Climbs and PunishmentAfter almost a decade of reporting on the exploits of the pro peloton, raconteur Felix Lowe takes to the saddle and sets out to conquer the road from Barcelona to Rome. Powered by local delicacies, painkillers and imaginary fans, Lowe pedals his way through three countries and over three mountain ranges, taking in some of the sport’s most fabled climbs. Following in the tracks of the world’s greatest wheelmen, he puts professional cycling’s three major stage races – the Tour de France, Vuelta a Espana and Giro d’Italia – under the microscope, whilst capturing the potent mix of madness, humour and human spirit thatClimbs and Punishment fuels stage winners and pedal spinners alike. Tracing the footsteps of the celebrated Carthaginian general Hannibal, who led his own pachyderm peloton of thirty-seven elephants over the Alps and all the way to the gates of Rome, Lowe’s epic quest pays homage to the sport, examines the psychology of both the crazed amateur and the pedalling pro, and delves into the awesome march of a military genius who almost brought the Roman Empire to its knees.

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