Cycling Strategies at the Tour De FranceWritten by Rooster
To casual observer, Tour De France is just a bicycle race, a feat of strength and endurance, participated in by teams of men from around world. But winning this almost century old race has more to do with mental toughness and team strategy than one would imagine. Lance Armstrong recognizes this better than anybody, as evidenced by his long string of consecutive Tour De France victories. Of course, to win, you also need incredible strength and stamina, several high dollar touring bicycles, a multitude of bicycle accessories, years of course preparation and work ethic of an eighteenth century immigrant.
To really have a chance to win Tour De France takes more than a yearís subscription to Cycling News. You need more than just incredible strength of Lance Armstrong leader of Discovery Pro Cycling Team, ultra-rare combination of slow and fast twitch muscles and an incredibly expensive performance touring bike. You need to understand peloton and role it plays in supporting leader. You must understand importance of time trial. You also have to understand and embrace chivalrous code of racing practiced by these incredible athletes.
Limits of this Article
To cover bicycle racing strategy completely would fill volumes. Bicycle racing is a science that has been researched for over one hundred years by thousands of dedicated enthusiasts. Therefore, to conform to space and time constraints of this article, Iíll mention just a couple of major points.
Peaking at Right Time
Pre race strategy is probably most important ingredient in formula to win a Tour de France. Competitors arrive in France weeks, sometimes months in advance to train on course. For them, this is no casual European bicycle tour. Riders and coaches evaluate every variable. Heart rates are measured and recovery rates are scrutinized. Blood samples are taken on training days and then again on days off to measure glycogen and lactic acid. Nutrition is a science for these dedicated athletes and their coaches. Food is analyzed at molecular level; menus are planned months in advance and adjusted according to humidity and temperature. All while athletes and coaches are trying to accomplish one simple goal. They want competitor to be at his physical peak on day of start of Tour de France.
Paintball Team StrategiesWritten by Rooster
So there you are just you and your best buddies, hip deep in muck. You hear a twig snap, turn too late and you and your buddies are quickly covered in brightly colored paint circles. Youíve been fragged by enemy. Even worse, youíve been outsmarted by enemy. It doesnít have to be this way.
You and your team need a strategy. Most paintballers ignore stealth and accuracy and instead focus on movement and firepower. Thatís their mistake, donít let it be yours. War is war. A battle is a battle. Some of most brilliant minds in history from Genghis Kahn to General Macarthur have studied and improved art of battle. Your paintballing experience will be well served if youíll learn from them.
Use a Sniper
Most paintballers do not understand sniper play and most paintballers discount accuracy. They favor movement and firepower. Of course firepower and forceful movement have their place on paintball field just as they have their place in real combat. But how many times have powerful aggressive forces bogged down in long drawn out shooting matches. This is how Napoleon lost at Waterloo and Hitler lost in Russia. Of course an accurate, long distance shot with a paintball gun is just not in realm of possibility. However, a well placed ambush sniper can pick your adversary apart after they pass. If your sniper is willing to belly-crawl into position he can get behind or beside enemy force and pick them apart
Get yourself a good ghillie cape. All paint ball guns have about same range so, your advantage is in getting closer to your enemy. If your paint gun, mask, and your pod belt are completely camouflaged in ghillie leaf, youíll have a significant advantage in wooded margins of battle field. If youíre well camouflaged, opposition will walk right by you without noticing you.
Consider purchasing a good red dot or holographic sight to make your first shots count. Make sure to use raised sight rails or special stocks to give your mask clearance youíll need. Remember, a good sight will line you up with target but, you still need to adjust for wind and drop over distance. Paintballs are not nearly as aerodynamic as a long, lean rifle bullet. A good Spyder paintball gun with raised sight rails and a holographic sight will put you at a definite advantage on paintball field.