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Tour de Lead Graffiti [ 2011 ] 2012 | 2013 | 2014 | 2015 

 Next story :  Stage 9

Next story : Stage 9


TdLG / 2011 : Stage 3
"Nothing and then all hell broke loose!"

Several people who are scheduled to print with us have asked, "How do you pick a moment." Well, most of the times it just drops out of the sky.

Four of us were sitting watching the live TV feed on what is arguably the flattest stage of the tour. Nothing was happening. No crashes. A four-man breakaway that was slowly being caught up. There had been another episode of someone jumping out in front of the peleton and meeting up with his family, but that was only going to get a heart along the side of the poster.

But the people who laid out the tour had done a kind of strange thing, in that over a 218 km stage, the point where the sprinters challenge each other for intermediate points was only 25 km from the finish. This essentially created two back-to-back races..

About 15 km from the intermediate sprint, Ben Kiel, a type designer from House Industries, looked over at Ray and said, "Waiting for the sprint." We all knew immediately, that was the subject of the poster. Simple as that. A casual, well placed statement.

Five km after that the peloton was barreling along and all of a sudden, again completely across a wide road, people are strewn everywhere. Maybe two dozen cyclists were lying in the road and ditches. Everyone behind was blocked from continuing and those in front of the crash were tearing toward the sprint point. The fastest cyclists around the crash lost at least a minute and wouldn't catch back up to the main group. Bradley Wiggins, currently in 6th place was out of the race. Chris Horner in13th place was out. Tom Boonen was out. Levi Leipheimer, one of our favorites, lost another 3 minutes and is essentially out of the running.

Click here to see other posters focused on crashes.

And winning his 17th stage of the Tour de France was the Manx Missile, Mark Cavendish, clearly the fastest man alive on a bike for a short distance and also on the team of the best lead-out group anywhere on the planet.

So, there's the poster. Waiting, crash, missile base. You see it above in ink on paper.

Joining with us for the day was Ben Kiel, a type designer for House Industries who often uses our shop, and his brother Andy.