At Keadby Bridge the rain was unrelenting and other than the five breakaway riders, the peloton were just seeing out the wet early phase of the race.
Team Sky had by far the greatest support roadside and were highly visible at the head of the peloton. The very popular Geraint Thomas putting in the majority of the work pulling the peloton along.
Team Sky were protecting race Leader Elia Viviana
Team Sky rider Elia Viviani wearing the race leaders Green Jersey.
The peloton rolling through
Again however the limitations of the iPhone became apparent, despite it having a generally fast lens the high speed photos (taken in burst mode) were disappointing with a lot of motion blur.
On to Wednesday 6th and the race passing through Nottinghamshire to finish in Newark. The excitement in Southwell was building long before the race arrived with some residents making the most of the elusive sunshine to get their (cycling) washing done!
Local children were enjoying their first day at school, hope they don't think everyday is like this.
Once again a break away group had built a significant lead as it blasted through Southwell
and they weren't holding back as they came down the slight downhill past the Minster
The peloton were in hot pursuit and had little time to enjoy the scenery
Today Team Sky's Elia Viviana was wearing the jersey of the points race leader
As a big cycling fan as well as a photographer I decided to stand and watch the stage finish rather than photograph it. I'm so often aware of how we feel the need to photograph these events resulting in our view being that presented by our cameras.
Do we really experience the moment? Does our camera create a barrier between the photographer and the event? Are our resulting memories just a series of photographs rather than the experience of being present at that time?
The break away was caught just outside Newark and the teams with specialist sprinters fought to set up the finish for their riders. Stood on the inside of a slight bend, fifty metres from the finish line the experience of the sprinters rushing past literally inches from us and at speeds of 50-60 mph was extraordinary and one I've experienced a number of times before. I know that watching this spectacle through the viewfinder of my camera diminishes the experience and takes away some of the enjoyment, on this occasion I was happy with my decision.
Once again I'd researched the location of the Team buses but today, armed with my main camera, Canon 5d mkIII, I wanted to capture some of the emotion of the race and planned to get close to the riders as they made their way from finish line to their buses. I waited at a bend I knew the riders would have to come around and took up a low position so I could shoot up into the face of the riders as they passed. Where I possible I called to the riders as they passed, hoping to make eye contact and hopefully extracting some emotion.
Finding the team buses and being there when the riders arrive post finish is a great opportunity for detail and close up shots. You need to work quickly though and be prepared to fight for your position, the teams pack up quickly and there are usually lots of people hoping for selfies & autographs.
It's a great chance to get close to some of the high profile riders as they give their press interviews and warm down.
Look out for unusual, interesting angles and details that can tell a story of the race or the individuals within it.
The bikes racked up on the support cars or lined up on turbo trainers provide geometric interest, repeating patterns and eye catching colours.