Monday, June 25, 2007

Things that Make You Go Hmm...and, the Tour Teams

Nice Timing!: So, Gazzetta dello Sport is just reporting that Gilberto Simoni has become the first Italian to sign UCI's ludicrous antidoping pledge--given the known annoyance of your countrymen, watch your back from now on, Gibo!--totally coincidentally I'm sure right as the news broke that he, DiLuca, Ricco' and Mazzoleni have freakish testosterone irregularities, which also rather begs the question of how UCI actually expects to get a year's salary out Simoni if he's only busted once he quits the ProTour later this season and heads off to the hills on his mountain bike. Between that and blowing his Saunier Duval bucks on an attorney to break that meaningless promise, good luck getting any money out of him UCI! Meantime, I remain deeply fond of Simoni, not only because it's theoretically possible he actually hasn't cheated (shut up! is too), but because even if he did, he both verbally abused Ivan Basso in the face of massive swooning fan madness despite the serious threat to his life and limb, and kicked ass at this year's Giro, thereby putting him up on, say, Roberto Heras' quieter, but equally beloved, pedestal. Do what you gotta do to appease these two-faced moronothons over at UCI, Gilberto--we love you anyway!

Le Teams, Le Tour: so, I'm sorting out my faves for the Tour, assuming half of them aren't gone next week (and I'm frankly assuming the Tour won't have the !@#$s to do it), and my thoughts have lightly turned from the individual boys to the teams. Who's the one to beat? Assuming for the moment that Astana, objectively the best ship in the fleet, will indeed sink under the weight of its Battle of the Egos, for my money, it's still CSC, despite the unfortunate fact that possibly alone among the ProTour their riders' blood profiles are apparently all within normal human parameters (particularly given that dear Sastre's Tour de Suisse time trial wasn't the hideous disaster it might've been), because T-Mobile's still reeling from their damn stupid, if morally superior, jettisoning of Jan Ullrich and Andreas Kloden, Caisse d'Epargne's been too busy trying to rein in presumptive '06 king (sorry, Floyd--I do still think it *should* be you) Oscar Pereiro's cycle of celebration and Tour-stolen misery to help Valverde fend off the press vultures, Cunego's still a bit sleepy from the Giro, Saunier Duval can't afford to put any GC pressure on psychologically fragile flower we love Iban Mayo, the sprint teams are universally useless for anything else, and Discovery's been smacked by Lance's diss and Ivan Basso's loss (redeemed leader Levi likely excepted, despite the endless good sport that he is) into total demoralized submission. Pull it together Thor, and give me a reason to at least watch the flats, and please, someone from Euskaltel keep me guessing in the mountains!

Amuse Bouche of the Day: was anyone else cracking up when Oscar Sevilla won in Relax colors over at Ruta del Sud, only to be egregiously dope-slapped by the petty whining of the other riders that they had lost to someone 'tainted' by Op Puerto? Who the hell else do you think you're gonna be riding with in two weeks, you babies, and how many of you wah-wahing hypocrites are on the damn list yourself if UCI would only bestir themselves to read it?

Finally: I must say my heart rather goes out to fellow race fanatics like racer blue squirrel, who've sworn, from sheer love of the sport, not to mention doping ever again. (Much as I admire it, I cannot emulate it, sworn to both sleaze and glory as I am.) Hell, are any pro cycling newbies even aware the Tour de France is a bike race, vs. a series of pit stops for dope-pumped blood transfusions in a series of attractive French villages?

And a Post-Finally "You Suck!": to the German cycling fed for booting we love Erik Zabel out of the Worlds under pressure by some wanky Ministry of Total Unmitigated Toolishness, on the grounds that he, alone among the German riders (the rest of whom, as we know, are busy doping right n...oh, forget it, why ask for trouble?), doped for a week 10 freakin' years ago. Let's face it guys, Zabel's the *least* of your problems--can we land on Planet Reality here and aim for some targets really worth taking out?

1 comment:

blue squirrel said...

you know it, i know it, we all know what is going to happen come sunday afternoon, frankfurt time, thats right, zabel will be crowned german RR champ and than, as the news line says today, will NOT be picked for the german worlds team or olympic team in '08.
go zabel.....