THE stunning Dordogne countryside was the backdrop to stage 10 of this year's le Tour as television viewers from around the world saw the best of this corner of France.
The race itself saw German Marcel Kittel win the stage as he sprinted over the line for his fourth stage win, while Chris Froome retained the yellow jersey, but it was the Dordogne's many chateaux, its river and deep wooded hillsides that stared.
Crowds lined the 178km route from Périgueux to Bergerac, with particular mention of the thousands cheering on the cyclists up the slope out of Le Buisson.
For fans watching on the television the helicopter camera crew showed them the Dordogne valley with Dômme in the foreground, La Roque Gageac proved a popular stop and all the chateaux in the region seemed to feature.
Out on the road, and from our own vantage point near Urval close to the river Dordogne, people waved and cheered as the publicity caravan, including a motorised madeleine, sped past before the cyclists themselves in a flash of spinning wheels and blurred Lycra.
Despite the race only really taking off in the last couple of kilometres, the many thousands along the route are sure to have enjoyed the day, chatted and met new friends, whilst lapping up the growing excitement of le Tour's approach - I know I did.
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