Sean looked over his shoulder and saw the pursuit appear over the rise behind him. He looked ahead towards the target and pressed on. His lungs were bursting and he was burning up, the last of the water had gone. He pressed on down the steep dirt track, taking the pain, keeping the rhythm, focusing on his goal.
As the land leveled out he glanced at the pack driving towards him from above. But it was not long to go and he could see the town, the small houses with bright blue shutters glimmering in the baking sun. He knew that the end was close, but how close? He looked round again to see them also on the flat and gaining, coming in like a released elastic band.
Sean rounded the corner and saw the crowd in front of him. He put in a spurt and was just under the banner as the pack devoured him. But he was safe again. The Yellow Jersey was his for another day.