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As Bradley Wiggins aims to head to Paris in yellow, sponsor IG Markets showcases the numbers involved in Team Sky's Tour...

Assuming Bradley Wiggins survives today's final mountain stage of the Tour de France without mishap, we'll almost certainly be celebrating Britain's first ever winner of the race come Sunday. It would be a huge achievement, and one that even the wildest optimist wouldn't have predicted just 18 months ago. If he wins, it won't just be due to the efforts of the eight team mates who began the race alongside him in Liege. A full supporting staff will also have played their role, and will have dealt with some mind-boggling numbers - can you picture what 3,000 bidons look like? Here, thanks to Team Sky sponsor IG Makets, are two infographics detailing the team's 2012 race in numbers.

Born in Scotland, Simon moved to London aged seven and now lives in the Oxfordshire Cotswolds with his miniature schnauzer, Elodie. He fell in love with cycling one Saturday morning in 1994 while living in Italy when Milan-San Remo went past his front door. A daily cycle commuter in London back before riding to work started to boom, he's been news editor at road.cc since 2009. Handily for work, he speaks French and Italian. He doesn't get to ride his Colnago as often as he'd like, and freely admits he's much more adept at cooking than fettling with bikes.

12 comments

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notfastenough [3708 posts] 4 years ago
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45 bikes, 176 wheels and 3000 bottles? How do they fit it all into the trucks?

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Abdoujaparov [21 posts] 4 years ago
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So that's over 300 bottles per rider then, or about 14 bottles per rider per day? Crikey.

I've always wondered is someone coming along behind the race picking up all the rubbish? Obviously fans collect some empty bottles but what about the rest?

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Blackhound [442 posts] 4 years ago
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Mentioned on Eurosport yesterday that there is a broom wagon to pick up rubbish left by riders.

5 bikes each sounds a lot. Flat, mountain & TT I suppose. Rest day / rollers pre TT maybe. Is the other a pub bike?

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Stefan [60 posts] 4 years ago
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There is a clean up team i think the day after, made up of volunteers, most bottles are picked up by spectators though - you often see riders throwing bottles to them anyway.

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Bhachgen [111 posts] 4 years ago
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The Jaguar Team Car runs on Gatorade?

Must cost even more to run than the usual diesel version...

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Chuck [555 posts] 4 years ago
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I think I heard one of the commentators say the bottles are biodegradeable too.

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Simon_MacMichael [2457 posts] 4 years ago
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Sky, like most (all?) teams at this level use biodegradable bottles.

In the roadbook, it's pointed out to riders that there are bins at the start and end of the feedzone for them to throw rubbish such as bidons and wrappers.

Outside that zone, they're supposed to stash rubbish in their pockets. Rrrrrrrrright.

Many riders will make a point of saving an empty bidon until they're passing a bunch of schoolkids.

If you're heading into the end of a sprint stage and passing through open countryside, it's pretty much throw it and never mind where it lands though.

BTW if you want to see a real sweeping operation in action, stick around the route of the London Marathon after most runners have passed. I used to live in Greenwich with one of the water stations nearby and it was amazing how quickly they cleaning crew came through and dealt with everything - thousands of empty bottles, other litter, even temporary road markings. Gone in the twinkling of an eye.

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Hamster [97 posts] 4 years ago
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Kesikerov was shown pocketing his gel wrappers on the last descent

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bikeandy61 [538 posts] 4 years ago
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Don't gel wrappers make a sticky mess. I always pocket mine when I use them unless there is a handy bin but they make a bloomin mess. Refillable mini bottles or tubes would be much better. Possibly. I try to carry a placky bag in a pocket to bin em in but lack the dexterity of pro riders. Or 8 year old kids for that matter. But then there really is no reason for me not to stop for 2 minutes to take care of business, I'm not trying t win a race. I think that having followed racing for so long it's just sort of programed in that I try to do everything on the move. Except toilet breaks and putting on/taking off gillet/jacket. I have studied the technique but it looks like a recipe for a macadam sarnie to me.  4 20

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Raleigh [1667 posts] 4 years ago
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Bhachgen wrote:

The Jaguar Team Car runs on Gatorade?

We definitely need a like button

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tao24 [75 posts] 4 years ago
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Blackhound wrote:

Mentioned on Eurosport yesterday that there is a broom wagon to pick up rubbish left by riders.

5 bikes each sounds a lot. Flat, mountain & TT I suppose. Rest day / rollers pre TT maybe. Is the other a pub bike?

More like 3 x Road bike (1 being ridden, 1 on each of the 2 cars each team has), then 2 x TT bike, 1 for the ride, 1 as spare on the car.

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notfastenough [3708 posts] 4 years ago
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bikeandy61 wrote:

Don't gel wrappers make a sticky mess. I always pocket mine when I use them unless there is a handy bin but they make a bloomin mess. Refillable mini bottles or tubes would be much better. Possibly. I try to carry a placky bag in a pocket to bin em in but lack the dexterity of pro riders. Or 8 year old kids for that matter. But then there really is no reason for me not to stop for 2 minutes to take care of business, I'm not trying t win a race. I think that having followed racing for so long it's just sort of programed in that I try to do everything on the move. Except toilet breaks and putting on/taking off gillet/jacket. I have studied the technique but it looks like a recipe for a macadam sarnie to me.  4 20

I've got a Lezyne snack pouch which sits on the top tube attached to the stem. I'm thinking that rather than store food there, I might keep the gels/bars in a jersey pocket and stash the used wrappers in the pouch. This way, I don't need pro-levels of no-handlebar riding skill to put the wrappers away without covering my phone/keys/rain jacket/other food with sticky goo!