November 24, 2009
The thankless job of the domestique
The fact that cycling is a team sport isn’t all that obvious to the casual observer. Of course, only one person can cross the finish line first at the end of a race, but the work that his team mates have carried out throughout the race is crucial in affording their team leader the opportunity of victory. A domestique is expected to drop back to the team car and fetch water bottles, to keep tempo at the front of a group, to chase down breakaways and perhaps most importantly of all, to shelter the team leader from the wind.