Narrow twisty roads are great terrain for breakaways to stick. Out of sight, out of mind. The way you ride over the terrain can also make your breakaway more effective. As a general rule, ride the hills and go fast on the flats. Know the wind direction in relation to how the course finishes. This will also help you judge your effort. I learned from him how to ride a breakaway, he would attack in the beginning and get a gap then sit up and let the teams work at the front to bring him back.
The teams would take minutes out of his lead and then let off because they were bringing him back too fast. However, the Italians become irked when Dave is able to keep up with them. One of them jams a tire pump in Dave's wheel, causing him to crash, which leaves him disillusioned.
He subsequently confesses his deception to Katherine, who is heartbroken. Dave's friends persuade him to join them in forming a cycling team for the Little Dave's parents provide T-shirts with the name "Cutters" on them. Ray privately tells his son how, when he was a young stonecutter, he was proud to help provide the material to construct the university, yet he never felt comfortable on campus. Later, Dave runs into Katherine, who is leaving for a job in Chicago; they patch things up.
Dave is so much better than the other competitors in the Little that, while the college teams switch cyclists every few laps, he rides without a break and builds up a big lead. However, he is injured in a crash and has to stop.
After some hesitation, Moocher, Cyril, and Mike take turns pedaling, but soon the Cutters' lead vanishes. Finally Dave has them tape his feet to the pedals and starts to make up lost ground; he overtakes Rod, the current rider for the favored fraternity team, on the last lap and wins.
Ray is proud of his son's accomplishment and takes to riding a bicycle himself. Dave later enrolls at the university, where he meets a pretty French student. Soon, he is extolling to her the virtues of the Tour de France and French cyclists. The Little bicycle race that forms the centerpiece of the plot is a real race held annually at Indiana University. A reenactment of the race was staged for the film in the "old" Memorial Stadium on the IU campus, which was demolished in , four years after Breaking Away was shot.
The team is based on the Phi Kappa Psi Little champions, which featured legendary rider and Italian enthusiast Dave Blase , who provided screenwriter and fellow Phi Kappa Psi team member Steve Tesich the inspiration for the main character in the movie. Blase himself appears in the movie as the race announcer. The scenes filmed in and around Bloomington, Indiana,  were filmed during the summer of Many of the scenes in the movie were filmed on the Indiana University campus; glimpses of the Indiana Memorial Union are in the background of Dave's ride through campus.
Dave Stoller's house in the film is located at the corner of S. Lincoln St. Dodds St. Other scenes were filmed outside the Delta Delta Delta sorority house E. Two other scenes were filmed on W. Madison the old railroad tracks have since been removed. A scene in which Dave runs a red light in front of his father was filmed at the southwest corner of the Monroe County Courthouse, at the intersection of College St.
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