Today, stage 7 of the Amgen Tour of California, finished in the city of Pasadena. It brought us good weather along with the best racing and biggest crowds of the tour. Pasadena is a beautiful city, and obviously, home of the world famous Rose Bowl. The final 20 miles of today’s stage took place in the form of five, four mile circuits around the legendary arena. Following the incredible sprint finish, the post-race press confrence took place in the Rose Bowl media room, the same one used by the winning teams and coaches following the college bowl game.
There is an entire entourage of media and press that travels with the tour, from every corner of the earth. Some are here because of the “Lance factor”, but most are simply following one of the largest and most prestigious stage races in the world. Immediatly following the race, there is a rush to spread the information to the rest of the world, and they do it in an incredibly fast manner. I shot the video below in the press room, just about an hour after the conclusion, after the initial rush to send results had passed and writers were then working on their feature stories.
I was also able to catch a bit of the press confrence with former Tour de France champion Floyd Landis. I shot the video with the intention of giving an idea of what the press room is like, Landis is answering a “softball” question in the video.
While you have an idea of the atmosphere in the press confrence room, I want to talk about the very last question asked. Before the questions even started, Landis made some opening remarks and made it very clear that he was there to discuss his current racing season, and was not interested in, nor would he entertain, questions regarding his past (if you will recall, Landis was stripped of his Tour de France win after testing positive for a banned substance.) It was announced that Landis would take three more questions; the first went by, the second, and then VeloNews reporter Neal Rogers stepped up to the microphone. The question went something like “I know you don’t want to talk about your past, but are you finding that people are still interested in talking about it and what happened?”
Without flinching, Landis replied, “You know, I said I wouldn’t answer questions about my past, and I don’t think I want to answer questions about questions about my past either, but nice try.” He thanked the press, stood up, waited for some photos, and quietly left the room to the roaring applause of the entire room. An instant classic.
Thats all for now, check back tomorrow for some crowd and race pictures from today and tomorrow. We are staying at the fabulous Rancho Bernardo Inn for the next two days, so I will try to get a blog post in sometime between attending a world class cycling race and playing the front nine here in Rancho Bernardo. I can’t belive people would live in any state other than California.
Wish you were here!