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Mountain Kings: Agony and Euphoria on the Peaks of the Tour De France Paperback – 15 May 2013

4.0 out of 5 stars 28 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Paperback: 256 pages
  • Publisher: Punk Publishing Ltd; 1st Edition edition (15 May 2013)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1906889597
  • ISBN-13: 978-1906889593
  • Product Dimensions: 23.7 x 1.7 x 17.3 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (28 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 458,270 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description

About the Author

Author Giles Belbin is a keen road cyclist. Through his total passion for the sport, he has carved out a part-time career as a cycling journalist writing for cycling website dailypeloton.com and cult cycling magazine boneshaker, as well as publishing and editing The Cycling Post. Giles was also part of the journalistic team covering the cycling events at the London 2012 Olympic Games.


Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By BRIAN PLAYFAIR TOP 1000 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on 4 Aug. 2013
Format: Paperback Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
Mountain Kings by Giles Belbin. This is a book for all fans of the Tour de France and especially those who love the mountain stages. It is set out in chapters featuring alternately 25 of the great climbs the Tour uses and profiles of 23 of the riders who have made their names on their slopes.

The Mountains - each chapter has all the relevant details of it's size, length and gradient and when it had been used in the Tour however the beauty of the book is that the author rides them himself giving vivid descriptions of each part of the climb and what it meant to him, the fear, the agony and all interwoven with tales of the great historical battles that have taken place over the years between the famous tour climbers. It is exiting and compelling reading.
There are many beautiful photographs which show the reader what each climb is like and the magnificent scenery most of which is lost when watching the Tour on TV. This helps to put you there and perhaps gives you an idea of the pain. The author features 25 of the famous climbs - magical names that alone paint their own pictures - Col D'Aspin, Peyresourde, Marie-Blanque, The Tourmalet, Alp D'Huez, Col De La Madeleine, Galibier and of course the notorious Ventoux. In all 25 featured mountains each with their own wonderful stories.

The Riders - features 23 profiles of the great climbers past and present with their own stories of how they won and lost on the mountains. Again magical names to conjure great memories of their exploits - Luis Ocana, Eddy Merckx, Fignon, Anquetil, Coppi and Bobbet, Indurain, Pantani, Hinault, Robert Miller, Charlie Gaul, Wiggins and perhaps the greatest of them all - the great Bahamontes.

The basic description says that this is a "paperback" but that is very misleading.
Read more ›
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Format: Paperback Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
I've been watching and reading about the Tour De France since the early 70's. Most of you probably weren't born then. Back then, I was (mostly) reading about Eddy Merckx (whom I once met) and occasionally watching highlights on grandstand (ask you parents - or grandparents.) Now I can watch most stages live on TV, but still love books like this.

If you're a fan of the Tour, then this is a great little book covering the famous climbs and some of the greats who have made the tour great by riding those climbs. You're probably going to buy this anyway. You should. If you're wondering why some of us are so keen of the Tour, then buy this book and find out. While watching Cavendish win sprints in Paris is exciting, it's the mountains that really make the race.

Each chapter covers one of the great climbs. Included is a gradient map, showing the slope of each mountain. This is a nice little detail, often missed in books of this sort - they often just show a map of the route. Each of these mountains has been ridden by the author and includes his experience of the climb.

After the history of the climb, you get a chapter on one of the heroes of the climb, all the way from the first tour to some of the truly great climbers in tour history.

I would love to ride some of these mountain routes, but my ability to climb is nearly non-existent (too many knee injuries.) Still, the descents would be fun!

So a nice read with some excellent photographs and nicely researched histories. I only wished I had the hardback.
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Format: Paperback Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
A fantastic book that will appeal to new fans of the Tour de France looking to learn a bit more about the cycling greats, and a brilliant tome for reminiscing on past masters who've been tour fans for a while.

Nicely written and containing some iconic images (many of which convey the pain these guys went through) this book also lists the great climbs of the tour, from the saddle.

Armchair enthusiasts and amateur cyclists will both enjoy this book.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This is a great book. Giles Belbin shares his insightful knowledge of the Tour de France mixed with personal experience over the toughest mountains. A well researched history of the Tour's biggest battles, from the unthinkable first event to the modern day circus, is written so you feel part of it. As Giles describes his own adventures climbing the toughest 25 mountains it inspires you to get out and ride. I would highly recommend this book.
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Format: Paperback
Ive read a number of Tour history books - Mountain Kings does a great job of telling the tales of the heros of the tour with great detail.
This book brings a refreshing twist with Giles Belbin's documentation of riding these famous peaks alongside the stories of famous races.
His honest account makes a refreshing contrast to the epic tails of tour glory. If you fancy riding any of the Cols yourself this book is a must! Mountain Kings is a great all-rounder!
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Another one of those over-produced books printed on chalk-coated paper that is so heavy I need a forklift truck to move the book. But the content rescues it. Quite unnecessary stuff really but for an old aficionado like me ......well, I never turn 'em down.
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Format: Paperback
This is one of my favourite cycling books. The author offers a compelling personal account of the tours many climbs and provides this with stunning pictures, statistics and the fascinating history of the tour. Easy to read and the type of book that makes you go for a ride! If your a fan of the worlds greatest road race, I recommend you buy this book.
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