The 2012 Tour de France will forever be remembered as the year of the British! It's a little overwhelming just how dominate the Brits were at this years tour.
Not only did Bradley Wiggins become the first British rider ever to win the Yellow Jersey, his countryman Chris Froome took second. They both ride for a British team (Sky) and the current World Champion, Mark Cavendish (also on Team Sky), won the final stage on the Champs-Elysees.
Along the road to Paris, the Brits and Team Sky completely dominated the tour. Not since the hey day of Armstrong's seven year run have we seen a team so completely take over the tour. Armstrong's Discovery/Postal teams controlled the race and delivered Lance to Paris in yellow, but they never took the top two spots and completely crushed all challengers in the mountains as Sky did. And in addition to that, Cavendish won three stages as well!
There were some other great stories in the tour. Thomas Veckler again surprised everyone, including himself with a brilliant tour. After last year riding in the yellow jersey for 10 days and finishing 4th overall, it seemed hard to follow up with something as inspiring. This year he did it by winning two stages and taking the Poka-Dot jersey as best climber. I don't think anyone tapped Veckler as the Poka-Dot winner!
And then we have the next generation. Peter Sagan and Tejay Van Garderen. Sagan, riding his first tour, crushed everyone in the Green Jersey competition. He ended up winning the jersey by over 140 points, a gigantic margin! All that and he is only 23 years old! How many green jerseys can this guy win? Van Garderen is the next big thing from the US. Hailing from Tacoma, WA, he looks set to make a run at the yellow jersey in the coming years. He ended up wining the White Jersey (best placed rider under 25yrs) by over 6 minutes. He finished 5th overall and although a long way behind Wiggins, he showed that he has the talent and the commitment to ride for yellow.