Monday, November 23, 2009

Thank You, World o' Cycling!

Yes, folks, as we celebrate this fourth Thursday in November the Native Americans' generous rescue of the Pilgrims from starvation, and the Pilgrims' even more generous thank-you of population-decimating pestilence and racist genocide, by gorging ourselves into L-tryptophan stupors, engaging in internecine warfare with those wingnut relatives we otherwise manage to avoid all year, watching the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade in the fervent if secret hope that the Spongebob Squarepants balloon breaks free of its tethers and squashes half of Fifth Avenue, and lumping on the couch while giant overpaid neckless lunkheads pound each other into Astroturf, it's time we here at racejunkie give sincere and heartfelt thanks for the many wonderful things cycling has brought to us all this year, namely:

1. Alexander Vinokourov. Crazed? Yep. Disreputable? Hell yeah! But one thing you can always count on with Vino, besides his having a permanent IV port installed in his !@#, is--from his total lack of remorse, to his forcible restraint of dimmer child Alberto Contador--entertainment. Come on, was it half so much fun when that wah-wah snivel-baby David Millar came back from *his* doping ban?

2. The Return of Lance Armstrong. No, I'm serious: because what else was there for the media to cover at the Tour de France this year except BEN !@#$ING STILLER SITTING ON LANCE'S BIKE FOR TEN SECONDS? I'm grateful. Truly. Damn, and we wonder why the French are so whiny?

3. Stuey O'Grady and Jens Voigt. Run 'em over with buses, toss 'em off a mountainside, immolate 'em with a blowtorch and stampede 'em with wildebeests--you *know* these boys are gonna bounce right back and, what's more, still finish the stage. Yap, I snapped my collarbone, yap--come back to us when you've *really* hurt yerself, ya weenie!

4. Holy crap we love Samuel Sanchez is still the Olympic gold medalist!

5. Alberto Contador. Those long-lashed, doe-like eyes. That flashing smile. And such a matchless sense of entitlement melded with such an overweening lack of common sense as to make one swoon. Oh, Alberto, make that pistol-shot gesture just one more time, for me!

6. My Faithful Reader(s). Who else would slag me in all-caps all July for being a talentless Lance-ignorant know-nothing moron, generally excoriate me as a humor-impaired dirt-dumb twit, forgive my indefensible indulgence of (wholly innocent and egregiously railroaded) dopers I favor, provoke such lively debate over tactics and team rosters, or gush so eloquently over certain monster-talented and totally coincidentally man-candian sprinters? Haters (and I do treasure you), thy name is Anonymous!

7. The Return of the Disgraced Italians. Because without Di Luca, Ricco', and Sella in the peloton, how else are you gonna get through some boring-ass 6-hour mountain stage in 1.5 hours flat?

8. Tom Boonen. His DS said go to rehab, and he said yes, yes, yes. God love 'im, the boy hasn't drunk himself into a blackout snorted a pound of coke publicly hoed on his girlfriend and wrapped his Lamborghini around a road sign in months. We're all *so* proud of you, Tom!

9. Cav. Oh, those teeth. Those quads. That attitude. And of course, the fact that Thor Hushovd can *still* crush his sorry rump in a sprint. Just keep on braggin', honey!

10. Last but Not Least, Phil Liggett and Paul Sherwen. Gods. Just gods. On your knees before them, peon!

Well, them's the big ones for me, folks--I'm sure for all of us this precious holiday season, the list o' gratitude towards this glorious cesspool of a soap-opera-on-wheels goes on and on. Happy Thanksgiving to all--and don't forget the 2010 Tour when you're breakin' that wishbone!

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Back Away From the 'Skank, Son!

Don't Do It,Floyd!: okay, the thought of you on some half-!@#$% Continental squad that's gonna be clawing desperately at the barriers just outside the sign-in areas at any European race worth watching while the paranoiac race organizers beat your hands off the things with bike pumps makes me feel a little unwell. And prospect of seeing you under the thumb of that poseur clotheshorse publicity slut-weasel Michael Ball at Rock Racing makes me downright queasy. But the possibility of you going to Levi'n'Klodi !@#$%-Slapped Chamois-Washer Bike-Cleat-Licker Purgatory in the service of the One at RadioSkank makes me actively want to yack. Don't do it Floyd--what's the point of going back to Europe if Armstrong's just gonna make you his towel boy? Aw, come on Vaughters, take a chance--I know they hate 'im and they'll be pissed if you hire 'im, but it's not like the French hold a grudge against the *teams*, right--how the hell else would, say, Rabobank, or 90% of the rest of those enabler clowns still be in there year after year?

Don't Do It, Ivan!: okay, I'll cop to it: after a whole season watching St. Ivan of Varese not win, my disgust over his earlier omnipresent smirk-o-superiority and relentless smarmy image rehab blitzkrieg is starting to be replaced with a sneaking, if still highly tenuous, suspicion that he might not actually be on back on the juice. At the moment. In which case, the comely comeback boy is in serious danger of engendering my sympathy--tho' of course, a groveling, weeping prostration of a public apology to the great Gilberto Simoni would go a long way towards helping this. So in the interest of optimism, fairness, and a faith which will surely be viciously nut-kneed out of existence *again*, I humbly plead, don't do it Ivan--stay the hell away from that arrogant jailbait's entreaties to join him at Astana in 2011! Why? First, if you want to win the Tour, as you've only just said you do, and you go with Alberto, that's *over*--the babe's made it perfectly clear that he's only taken the Giro and Vuelta as crap consolation prizes on the path to !@#-snapping Armstrong with his next (6) maillot jaune(s) in Paris. Second, all due respect to the child, but you really think that even if you agree to go for another Giro or Vuelta instead in exchange for your service at the Tour, he won't hesitate to decimate your own domestique firepower for his own princely needs? Ya can't spend that much time with Armstrong and not learn to treat your teammates like serfs, honey! Third, given Franco of the Euromullet's results last year, and his stated ambition to take the Tour himself, if you don't beat down Pellizotti within the first few races this year, you can count yourself out of Liquigas as well, so you might as well scratch both these gigs off your list. don't look like Contador's going to Quick Step...or maybe you can just bide your time and Lance'll order Johan Bruyneel to take you back when the his legs finally give out at RadioSkank?

Do It, Iban!: First, shut the hell up. I'm still in deep denial and I have every intention, no matter how many opiates it takes, of staying that way. But it does bring me great pleasure to note that the beautiful Vuelta may be returning to the Basque country for the first time in many years. What does this have to do with we love Iban Mayo, last reported to be starting a restaurant or something, you don't care enough to ask? Because it's the perfect opportunity for our jacked-over hero (shut up! is too!) to make a body-crushing Hinaultesque flying tackle on to every witch-hunting bottom-suckin' Z-sample-scrounging UCI official there (all two pounds of him, but I digress) and pound their weasel indiscriminate iron-maiden-wielding Inquisition !@#es into the pavement 'til they're unrecognizable blubbering pulp. Go Iban--heck, you're off the bike, a little upper-body bulking-up at the ol' boxing ring between now and next September can't hurt!

Friday, November 06, 2009

My Fantasy Team Astana Press Conference (Part Deux!)

Alberto Contador: Good morning. I'm here today to formally announce that my honor, dignity and integrity do have an actual exact price tag, and it's 12 million bucks, an out clause letting me bail if any of those incompetent Kazakhs !@#$ up their doping regime, and Alexander Vinokourov's personal guarantee that he won't show up in July and hog all the press coverage that rightly, and alone, belongs to me. HEY, WHAT'RE YOU LOOKIN' AT HIM FOR? DIDN'T I JUST TELL YOU ALL THE PRESS COVERAGE BELONGS TO ME? Anyway. First, I'd like to thank my moronothon brother and my other dimwit handlers for getting me into this !@#$ing inescapable nightmare, and, as a token of my affection, hereby put a bounty on their heads of one full season's salary for riding in this miserable gulag. Second, I'd like to note my violent hatred of Vino for all eternity for the egregious crimes of honoring a contract I entered into knowingly and voluntarily with someone else entirely and then modifying it completely in my favor, hiring a bunch of major talents at incredibly monstrous expense for the sole purpose of providing me total unquestioning superior service, and paying me more money than most of Europe's GDP to ride my bike be surrounded by adoring throngs and retire a legend, a god, and a gazillionaire by age 32. Third, I'd like to express my appreciation to Johan Bruyneel not only for refusing to let me out of my contract when he knew perfectly well he intended to hose me, but also for treating me like an unwanted disease of the intimate areas while I freakin' WON HIM ANOTHER TOUR DE FRANCE. Finally, in the spirit of comity and good sportsmanship which we all hold so dear, I'd like to extend an olive branch to my boyhood hero Lance Armstrong, which I plan to present to him in his spokes on a downhill switchback at 80 kph in the queen stage of next year's Tour. Vino?

Alexander Vinokourov: Thank you, Alberto. It's really a joy to learn that your moral objection to some of the most egregious doping violations since the Spaniards' can be swayed by a mere fraction of one of our sponsor's daily budget for armored limousines rotgut vodka black-market weaponry and high-class prostitutes. Nothing could bring me more pleasure than the prospect of catering to your every whining whim every day for the next four years only to be publicly dope-slapped and vilified on an ongoing basis in return. I not only look forward to riding with you as a mentor, but also as the kind of colleague who really, really needs to know precisely how you managed to make it out of Manolo Saiz's mystery-skin-patch-factory at Liberty Seguros and--not that I'm suggesting anything--to this point without getting busted. Last but not least, I too would like to extend an olive branch to my great and dear friends, the hypocrite enabler scumweasels who so randomly target the disfavored and wantonly slobber over their beloveds at UCI. Enjoy watching your golden boy race in a jersey with my face plastered on it in 2010, suckers!

Kazakh Business Consortium: We'll now open it up to questions from the cycling press. What do you mean "is he really happy to be here?" How dare you insult our great nation and its unimpeachable cycling supremacy you ignorant bourgeois dog-pig?! I'M GONNA SINK YOUR FEET INTO CONCRETE BREAK YOUR WEAKLING WESTERNER KNEECAPS AND THROW YOU INTO THE IRTYSH RIVER YOU !@#$ING !@#$! (conference breaks up amid sounds of running and chairs splintering)