PARRABUDDY.BLOGSPOT was started to help find a way for “Adaptive / Physically Challenged / Paralympic Cyclists ” to enjoy riding their bikes on the Daily Route of the famous Pro Tour Race Routes such as the “ Giro d’Italia " and the " Tour de France " !

Through lack of support i have been unable to achieve that goal and unless people decide to assist there is little chance that my 19th season will be any more successful !

London 2012 Paralympics was amazing for ALL , not just those participating but those who followed via the Media !

Since 2009 several other Blogs have been created to cover various other subjects !

Below is a guide to their separate purposes :

In the main Parrabuddy is about “Adaptive / Physically Challenged Sport” and Health Issues.

Skippi-cyclist is about personal issues and Road Safety Issues.

SkippyAus is about matters relating to Oz and some personal memories from my life there.

Tourdafarce & Tourdafrance are about matters relating to the Pro Tour , Racers and some personal experiences during my various visits to ride the Pro Tour routes .

Skippy (blogging) is about a variety of issues on the Internet .

NOT ALL postings arrive in their correct area but I will generally try to separate my views on Doping and Sporting Fraud from Road Safety Issues .

Comments ARE WELCOMED since this shows that those reading are interested in the subject matter ! Enjoy comments made to other blogs so wonder why only " anonymous " posts here !

Over the period of these "Blogs" I have had visibility on Twitter as “Skippydetour” and on Facebook as “Skippy Mc Carthy” where Google usually advise postings on the Blogs as they occur .

When any of you visit these Blogs I hope I am able to add value to your day and provide a source of information if not inspiration . Please consider asking your friends and contacts to add their support as many of the Para Athletes are struggling to find the resources to compete in Events at regional Levels let alone National Levels .

You the reader have the possibility to help these Amazing Athletes in your own way and contacting your National Paralympic Internet Site for relevant info is a good start !

Dec 22, 2009

GIRO 2009 part 1 of 3

As mentioned before the Big C touches all our lives, family and friends. Recently I was at my doctor for a checkup and whilst waiting for blood sampling in walked an Hawaiian mate who has settled in the Zillertal and works with “Lebenshilfe" (supervised homes) to collect a prescription. His news to me was that his mother had been taken ill and the supposedly light stroke was a very imminent terminal brain cancer In a few hours he was on the way to Munich and thence to Los Angeles, then to the family home. HE was hoping to arrive in time to farewell his mother who had decided to return home from hospital.

The photo is from @8WristBandman, Ken is currently undergoing intensive hospital care for cancer but still enjoys emailing and has been kind enough to forward photos and video relating to my adventures. Wish all were like him as there have been so many places visited and seen, and people met that deserve a permanent record. The photo was taken in Jesolo at the start of this past years Giro. I had not known the photo was taken until Ken forwarded it.

Over the years I have lost cousin JJ and his wife as well as my mother to cancer. Too many others such as “Apples “ the car dealer from Nth Sydney who I met up with again at Sydney 2000 have told me of their cancer concerns. Some I recommend Lance’s book to read as it helps validate a positive attitude. “she’ll be right mate “ does not cut the fear but a good read relieves the anxiety for a while at least. If anyone knows Apples and he hasn’t fallen off the perch have him make contact. My Sydney Olympic 2000 experiences will make an appearance at a later date as it was rich in detail.

Giro d’italia 2009 was a new experience for me as in past years there was no car nearby. It would continually cause me pain as I would abandon it to do etappes and then come back to relocate it time and again when I had no driver to help out. Of course in Rome it sat on the entry road to the team parking so that the racers all saw me sitting cooking the mid day meal. if they were allowed I am sure some would have enjoyed the fry up and they would have been welcome, as it was I collected a few caps and bidons handed to me amongst the joshing dished out.

Lance, Johann and many others drove past at that time and noted my arrangements but fortunately I was left in peace by the authorities. When I arrived it was a hot,sunny day but turned cloudy and at the end to rain. As I drove north that night I felt like I was driving in Sydney in a torrential storm .

Jesolo was a nice four day start to the Giro , after parking the car I took a loosening up ride scouting the hotels and then riding back into town found team Astana riding out, a quick U turn and I was up with them greeting and chatting for a few minutes before leaving them to up their tempo for the team time trial training. As I left them a mixed group of racers came along heading back into town and again pleasantries were exchanged but I did hear the occasional groan of “skippy, what did we do to deserve him today”!

In town I discovered that a “pink blowup rubber duck” was the local mascot so I collected a couple and over the next days I had several teams add their autographs and then gave it up for display at the tourist office and they were then to pass it to a local “Disabli group” for auction. I told a couple of wheelchair athletes of this so I hope they followed through and people were generous.

Sunday found me on the road after I introduced Angelo Z to my bike “Il Giro” at the depart ,greeted a lot of dignatories and VIPs from previous Giros and tours and then set out on a nice sunny day as some of the teams were driving or riding into the sign on. The day to Trieste passed well enough but the return trip turned into a disaster as the newly installed chain snapped open on the hill heading back. I was riding in a strong group at the time and we were going full bore, these were diletante standard riders and were “chain ganging superbly“. we were passing others without problem but it meant standing on the pedals to gain maximum traction uphill. Well the chain went and so did they, a couple of spectators before a helpful guy with the link tool but a kilo further and it was out again. As I was near the top I reconnected ran the few metres and rode the rest of the way with the loose connection, never exerting the power that I usually exert.

Next morning before the start I found a bike shop who changed the chain and guaranteed me that this was the end of the problem. Too right the bike has done giro, Suisse and tour since without a repeat. Typical of a profi he would take nothing from me but thanks wished me “Bouna Fortuna” and hoped to see me on Tv some more. The next days passed with early starts to position the car ride to the start hobnob with the media and personalities then ride the route and find a way back to the car without expending too much energy. A logistical nightmare but as hard as each day finished I was up the next morning ready to repeat.

Parking the car on Alpi di Suisi I set off and caught up with the Moser/Fondriest group but that was soon splintered and Moser and a few went away and I stayed with Maurizio and waited for some of his guests to reappear. After the finish I headed down the hill collected the car and drove back to the Zillertal over the Brenner. The reason was that the next stage went through the tunnel after Linz into Mittersell, a tunnel closed to bikes as I had been that way before and found hitching did not work this time I was not prepared the risk of a repeat.

Part 2 follows

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