#FairlyGroupFriday returns for the Tour de France. We launched the Fan Q&A series during the Giro d’Italia. You can catch up here if you missed them. Every week we’ll send out a call for questions on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram. We cherry-pick our favorites for the Cannondale-Drapac Tour team to answer.
You delivered this week – both in terms of quantity and quality – too many gems for us to pack into this week. If you don’t see your question featured this week, we may be sitting on it for next week or the week after…you guys impressed us this round!
1. What’s in your suitcase for a three-week race? Anything special that only you have?
Paddy Bevin: Nope, nothing special. It’s a garden variety Grand Tour suitcase – enough kit, very little that doesn’t say New Balance, Cannondale or Drapac. Two summer kits. Two aero kits. Three race suits. Skinsuits. And a decent range of Trigger Point products. Head phones. Kindle. That’s it.
Alberto Bettiol: I always bring swim trunks. You never know when you can be somewhere you can swim. I also bring two photos and a secret present from my girlfriend.
Simon Clarke: Electric Moka Coffee Machine. It’s a must to make sure I consistently have good coffee every morning. We stay in a variety of hotels over the course of three weeks, so it’s important to try to keep what you hold important as consistent as possible. It’s the same reason I have a pillow and a stretching mat.
Rigoberto Uran: Lots of mouthwash.
[No joke. He went into the bathroom to show us his supply. Strangely missing? Hair product of any kind.]
Nate Brown: Chocolate chip cookies. Sometimes Lawson’s wife Chelsey makes them for me. This time it was my girlfriend Annie. I haven’t tried them yet.
Pierre Rolland: My recovery boots and some pictures of my family.
Taylor Phinney: Three Murakami books
Andrew Talansky: The basics. Everything required for three weeks of racing. The particulars – I always travel with my coffee: a nice hand grinder, beans, cone filter. I travel with my own little kettle, so I’m not dependent on the hotel having water. That’s my most particular thing. Sometime I travel with soap because I like to have the same consistency of soap. The hotel we’re at now is fine, but sometimes you get to tiny hotels in the middle of nowhere France and it’s slim pickings. Sandals. I never go anywhere without my sandals.
Dylan van Baarle: There’s nothing here that I don’t bring to all races but a little bit more of everything – more kit, more shirts, more of everything from the team.
2. Let’s talk Tour roommates. Who’s your roommate? What’s the best/worst thing about your rooming together?
Bevin: I’m with Simon Clarke. The best part is that he’s Australian, so he’s almost a Kiwi brother. No. Seriously, he’s experienced, punctual and keeps his stuff in his spot. The worst? I don’t know. This isn’t the worst but it might be the most interesting. He has a lot of gadgets. A lot. He loves a good gadget.
Bettiol: I’m with Rigo, and the best part is that he’s from Colombia, from the Latin part of the world. We more or less have the same views and the same way of speaking. He can speak Italian. I can speak Spanish. We find each other well. The worst, well not the worst, but something I can say is that he is always on the phone – with his girlfriend, his manager, with his factory in Colombia. There are a lot of phone calls.
Clarke: I haven’t roomed with Paddy much. You better ask me again at the end of the Tour.
Uran: Alberto sleeps well. He’s not awake in the night. It’s perfect for me. I don’t know the worst yet. It’s the second time I’m with him only. Maybe ask me in Paris.
Brown: There isn’t a worst part to rooming with Andrew. He’s a great roommate. We get along really well. I get along with all roommates actually. I roomed with Andrew at the Vuelta in 2014. We had a great time.
Rolland: I have no roommate. I’m the one who is alone because it’s really important that I have the same routine every day, and my routine is different than my teammates in the Tour. It’s the opposite team than in the Giro. I go to bed really early. I can share a room with Formolo. He goes to bed early, too. If I lose one hour of sleep every day, after three weeks at the Tour, that’s a whole day.
Phinney: The best part of rooming with Dylan is that we agree on most things. We agree on the importance of not talking about bike racing all the time so we can disconnect from the bubble. The worst part is that he’s more attractive that I am. If it were ever to come to a situation where there were two of us and one girl, that girl would choose Dylan. That’s why I’m reading Murakami, so I can captivate the mind.
Talansky: Nate is great. He’s one of the most easy-going, least stressed people I’ve had the pleasure of racing or rooming with. He’s one of the few people I’ve roomed with at a Grand Tour. For Grand Tours, I usually like to be alone, but for this, I’m happy to be with Nate. He’s probably one of the few people that can deal with me for a month, and I like being around him, too.
Van Baarle: Taylor is relaxed. That’s really nice. He’s easy-going, and I’m easy-going. I think we’re on the same wave-lengths.
3. If you could be a professional athlete in any other sport, which sport would it be?
Bevin: As a kid, probably motocross. Now it would be an F1 rider. Growing up it was the dirt bikes.
Bettiol: Probably soccer
Uran: Another sport? It’s difficult. For me, only cycling.
Talansky: Surfing. But qualified not contest.
Van Baarle: Football. I mean European football. Soccer. It’s a little too easy, no? Maybe Formula 1 or Moto GP. I know I’m not as good at that as I think I am. I like to watch it, but I have no clue what’s really going on. I can drive my car really fast though.
4. Who on this Tour team would win a donut eating competition?
Bevin: I need to spend more time with the Tour team to answer this one. I don’t know yet.
Bettiol: Like Homer Simpson? Probably me. Maybe Dylan. Me and Dylan could be very close.
Clarke: John Murray (#GreenArgyle soigneur)
Uran: Nigel [Mitchell] (#GreenArgyle head of nutrition)
Rolland: Maybe me.
Phinney: Nobody really eats much anymore. Maybe Nate Brown is a sleeper for a donut eating contest.
Talansky: I feel like I would do pretty well. I really like donuts.
Van Baarle: I want to say myself. I think I can eat a lot of donuts. You think Taylor because he’s big, but Nate, I think he’s a secret talent there.
5. What is your favorite pace-race meal?
Bettiol: My nutritionist recommends rice with something, but in California we ate burritos, and I like that.
Clarke: White rice with a can of tuna and some balsamic glaze
Uran: Omelets – with only ham
Brown: Pasta. Sean’s* pasta. [ We don’t eat it a ton during races, but when he makes it, it’s amazing.
Rolland: I really like this omelet Sean makes with eggs and rice and cheese and ham. He mixes everything and puts in one cake. It’s really good, really odd but really good.
Phinney: Honestly a really nice well-cooked, and by well-cooked, I mean al dente, Italian pasta. I’m so hungry at the end of the race, I can eat anything. Fresh rice and eggs are pretty good. Maybe a Japanese omlet. Actually, no. Chicken fried rice. But really fresh. Or a Japanese omelet with rice. Yeah, that would be wicked.
Talansky: Sean makes a lot of good stuff, so this one is hard. I love when there’s bruschetta to start. I like a good tartare, whether it’s tuna or beef. I’m going to request spaghetti and meatballs at some point, so maybe that.
Van Baarle: I like to eat a nice hamburger at the end of a really, really hard race – like when we make it to Paris. During the race, no hamburgers. I don’t like rice, but I like to eat rice. And I like museli.
**Sean is Sean Fowler, the Cannondale-Drapac head chef.