After witnessing the crazy press hordes, photographers shouting at each other, and tales of friends being elbowed in the face in the finish line pit, I decided that the press pass for the Tour de France that allows "behind the scenes" access wasn't really so "behind the scenes" after all. Here's a video from the photographer at Bicycling Magazine where Frank Schleck gets knocked off his bike by the crazed "behind the scenes" media who are scrambling to get a shot of the moment he hugs his brother after loosing the time-trial (and the Tour itself).
I like my freedom to roam and since this freedom is effectively restricted in the press area, I decided to scrap my press pass and big cameras to wonder around outside the lines and shoot 2011 Tour de France w/ an iPhone--as a fan/spectator. My goal was to convey what it's like to be a "normal person" without a press pass at the Tour de France. How close can a fan get to the athletes, what's the vibe, and how fun, wacky, wild is it (fans are much more chill than the media)?
Here's a short gallery photos from the 2011 Tour de France:
2011 Tour de France iPhone Gallery - Images by Gregg Bleakney