I started following the Tour de France in around 2002 thanks to sharing an office with an avid tdf fan, Jeremy. A few years later we got to see a couple of stages when it was in the UK. I’ve maintained an interest over the years, and thought I’d share the various media I’m using this year to keep in touch.
- ITV’s excellent Tour de France highlights programme – pretty much the same familiar format every year – ITV also have live coverage on their website, but I’d generally rather watch the highlights in an evening
- ITV’s podcast – nothing different to the tv really, but still comforting.
- Radio 5 lives sports extra’s broadcasts – 3 scheduled during this years tour.
- Tour 2010 iPhone app – I couldn’t justify paying £5.99 for the official app, especially when the free taster app seemed so slow and unresponsive, so I went for this bargain 59p app instead. It is pretty responsive, seems to handle the live updates reasonably well, and seems pretty accurate and provides at a glance views of tables, stages etc. Screenshots (taken in relation to stage 4) are below for those looking for a review of this app.
- Twitter list described as “Riders, management, photogs, journos likely to be at the Tour de France 2010” and quite a good way to see what the people in the know have to say
This is a splash screen showing a yellow, green and polka dot jersey. Clicking on one of them takes you to a detail page. It doesn’t give the White shirt details – which is shame as the UK’s Gerraint Thomas is currently wearing it, but it does show the GC, green jersey and king of the mountains, in each case offering a rider view and a team view:
The stage view changes according to whether the stage has happened yet.
Before the stage: gives an expected start time, and highlights the interesting points (mountain points and sprint points)
During the stage: visual indicator of proportion of race completed, information about gaps between breakaway, peleton and any other groups along with a second page showing further details
After the stage (there is a delay between the stage finishing and the data updating): shows the top 3 placed riders in the stage plus the holders of the yellow, green and polka dot jerseys. A second page shows the order the riders finished in, and their time differences.
The calendar view shows a view of about 5 days at a time of distance, start and end points, expected start time and an idea of the profile of the stage. Great for getting an idea of who the stage will favour.
The application has a few words which haven’t been translated into English, for instance opdated, gruppe etc, but they don’t stop me from following what is going on. The application has also crashed a couple of times, whilst getting updates during the race (it updates at a different rate depending on how much of the race is left). At a price of 59p, these are issues I can live with, but it isn’t quite my ideal app, I would, and have, recommended it to others based on these issues though.
Instead, my ideal app would have:
- All jerseys listed
- Team view for classification
- Ability to view where a sprinters points have come from
- Ability to see where the king of the mountains points have come from
- Details on each rider – when a rider is mentioned, you can select the rider in the app, but it doesn’t do anything – would be great to have a fact page including their standings in the various competitions
If anyone knows of an app that does all of what this one does, and my extra bits, then please let me know.