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Sometimes I’m not sure who works harder — the professional cyclists riding on the tour, or all the people who work around the edges of the event helping turn the race into a world-class event. Like the photographers who follow the riders on motorcycles, jumping off their machines and back on again, climbing up to and down from unstable perches in search of the best possible angles, and dressed head to toe in black regardless of the warm temperatures.

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Meanwhile, as I was standing on the other side of the road with my camera, one of the riders in this 9-man leading group (Serghei Tvetcov, a Romanian on the United Healthcare team) noticed me and decided to toss his extra bidon in my direction. I didn’t manage to capture the moment he threw it, but you can see him on the left, in blue, reaching down to grab the bottle from its cage on the seat tube.

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This group was 4 minutes ahead of the main peloton and included Nelson Craddock (in pink), Sean Bennett (yellow bike), and Tom Skujins (red jersey far left), who ultimately won the King of the Mountains prize

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He still has one bidon left!
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My race souvenir

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And on to the next photo op…
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