Author: Suze Clemitson

Will Chris Froome become the third cyclist to win the Tour-Vuelta double?

Jacques Anquetil and Bernard Hinault are the only cyclists to have won the Tour and Vuelta in the same year – and they did it before the calendar changed

By Suze Clemitson of 100 Tales 100 Tours, part of the Guardian Sport Network

Will Chris Froome do the double? Sky’s leader arrived at the start line in Nîmes last Saturday morning with a “sense of mission” to join Frenchmen Jacques Anquetil and Bernard Hinault as the only riders to have won both the Tour de France and the Vuelta a España in the same season. “Previous years, the Vuelta felt like an afterthought,” said Froome. “This year we’ve thought about it a lot. We’re going there with a sense of mission and I just want to have a real shot at it.”

So far so good for Froome, who took the red jersey after the third stage on Monday and went on to extended his lead over the week. He hasn’t won a stage yet but he did not win any at the Tour either and that didn’t end too badly.

Related: Tomasz Marczynski sprints to maiden grand tour win in Vuelta stage six

Related: Women could cycle the Tour de France route, so why give them La Course?

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Women could cycle the Tour de France route, so why give them La Course?

Annemiek Van Vleuten was a worthy winner of the two-day race but women cyclists deserve more than a shortened mountain stage and a novelty pursuit

By Suze Clemitson of 100 Tales 100 Tours, part of the Guardian Sport Network

Anyone who watched Annemiek van Vleuten’s sickening, bone-crunching crash as she was heading for gold in the women’s road race at the Olympics last summer will have been roaring her over the line in the concluding stage of La Course on Saturday. Van Vleuten was a worthy winner, having battled back to fitness after suffering three spinal fractures and a severe concussion in Rio. Her victory means a Dutch rider has won the race in three of the last four years.

The previous three editions of La Course took place on the final Sunday of the Tour de France, with a sprint on the Champs-Élysées, but the organisers introduced a new format this year. On Thursday, riders raced a 67km mountain stage from Briançon to the top of the fearsome Col d’Izoard. The top finishers from Thursday qualified for a 22.5km pursuit-style individual time trial in Marseille on Saturday.

Related: Annemiek van Vleuten wins La Course stage one with Lizzie Deignan second

Related: Lizzie Deignan critical of La Course format after Van Vleuten’s easy win

Related: Condoms, chicks and La Course: the Tour de France still has a sexism problem

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Philippa York can be the trailblazer who hauls cycling into the 21st century

Philippa York’s decision to speak publically about her transition should be a powerful and positive moment for the sport

By Suze Clemitson of 100 Tales 100 Tours, part of the Guardian Sport Network

Ellis, Acton, and Currer Bell. Robert Galbraith. George Eliot. Since Charlotte Bronte declared that she and her sisters “had a vague impression that authoresses are liable to be looked on with prejudice,” talented women writers have chosen to use a male pseudonym. More recently, when Catherine Nichols submitted a manuscript under her own name and then under a male nom de plume, the results were predictable. The problem, she concluded, wasn’t the manuscript but her gender.

When introducing her new name to her readers at CyclingNews, York wrote: “Various articles and blogs have been published using my former identity of Robert, well that was then and this is now.” This reminded me of all the women writers who have used a male identity to confer an authenticity or authority on their opinions that would be dismissed under their given name. But York’s opinion on cycling carries the weight of lived experience. Where once she was that exceptional being, a pure mountain climber who could soar when the road turns towards the skies, the fragile bird-like physique is now that of an elegant woman finally allowed to be comfortable in her own skin.

Related: Philippa York: ‘I’ve known I was different since I was a five-year-old’

Related: Condoms, chicks and La Course: the Tour de France still has a sexism problem

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Condoms, chicks and La Course: the Tour de France still has a sexism problem

The Tour organisers told Jan Bakelants to apologise for his stupid sexist comments but they should also update their own attitude to women’s cycling

By Suze Clemitson of 100 Tales 100 Tours, part of the Guardian Sport Network

How can you tell it’s Tour de France time? Because up pops a doping positive. Step forward André Cardoso of the Trek-Segafredo team! But this year, Cardoso may have to cede the stupid crown to Jan Bakelants. The AG2R La Mondiale rider is in trouble for his sexist/funny comments (delete as appropriate depending on your place on the evolutionary scale) about condoms and podium girls.

Asked what he would take with him for his free moments during the Tour, Bakelants said: “A packet of condoms, for sure. You never know where those podium chicks have been hanging out.” The Belgian, who won a stage and wore the Yellow Jersey at the 2013 Tour, can be excused for feeling under pressure before racing for a French team in the biggest race of the season, but this supposed joke came after he had told his interviewer he would miss his “cute little daughter” Julia the most over the three weeks of racing“but we’ll see each other every day via Skype.”

Related: Only in cycling could a sexual assault inspire a race’s advertising strategy

Related: Cycling needs to lose its ‘podium girls’ | Suze Clemitson

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