warm-up for Le Tour – the name of the race might refer more to this “heir apparent” meaning. The winner of the Dauphiné is the heir apparent to the Tour de France.

    I hope this is news to you and not so bleedin’ obvs you’re rolling your eyes right now!

    Still, keep up the good work. And good luck with the old fatherhood-thing.

    Best wishes,

    I see above that “the wild shits” also gets an outing!

    1. Well the French title you refer to comes from this region, which gets its name from its ruler, who got the Dauphin nickname because there was a dolphin on his coat of arms.

      I like your theory, but unfortunately the race is just named after the region.

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