US: 2010 Tour de France got underway on July 3rd and up to July 25th, the world’s best riders will battle it out for the greatest honour in cycling, to be the winner of the Tour de France. While a lot of people will be camping out and following the tour on site, Bing Maps and Google Earth have also joined them in their own typical style.
Bing Maps has put together an app full of data on each of the 21 stages. The app, built with Silverlight, is a smart tool for anyone wanting to check out future stages or get more contexts for the ones underway. Besides the obvious courses for all stages, the app features an elevation and distance graph to give its users an idea of the type of climbs the riders will encounter.
There is also weather information, ten days ahead, and it looks like this year the riders will experience some rather sunny and pleasant conditions. The app provides information on the current standings and the rankings for each completed stage. And the tool is useful to those following the tour on the spot as it features some of the more interesting sections like sprints and hill climbs.
Fans of the sport have already created KML files for Google Earth of the complete Tour de France. Viewing all the stages in three dimensions really underlines the difficult terrain the riders encounter in some of the stages especially, the ones in the Alps. One can download a KML file with all the stages created by Thomas Vergouwen from here.
If you’re the type of fan that can’t get enough of stats and numbers, you’ll love the page Google set up for the HTC Columbia team. The team’s eight riders are being tracked in real-time and the interesting part is that everyone in the world can keep up with their progress through the dedicated Google page. Some of the stats are obvious, the rider’s location is plotted in near real time on Google Maps, so you can keep an eye on his progress, and you can also check out the speed at which he’s travelling.
But it goes deeper than this, when users select an individual rider they will be able to see his power output, his cadence and even his heart rate.