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Posted by wetalkhablamos in Uncategorized.

I wasn’t looking forward to today.

Stage 7 meant the end of the race and the end of my journey and it meant saying Goodbye to new friends. I was a little emotional at times and Rebecca had to bring me back to a level place. I’m so glad she was there. She wouldn’t let me focus on the negative of the day, only the positive things I’ve experienced the entire week. What a gift she has given me.

I didn’t mind the rain, really, but was concerned for the safety of the peloton. Rain and city streets don’t mix well but we were fortunate that it cleared up just in time for the stage start.

We got under a vendor canopy to stay dry and the ladies working there asked us if we were working. “No, we’re just getting out of the rain”. We ended up helping them move the canopy, sandbags and all.

Larry jokingly asked for some of the neon green bracelets they had and one of the girls gave them to us. It gave us access to that particular vendor area which happened to be some kind of VIP area with a massive spread of food. We never did go there to eat but did get some dessert on the way back to our cars.

During the stage, we had a great position just past the start line so every time the peloton went by was fantastic. We wouldn’t see them until they were right in front of us.

The timing between laps wasn’t too long at all and, because there was a break, we got to experience the excitement of each lap twice.

One time Chechu went by on our side of the street and noticed the flags causing him to grin from ear to ear.

I’m SO glad that Nicky sent the flags out so we could show our support for him and make him feel Welcome.

The stage ended in a sprint finish and ASTANA ended as the winner of the Team Competition. With Levi in 3rd, Toni in 4th and our Chechu in 11th, ASTANA showed that it is, indeed, the best team.

The guys looked nice all lined up on the podium together and, well, boys will be boys, and they went a little crazy when the champagne came out. I have a picture of Chris and Andrey trying to hide behind one of the podium girls.

We headed to the team bus one last time to say Goodbye. It was hard, but Chechu was sweet and hung out the window and talked with Larry, Cricket, Rebecca and me (and little Jenny the dog). It’s so natural for him, this sweetness and kindness.

Maybe one of his career options after retirement is motivational speaking. He just has a way about him that makes people want to pay attention.

Chechu gets Andrey to sign Amy’s paddle

Amy, now safely home from Georgia



1. Anikó Szász - May 1, 2008

Great pictures! Cheeeeeeeeeeeeeechuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuu!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I wish he came to Tour of Austria, I surely would be there to cheere for him and the rest of the team!

2. Chris (Tour Fan) - May 2, 2008

Isn’t that just awesome?! Thanks to Rebecca too, for helping keep the focus on the positive.

3. Veronika - May 3, 2008

Anikó, that’s my hope and wish, too, that he’ll come to my little country!!!!!!!!
I’ll sure go to the Tour of Austria again this year, and if I see Chechu’s name on the starting list… I’ll try to bring all my family with me =))) Of course you’re welcome to join us all ;)

All that I’ll need is a flag of Asturias… Nicky? :P

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