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J179 - Tuesday, April 13: Bratislava - Breclav

74.01km – 10H26’
Altitude: 162m  

We haven’t had two consecutive days of rain for a long time.  We have taken out rain gear: the yellow slicker, the frog suits and the umbrellas.  Serge has run 77.5 km in Slovakia, surely the shortest mileage in any country of the European Union during this challenge.

Just as in Hungary, Slovenia, Austria, Slovakia and the Czech Republic, we had to buy a sticker to drive on the toll road.  As far as headlights are concerned, since there was no information at the border as to whether it was necessary to use parking or headlights, we have copied other motorists.  It would simplify matters if there was one rule for the European Union.  I read that in Slovakia headlights are mandatory from October to March or April, so it depends upon the seasons. Here it becomes easier and René and go ahead of the support team to enter the Czech Republic, where we are surprised to see lots of police, everywhere: in the city for parking violations and patrolling the road; and yet there is no border post and the absence of a check point seems to indicate that there was never a border.  A sign at the middle of a bridge indicates a change of country.
For the past 2 to 3 days Serge has been running all bent over toward his left side.  He tells us that because the road has a bump on the side so he can’t put his foot down properly.  But I think he is compensating for a kind of groin pull pain he feels on his right side.  Serge has a goal in mind: clock 13,000 km tomorrow evening, and to do that he has to cover at least 73.6 km per day for 2 days.  Today, mission accomplished and tomorrow Serge should reach 13,000 km at the end of the stage.
Marc, the cameraman, has left.  There are now 7 of us with 3 vehicles, because Adrienne is still with us and Brigitte and Roger are part of the caravan.  Everybody is fine.  We are trying to keep smiling in spite of the incessant rain.

Town : Breclav (République Tchèque)

GPS : N 48.44’56.6° E 016.54’25.5°