Saturday, July 10, 2010

French Riders Who Don't Suck, Sissy-Boy Slap-Fights, and That Landis Thing

Chapeau, Sylvain!: y'know, just as I was explaining to a few dear family members how exactly it is the French haven't even won their own Tour for 25 years, comes boys like Sylvain Chavanel and Jerome Pineau to restore my faith that they're almost certain to win it again before the start of the next millenium. Toss in a win for Sandy Casar if he don't get taken out by a dog again and we've darn near got us a renaissance! Of course, Bweeguh BBox Whateverthehell promptly reignited the ashes of perpetual French self-destruction by ruthlessly hunting down their own countrymen like it was Armstrong in the lead, but I'm sure it was a brilliant tactical move in the end. Oh, to hear the brave chords of the Marsellaise again at the top of the podium in Paris...well, in the interim they can always figure out a way to give another tribute to the worthy Bernard Hinault instead!

Run! Run for Your Life!: in other news, I don't know who the heck the dim-bulb photog was who thought right in front of Robbie "Head-Butt" McEwen's front wheel was a nice place to take a stroll, but our boy is still sore and, worse, irked today so if I were him I'd catch the next flight out of France and parachute into some remote jungle 'til Robbie calms down round about the middle of next year: Can this guy *ever* catch a break this year?

Catfight!: meantime, in an even worse example for the kiddies than Cavendish's tantrums, Boonen's former coke-snorting escapades and Armstrong's total lack of sportsmanship and class, a mildly put-out Carlos Barredo whanged his wheel repeatedly onto the head of elbow-jousting Rui Costa, proving that there's no misunderstanding between respectable professionals that can't be solved by impaling the jagged edge of a busted carbon bike part into someone else's brain stem. Your moms must be *so* proud--put these boys into cheap miniskirts and hooker heels, and they'd be right at home on any VH1 reality show!

In Quasi-Defense of Floyd Landis--Now Hear Me Out!: yes, as we all know, everyone from the fans to the sponsors to the One himself are in deep-implausible-denial mode over the explosive Wall Street Journal revelations of US Postal/Armstrong doping hijinks, with Interpol now on Lance's !@#, Hincapie and Hamilton called in by the federales, and Landis justly reviled as a lying, self-serving scum-pig. Still, in the interests of consistency, I think it's high time we forgiving souls here at racejunkie do the unthinkable: give 'im credit where credit is due. Now hold on before you start swearing at me! Landis is a weasel and a general tool. And while pursuing his claim of innocence was just a more hysterical version of the typical doped-cyclist jerkiness, it was in fact particularly odious of this loathesome creature to set up, seek out, and worst of all accept, money from some really lovely, faithful people who mostly made a hell of lot less money than him working a hell of a lot harder for it--and no, calling it the "Floyd Fairness Fund" not the "Floyd Innocence Fund" as some ween technocrat suggested does not excuse the disgusting dishonesty deliberately implied by the lack of the correct title, the "Floyd Get My Filthy Slimedwelling Carcass Off On a Bull!@#$ Technicality Fund," which Landis would clearly have known would've brought in waaaaay less ill-acquired dough. So why am I giving Landis credit for *anything* except being a swinemeister? Because (1) does anyone really think Lance never did *any* of it? and (2) at least Floyd, unlike every other rat, copped to his pathetic motives, specifically that he's accusing Lance not out of any sense of conscience or remorse--which he still seems not to have--but because he's pissed off he got busted when other guilty riders never did. Petty? Yep. Characterless? Ding ding--we have a winner! But I've sworn before I'd at least minimally respect these disgraces if they were just open about that, and gosh darn it, we're stickin' to it. So Floyd, take comfort--you've just earned a ticket out of eternal hell and into hell's eternally dull waiting room instead!

Up, Up with People!: finally, as the boys get ready to tackle the first serious shakeout mountain stage tomorrow--and it'll be interesting to see how baby Schleck hangs in without big bro Frank's help in the highest passes--the Giro Donne has already hit its Queen stage, conquering the fearsome Stelvio and crowning great US climber Mara Abbott as the likely winner at the final day. Also looking awesome: world road race Tatiana Guderzo. Forza, donne!

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