The Tour de France is arguably one of the toughest cycle races known to man. The rolling hills, the high mountains & the endless plains provide millions of viewers with thrilling road racing every year. The 99th edition of the race kicked off on the 30th of June and saw 18 teams & more than 200 riders battle it out for the coveted yellow jersey.
This iconic race was first staged in France in 1903 and covers a staggering average of 3600 km’s over the course of three weeks. The first race was born out of a rivalry between two French sporting newspapers, both stuck in a bid to outsell each other, and attracted between 60 – 80 entrants none of whom were professional cyclists. Since then however, Le Tour has gone on to capture the imagination of millions of enthusiasts worldwide.
Over the last 109 years the race has evolved from an amateur pastime into fierce & highly competitive professional contest. Technology has been instrumental in this change, sometimes even to the point of controversy, and with the advancements in aerodynamics, frame design and even rider uniforms, the records of the past have been smashed over the last two decades.
Today with the skyrocketing prizes of modern cycling equipment, many amateurs and professional teams, alike, have turned to multi-purpose smart devices to assist in training and race situations.
Luckily, the age of smartphones have enabled us to bypass & utilize apps to replicate even most of these expensive gadgets at a much more affordable cost. Now every Cycling enthusiast has access to some of the top training & tracking equipment once reserved only for cycling's elite professionals!Here’s a list of some of my top Android apps to use when you’re out on the road
1. Strava Cycling:
Track your progress and challenge your friends. Record all your rides, analyze your performance and see how you stack up against friends and locals. Set new personal records and beat your friends’ times! Strava Cycling tracks your performance with your phone’s internal GPS and gives you detailed activity stats including distance, pace and elevation. This app is a must for any serious cyclist.
2. Bike Repair:
Bike Repair is a must for any long distance rider. It comes with 55 highly detailed photo repair guides and 77 bicycle related problems explained. Fixing your shifting problem, derailleur noises, brakes rubbing on the wheel, flat tire, broken chain, pedal removal, & maintaining hydraulic brakes has never been easier. Bike Repair will demystify basic repairs and maintenance routines, as well as guide you through intermediate to advanced issues too.
3. Noom Cardio Trainer:
Cardio Trainer is ideal for winter conditioning & training. It’s Google Health’s first mobile partner and comes with handy workout schedule reminders. It also has a built-in friend activity feed to motivate you on lazy mornings and sports integrated voice output & a music player to keep you in the zone when you’re on the road.
4. Tour de France 2012:
Keeping up to date on cycling’s most grueling race has never been easier than with the official Tour de France Android app. See who’s competing for the yellow jersey & get detailed information on all 21 stages straight to your Android handset!