Thursday, July 10, 2008

Higher, Baby/Get Higher, Baby!

It's Super-Besse, Baby!: yep, the GC faves have faced off in the time trial, and with Cadel having kneecapped a significant chunk of the competition, Menchov having recovered some of his dignity after both his directeur sportifs publicly said he sucked, Valverde in the tank, and dear little Sastre far less in the tank than he ought to've been, it's time for the real days of reckoning! By my count, with the best man in this discipline out too as poor Mauricio Soler bails from his busted hand, this is now the third consecutive arena in which this Tour blows, but still, with wretched twerp Ricco' having sworn to the press after his unusually-even-for-him craptastic time trial that he'd never given a thought to the GC at all, and unexpected Giro heights master Pippo Pozzato having (1) formally refused to be Basso's !@#$% at Liquigas next season and (2) thus desperately needing to jack up his asking price, and with Lotto presumably not stupid enough to let any of the faves get away, I'm imagining (LOSING PICK OF THE DAY ALERT) it'll be one of the two for the finale, unless Cunego's still trying to live down the Next Great Grand Tour Rider hype. Or perhaps Jens is bored and, having proven in the Giro's mountain time trial that he can whack just about any terrain into submission, will slap the field silly for the fun of it. Go Pippo--but I'd rather be rooting for Soler today!

The Longo and Winding Road: as most guy cyclists get put out to pasture like used-up draft horses by age 35, and as French riders in particular stage a remarkable renaissance this season, 49 year old road warrior Jeannie Longo has not only snagged her hometown road and time trial championships, but an Olympic gig as well. Right on sister! Meantime, over at the Giro Donne, the climbers finally managed to relieve 3x stage winner Ina Teutenberg of her death grip on the maglia rosa, and frankly, even out of her terrain she manages to make most of her rivals look like first-time driveway Big Wheelers. Speaking of time trials, does anyone else think it blows that new Spanish national time trial champ Luis Leon Sanchez has been denied an Olympic spot in *any* freakin' discipline? Okay, you've got a wealth of choices, and he's been far eclipsed in the gilded-national-angel department by fellow ex-Liberty Seguros kindergartner Alberto Contador, but damn, Spain, what the hell do you have to do to actually get a spot?

Moron Crash of the Tour Award: ignominiously, already won by poor Aurelien Passeron of Saunier Duval, who cracked a vertebra taking out a fan who brilliantly meandered into the course like last year's stupid Golden Retriever, taking Passeron out as of this morning and leaving the lady with a fractured arm. Look, I understand from personal experience elbowing humungous Germans out of the way to shove one of a thousand cameras into Basso's face the reckless enthusiasm that a Grand Tour can engender among its overwrought fans, but might we all agree not stake out a position on the actual road in front of guys going 40 miles an hour so as not to personally kill the objects of our affection?


randie said...

i hate the stupid golden retriever from last year's tour! all my non cycling friends saw footage of it on the news and said "oh the poor dog". i put them straight let me tell you! great post as usual rj, keep 'em coming.

Anonymous said...

Hey Junkie -

What will you say about the TDF 2008 first suspected doper? Do you think it's a Disco conspiracy (you know people love conspiracies and Beltran was a Disco)? Who are the other 9 cyclists with out of whack values and will we hear more in the coming days? Will Liquigas leave the Tour (a la Astana last year?).