Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Best Cycling News Sites: The Tour de France Live

Tour de France live reporting and live updates: the Tour de France is on - but you cannot follow it because you happen to have to work during the day. What can you do to stay informed in real time while the stage is going on?

There are many sites that follows cycling. Two of them, however, do a really good job, in our opinion, both live and in post-stage analysis. They both follow the Tour de France live during the stage, then report on Tour de France News separately from their live reporting.

Daily Peloton.  The Daily Peloton has a live report (such as this live report for Stage 3) during the stage, which gives comments close to minute by minute. The comments give direct input on what happens, and also add some interpretation to the situation, often including a tactical analysis of the teams' decisions. Shortly after the stage is over, the Daily Peloton publishes posts for stage results and overall results. A small number of hours after the end of the stage, it comes out with an interesting post of reactions to the stage, which also includes a summary of the principal news, and analysis on the team and individual situation. The reactions' post is often fascinating in the insight that it provides about the stage. The Daily Peloton has a less corporate approach to the Tour, and a more amateurish look, but is also refreshing in its unvarnished comments on what is happening.

Cycling News. Cycling News also has a live report, updated in real time during the stage with updates close to minute by minute (such as this live report for Stage 3). This update is very factual and descriptive, and does not include a lot of analysis. The site follows up with a long summary and analysis of the stage of the day, which includes the results after the stage. If there are significant news for the day, specific posts for these news will typically be highlighted separately, with roughly five to six news releases per stage on average. Cycling News also publishes a large number of pictures of the stage. This is a really professional job of reporting.

Both the Daily Peloton and Cycling News are informative and entertaining, and are worth reading if you are interested in following the Tour in detail. The Daily Peloton has a more open and blunt approach to news and facts, and provides the best summary results tables. Cycling News has better pictures, and provides a more polished look - they also typically follow up on news reporting faster if big news are coming out. Overall, Cycling News puts on a bit more content than the Daily Peloton about the Tour. Both of them provide interesting analysis and perspectives. If you are not sure which is is best - neither are we - read both! If, for some reason, neither of the two has what you are looking for, you can also try the BBC online, which carries a less detailed live update, as well as a few stories on the Tour. If you want the live video stream, CyclingFans is the place to be. If you are after stories on the Tour rather than live reporting, VeloNation is also a good place to get commentaries and analysis.

Update: Added BBC, CyclingFans and VeloNation links

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