Saturday, May 12, 2007

Il Grande Giro, Baby!

The Hosed: T "Despite the Fact that Our Riders Doctors and DSs All Keep Getting Busted, We're Morally Superior to You" Mobile, as high-GC-placement-hope (though not actually podium contender) Sergeui Gonchar gets pulled for unusual--but clearly not doping-related, avers the team--blood readings at Liege-Bastogne-Liege and Romandie. That sure explains the "bad cold" he's been suffering from the last week! And, as usual perpetual sad-sack wannabes Unibet, whose court challenge to force their participation in the Giro was helpfully met by Milan officials promising they'd issue a ruling 9 days after they miss the start line. If that sort of considered-yet-timely deliberation isn't justice in action, I'm hard pressed to know what is. We'll let you know if you win your death-sentence appeal a week after you fry, we're sure you'll feel posthumously vindicated! Surprisingly, last but not least among the most yanked it's team time trial specialists CSC and Discovery, who freely admit they're scared as hell by today's hilly windy course, as half the teams abandon their time-trial bikes for fear of getting knocked over with the lack of control and the other half, led by predictably unsympathetic (and crap time-trialist) Robbie "the Ego" McEwen, helpfully opining that if you don't suck, it ought not to be a problem, like for him. Anyone else hoping Petacchi and Hushovd absolutely (though honestly are unlikely to) crush his irritating @#$ in every single sprint?

The High: well, still everyone, according to the tirelessly self-promoting incompetents at the French lab eager to do anything to project a positive image ahead of the Landis hearing, noting that due to the mass unwillingness to test for exogenous testosterone (certainly not WADA, UCI, or the teams' fault, natch) half the post-purge peloton is still stoked. And the other half? According to the ever-philosophical Paolo Bettini, with Basso and Scarponi blowing everyone's cover and Fuentes off the market, they're now manipulating their blood at a new bank in Valencia--which makes it even more entertaining that the Italian riders are threatening to boycott the Vuelta as the dirty Spaniards continue to ride and win races with dope-fueled impunity, as the poor and pure Italians muddle along with nothing more powerful at the start gate than a pre-race cappucino. Riiiiiiight!

Where in the World is Iban Mayo?: hooray! still in unpredictable form, but back in action to support Gilberto Simoni in the mountains, and--please, Iban, if for no other reason that it's about time to make the dope-slapping press grovel at your altar--game to try a stage. Vai Iban!

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