Tuesday, November 06, 2007

I Will Gladly Pay You Tuesday...

For a New Team Kit Today: yep, poor loser Giro god Danilo DiLuca--tainted not, oddly enough, by his disturbingly girlish testosterone levels at the Giro, but because he knew a doctor UCI itself let loose in the peloton even after it knew damn well he was associated with doping--has been reduced to pimping pieces of himself to various (and quite pragmatic)Italian companies, hoping to make himself such a cheap date that even a skittish ProTour sponsor'll be willing take on a lowly Grand Tour winner if it'll only have to shell out a few bucks on chamois cream to get him. Oh Danilo. If you can't snag a riding gig for next season--which'd be the most idiotic thing I've ever heard, considering the other one-man-pharmacies still cavorting in the peloton--at least you've got some runway experience, so maybe there's a gig for you over at next season's "America's Most Smartest Model" anyway!

Welcome Mat: and, in vaguely related news, Eki has demurred on the question of whether Savoldelli (who gazzetta reported re-signing already) or Andreas Kloden will be staying with Discovery-I-Mean-Astana, anticipating a tough first year as the team remains stuck with its inherited Vino-picked flotsam and leaving the question for Johan to answer, raising the serious concern that if Danilo DiLuca can't get a new team, a guy who hasn't personally taken the top spot on a Grand Tour podium to date but has managed to associate himself with two of the most disgraced yellow and gold jersey winners in recent history--forget some lame-@$$ support doc--is completely doomed. That, and by my count so far we've got at a minimum Saunier Duval, Rabobank, Barloworld and Slipstream already closing rosters for the season. Hmmm, I suppose T-Mobile's rather unlikely...

Running Man: so, as T-Mobile reconsiders its sponsorship in light of the Sinkewitz debacle despite Bob Stapleton's sweetly naive commitment to purity for the '07 squad, I see that while confessed dope fiend Rolf Aldag's continued association with the team is naturally therefore "in trouble," Aldag still managed to pull off a better recent marathon time than Lance Armstrong, reassuring all his old fans that though Lance "never tested positive for anything," Rolf's efforts at least paid off somewhere. See where that tinkering with celebrity youngsters gets you Lance even with all those pretty test results? Given Aldag's apparent relative lack of income-generating star power (and fine service on behalf of Jan Ullrich), I say allez Rolf!

So Let It Be Written, So Let it Be Done: in Tour news, by the by, I see (courtesy of the inexhaustible folks over at trustbutverify, who even more amazingly seem to understand what they're posting, something far beyond my pathetic capacity) that Floyd Landis has released a whole host of arbitration documents, readying himself and the cycling public for his day with CAS where any victory on his part is sure to come waaaaaaaay after it's too late for him to participate in, much less be in shape for, the 2008 Tour de France. Does it even matter that this whole thing's been a complete farce start to finish at this point? Free Floyd!

League of Justice: meantime, Andrei Kashechkin takes his crusade for human rights to a Belgian court today, outraged at the egregious evil of waterboarding, I mean, a private organization like WADA and UCI testing riders who voluntarily choose to get paid millions of euros voluntarily participating in their sanctioned races. Y'know, coming from a country where workers have about as much right to be free of their employers' requirements as they have not to let the door hit them on @$$ on the way out when they complain about it, this seems completely ridiculous to me, but apparently my colleagues over in the considerably more enlightened EU find this actually plausible, so if Kashechkin ultimately wins his case as well as his inevitable Nobel prize, I think we can all just forget any kind of doping controls entirely til the various state bureaucracies get their act together ten years from now, and simply line up the boys at the start line with their syringe-bearing pals in lab coats and openly juice 'em up from the get-go. Hell, if a few dope-carrying little soigneurs accidentally get stampeded as the race heads out, that's not such a great price to pay for an exciting day on the roads, right?

Quote o' the Week: without question, the peerless Paolo Bettini to the hapless Patrik Sinkewitz, the day after the press claimed Sinkewitz ratted out Bettini as his doping provider but before the boy had time to shriek out his fervent denial: "if it was you that said it then you will be crying." Who knew such a wee little Cricket could give such a big roar?

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