2 September 2010

Etapa a etapa

 Etapa a etapa (stage by stage)... Wednesday Sept 1st was when the bikes came to town - or the rural outskirts of an already rural village. The road to Maria is favoured by bikers, usually on Sundays when they can open the throttle and take on a challenging journey through the foothills of the Sierra de Umbria and Sierra de Maria.

The first day in September though invloved a very different type of bike, the Spanish equivilent of the Tour de France was taking place and a few days earlier all the locals had discovered that the cyclists would be passing by the sleepy hamlet of Fuente Nueva at around 3.00 in the afternoon.

A big event, walking down the road family in tow we passed a neighbour sitting with his wife with a beer and a bowl of olives ready to take in the spectacle, from an elevated position he probably had the best spot under his enormous fig tree, nice and relaxed, in the shade not like us odd English with cameras waiting further down in the midday sun.

Bikes passed including as many Gaurdia Civil (traffic police) in thier 4x4's and somewhat impressive two wheeled BMW's kitted up to the hilt with all manner of equipment designed to stop the likes of you and me, put the fear of God into you and make your bank account three hundred euros lighter (if you have a heavy foot you understand)

Then came the cars... bikes on the roof and the first glimmer of the front runners, a handfull of racers making a decent pace up the incline. There were a few spectators waiting at various points along the road but the highlight was a mad cameraman on the back of a Hayabusa swapping through 3 lenses on the move to get close ups of the front runners (Guardia looking on with a distinct squint in his eye)

As soon as it began it was over but having never seen a cycle race so close up before it was quite dramatic - for a few seconds at least, sitting on the fence as to if it was worth the sunburn but we got some decent shots of something that rarely happens this far out in Spain :)


No comments: