Friday, November 26, 2010

Contador Opens the Faucets

Wah, Wah, Wah: yeah, this'll teach you to piss off fast-aging baby savant Alberto Contador: as he's done every time he's sworn absolute silence on his ongoing doping investigation until it's done then immediately pimped himself to another sympathetic press outlet, he's gone and threatened to quit the sport again if he's busted, in case the Spanish cycling fed wasn't sure which way they were supposed to vote, and more, he's also ripped into Team Astana--which he himself bailed out of for next year, though this appears not to have crossed his radar'o'relevance--for not "supporting" him enough at the Tour and in the wake of his doping scandal. Um, not to rewrite history, here, Alberto, but weren't your teammates--like, oh, Lance "!@#$ You You Little Peon Punk!" Armstrong--just the *slightest* bit *less* supportive the year before?! Sure, Vinokourov'd attack his own grandma on a walk to the mailbox--but really, you wanna take on someone who's even *more* likely to run your !@# off a mountainside in July 2011?

Share and Share Alike: meanwhile, another scandal has rocked the Italian cycling world, not the shocking efficiency with which even that odious little weasel Ricco' is snowjobbing the cycling fed into thinking he's actually reformed, but that Italian mountain biker Elena Gaddoni has been busted for high testosterone. Y'know, it seems to me this can have a happy ending: since Danilo DiLuca's been busted for doping up like a chick on masking agents 'til he had the testosterone levels of a Smurf, she and Danilo can do business and simply switch syringes so they each stay believably within their respective genders. Throw off the narcs, you don't waste the drugs you paid for, everyone wins!

And The Oscar Goes To: the Giro d'Italia! Yes indeedy, we love Oscar Freire--having recovered from nether-region-threatening saddlesores, freak back tweaks, and various Tour de France pellet-gun wounds--and decided to bag retirement for another year, is gonna skip the You Suck Amgen EPO Tour of California to ride, before he says goodbye, the perfect Giro. Sure, there aren't actually any "sprint" stages in this year's edition--but hey, what says an Oscar-friendly "slight uphill to the finish" like an hors-category deathmarch to the top of the Dolomites? Woo-hoo Oscar!

It's the Racejunkie Give Thor Hushovd A Raise Campaign!: okay, like I care about the problems of people already earning a cool 1 mil a year, but I gotta say, if Thor Hushovd sez he might've liked a raise if only he hadn't signed with new squad Garmin before his World Champ jersey kicked in and they hadn't already busted their budget, then by golly, someone oughta give our big lug a raise. So buy yer bitchin' Garmin stuff here , I'll post a link to their no-doubt spiffy new team kit as soon as it's out, and Garmin, use the extra dough to pony up a little present in Thor's argyle stocking this year--I mean, let's totally gratuitously look at this guy's win again!

Saturday, November 20, 2010

Racejunkie's Things I'm Thankful For This Year

Yes, folks, even I can't be completely pissy for 365 days straight, so as we Americans all get ready to pause to stuff ourselves senseless with turkey, sweet potatoes, and pie in extravagant gratitude for the Native Americans not bushwhacking the Pilgrims while they still had the chance, I ponder the other things--about cycling in particular--for which I am especially thankful this year:

1. Mark Cavendish. The boy is just the gift that keeps on giving. The fastest man on earth? You betcha. Already one of the most prolific sprinters in all of cycling's noble (and ignoble) history? Sure 'nuff. Possessor of the toothiest, flashingest smile this side o' the British Empire? Don't think I didn't notice, Tusher 'n' Co.! But best of all, Cav can always be counted on for a pithy quote on how much his rivals suck, a pithy quote on how much his own team sucks, or a timeless pic of an obscene gesture as he crosses the line that surely makes his family proud. Thanks, Cav!

2. Lance Armstrong's finally freakin' retired once and for all, and we no longer have to listen to everyone yappin' about him 24/7. Wait a minute...hey, I call bull!@#$!

3. Euskaltel-Euskadi. Samu. The squad. The dashing Halloween team kits. The screaming fans. Most of all, the climbs. Winged angels, I say!

4. Phil Liggett and Paul Sherwen. Sigh. Can *anything* more be said than "Bow, beeyotches!"?

5. Clenbuterol. Damn, without it, the boys *still* might be climbing the Tourmalet. Someone, get me an IV ba--I mean, a steak, quick!

6. My loyal (or intermittent) readers. Got 18 reasons why I blow in today's post alone? Yeah, you told me. Thanks to all!

7. Holy crap Thor Hushovd is the new World Champion!

8. Holy crap Giorgia Bronzini is the new World Champion!

9. Jens Voigt. I hope he sticks it out 'til he's old as the Alps. In fact, he'll probably just grind them down to sea level with the sheer force of his pedal-strokes. Woo-hoo Jens!

10. UCI. Ha! No, just kidding. But I *am* thankful for all (both of, whatever) those teams, riders, journalists, officials and tifosi who do work so hard to clean up this beautiful sport. Good karma to all of you!

Well, that's most of my Thanksgiving list for this year, if only to give myself recovery time for so much saccharine goodness. I'd give a special honorary nod of appreciation to Alberto Contador for both a dazzling Tour and a supremely disgusting after-circus, but as I Euskaltel fan, I just can't be nice to anyone who so outrageously slanders innocent Basque beef. You're gonna have *earn* it next year, Contatwerp!

Monday, November 15, 2010

God Sez Don't Do It!

What More Do You Need?: if fear of those impotent enabler-weenies at UCI weren't enough to stop you from doping--and I can't imagine why on earth it would be--you better quit now, because the heavenly Big Guy's puttin' the hammer down, baby--yep, none but Pope Benedict himself has placed doping on the celestial no-no list. HEAR THAT CONTADOR--YOU'RE GOING TO HELL, FLAMING SULFUROUS ETERNAL HELL, I TELLS YA! Or that cow is, whatever. But hey, trading one's immortal soul for the chance of extremely pissing Lance Armstrong off when you break his 7-Tour de France-win record--seems like a worthwhile bargain to me!

Pop, Pop Goes the Weasel, the Weasel!: speaking of guys whose names begin with "Pop" (yes, that's lame--what the hell else do they have in common?), we're all waiting on tenterhooks to see how how the search results for the narcs of Lance lieutenant Yaroslav Popovych come out, and I gotta say, I'm feelin' juuuuuuuuust a tiny bit for this guy. Come on, Lance--if he did do it, you *know* he did for you, so man up and take responsibility for the absolute autocracy and total cult of obedience you created in support of your own personal glory. If you don't, and you did do it--!@#$ goin' down for nothin', Popo, let out your voice and *sing*!

Survival of the Fittest: meantime, Team Schleck is ready for its first training camp, and, unlike in the CSC/Saxo Bank years, they won't be set adrift naked'n'soaking-wet on Arctic ice floes with nothing but hex wrenches and twine for fishing equipment while Bjarne laughs his !@# off from his beach cabana in Monaco. Since you clowns *did* stupidly spill the beans to the press on where you *will* be training, though, and with Riis in some danger of losing Contador to scandal, *I'd* sure be on the lookout for stalkers dressed in winter camo settin' out snares near bike routes. I'm just sayin...wait, could that be Bjar...naaaaahhhhhhh!...

You Oughta Know: finally, we all know--especially my faithful readers here at racejunkie--that cycling info on the web runs the gamut from total crap (shut up!) to truly ethereal brilliance. And if you really wanna know where your favorite--and unfavorite--riders of all time rank historically amongst the gods and why, then on the ethereal brilliance end, this man's your source. What's more, I hear tell he can set you up damn sweet on even that impossibly ill-fitting body-wrecking cheap-!@# ride of yours. And best of all, of course, is that Gilberto Simoni's still beating the stuffing out of that backstabbing wannabe punk Cunego. So check it out, and bow to his encyclopedic knowledge and spotless analysis, you (beloved) peons!

Thursday, November 11, 2010

That's It, He's Innocent!

The Documents Don't Lie, Baby: yes indeed, if a virtual barked-out order from the head of Alberto Contador's cycling fed that he doesn't want the child found guilty weren't enough to guarantee he's getting off, now Alberto's even got actual printed proof on his side: the team's miraculously found the receipt for the dirty Basque steak that Contador unwittingly consumed that fateful evening in July. Contador, of course, who swears every two minutes he's done commenting on this bull!@#$ farce that's severely hurting his feelings, has--um--commented to the press he's both delighted and confident he'll come out unscathed. Now, I don't want to be a spoil-sport here, but it seems to me that this receipt proves, at best, two things: (1) someone bought a steak to cook, and (2) because as we all know it's a sin to waste perfectly good food, particularly as two weeks into the Tour you're probably gonna beat the crap out of the next schmo who serves you carbs just from sheer ennui, someone connected with the purchaser probably ate it. O ho, case closed, UCI! Now, show me the rancher's veterinarian's medical records proving Bessie was diagnosed and treated with clenbuterol for her tragic, chronic asthma, and the chain of custody leading from pasture to team bus, and a wacky contemporaneous team-bus cell-phone photo snapping Alberto and domestiques with forkfuls of steak held aloft, and *then* we're talkin'... Wait, folks, I think we got it--take that, UCI, you meanies!

The Chicken Returns (He Hopes): meanwhile, should this whole silly thing nonetheless throw a wrench into Bjarne's increasingly-jeopardized plans not to completely suck eggs for next season, luckily, he's still got options: the narcs aren't gonna challenge aging ballroom dancer/ex-basically-Tour-winner Michael Rasmussen's participation in the Tour next year. Let's just be glad this Tour ain't exactly stuffed with time-trial miles, shall we? Good luck, Bjarne--you guys are gonna need it!

Monday, November 08, 2010

Good Luck With That, Suckers!

The Spaniards Step In: yes, UCI has taken the next step necessary to ensure their post-Armstrong boy king don't get overthrown by scandal: in accordance with the rules, they've turned the whole Alberto Contador investigation over to the Spaniards. BWAAAAAAHAHAHAHAHAHA! So much for snaggin' the big fish, you cowardly enablers! Y'know, I understand the Spanish system is much improved since the ol' Valverde Operacion Puerto days, namely that they've begrudgingly codified into law the general concept that doping's, seriously folks, not very nice at all. But in the face of humungous national outcry and the total defense by every national sporting official in existence over the cruel and clearly entirely bull!@#$ persecution of their eyelash-batting national hero--even from the sensitive hometown butcher who thought Alberto's dirty-meat defense was dubious--that the Spanish are gonna take *him* down? Let's preview the decision, shall we? (1) there was barely anything there, so there was functionally *nothing* there. (2) Lots of cows take asthma meds anyway--how else are they supposed to breathe while they're chewing all that "cud" crap all day? (3) The whole stupid IV-plasticizer thing is a red herring. And if it's not, the red herring was tainted. (4)*Look* at that cute little face--could this cute little face do anything wrong? No, and we don't want to look for needle holes in his cute little !@#, either. (5) !@#$ you, you !@#$ing !@#$wads--like *your* guys are any cleaner? And if all else fails, (6) it's such complex case we need an extra four years to think it over, in which time, he's free to ride.

Besides, look who this guy hangs out with: how *could* he dope? Now, if you're gonna prosecute him for constantly doing that beyond-annoying "Pistolero" !@#$ every time he crosses the line, *that* I'd back...

Friday, November 05, 2010

Don't Do It, Bjarne!

The Chicken Dance: no, it seems, gyrating suggestively (if scrawnily) in Bedazzlered floral disco outfits *isn't* enough to fulfill a guy who was on the cusp of winning the Tour de France when the same folks who let him ride it for three weeks knowing he'd missing doping controls suddenly got all outraged and pulled 'im out, as Michael Rasmussen not only keeps whining to get back on the bike with a real squad, but he's actually found, though the team director at issue coyly won't confirm it, a high-caliber buyer in--gnurk!--Bjarne Riis. Oh, Bjarne. Between Alberto and, well, damn near every cool rider on the planet, we know you've suffered some terrible blows of late, but to pick up a dope fiend like the Chicken--who the hell do you think you are exactly, Liquigas?

Men In Black: meantime, pity poor Armstrong ever-acolyte/foot washer/darn fine cyclist actually Yaroslav Popovych, who in being subpoenaed to testify at Jeff Novitsky's Lance Crucify-a-thon was apparently hunted down by the federales like Ted Nugent on elk. Geez, mount his bike helmet on the wall in yer living room like a set of antlers and you've really got a prize there! Me, except for that whole petty "justice" thing, I completely fail to see the point. I mean, didja even *think* you were gonna get anything helpful out of this guy?

Blood Simple: and, while we're feeling sympathetic to people making huge sums of money by screwing other riders, Alejandro Valverde's lost his latest appeal to the narcs, and, barring yet another last-ditch appeal, won't be gracing the peloton again til 2012. Which is a shame, come to think of it, as I always did look forward to him imploding and surging erratically before he started gettin' that !@#$ he was taking right, but if I can actually watch a race again and feel fairly confident that the guy winning it hasn't supplanted his entire bloodstream with 8-odd pints of liquid cheatin' dirtball, I'm more than game for that. Oh, Alejandro, if only you'd copped to "attempting" to cheat...or claimed it was your grandma's EPO...or blamed it on hard-core drug-addicted livestock...

Tyler Farrar Kicks !@#: in other news, am I the only one looking forward to watching US sprint king Tyler Farrar, whose admirable Tour de France was barely even sidelined by his suckmaster catastrophic wrist-crunch, whomp certain other sprinters next season? He welcomes his new teammates politely, he looks forward to sittin' down and amiably figuring out the schedule with potential rival Thor...the man is just complete opposite of the tiresome braggarts we're so accustomed to amongst the speedsters. Y'know, Cav, I truly treasure every Vinokourovian wingnut moment your mouth explodes like some foul gaseous volcano at the unsuspecting press. But while you *are* to be fair very good at giving credit to your teammates, if you're lookin' for class, take Tyler's. Or maybe just keep making obscene salutes as you cross the line, and have it out with Tyler on the road!

Woo-Hoo Norway!: finally, congrats to the fine country of Norway for being the bitchinest place on earth according to a new U.N. report, an honor due entirely, no doubt, to the fact that we love Thor Hushovd is the new-crowned world road race champion. Health, schmealth, happiness, schmappiness--really, what does any of that silly crap matter for a populace when you've got Thor?! Here, let's gratuitously review:

Monday, November 01, 2010

UCI See No Evil, Hear No Evil, Speak No Evil

Heaven Can Wait (And Wait, And Wait, And...): yep, those of us with an actual "doping bad" philosophy can get our collective panties out of their bunch--after those party-poopers at WADA ripped UCI for their Tour de France performance for (1) failing to carry out enough doping controls on certain favor--I mean, suspicious riders and (2) timing the controls so cyclists could flush the drugs out of their systems and (3) stomping through team-hotel lobbies with an oompah band to give the riders plenty o' time to hide their stashes yank the IVs out of their arms and snort a pile o' masking agents, UCI, in an unprecedent attack on the scourge of dangerous, traitorous doping in the peloton, has sworn to--yes, *study* the situation! Geez, you cowardly clowns, why not just give up the pretense and have Pat "Dick" McQuaid walk down the start line every morning with a musette full o' syringes whammin' 'em into each rider's !@#? Sure beats all this cloak-and-dagger fuss--and hey, who *doesn't* want a level playing field clearly guaranteed?

Riis' (In) Pieces: as if losing the Schlecks, Fabian, Jens, and Stuey weren't already crap news enough for one season--not to mention vague rumors about some obscure rider named "Contador" or something--poor Bjarne Riis was apparently kicked in his works yet again when he unsuccessfully tried to salvage next season by signing on reliable Tour de France stage winner/general Classics strongman we love Thor Hushovd. Damn, I know he was a complete tool to Sastre and won his own Tour de France drugged up like Keith Richards and all, but even I'm starting to feel a little twinge of mercy for this guy. I mean, freakin' Johan Bruyneel gets a two-month vacation with a special exception for the Tour Down Armstrong next season and *Bjarne* gets tossed into the deep-fryer for the whole year? Tylenol, take me away!

Live (Dope) Free or Die: finally, erstwhile dopemeister Danilo "Strawberry Shortcake" DiLuca's return to the peloton appears to be a bit on the rocks, as the Giro director expresses reluctance to take our reformed boy back into the race, and the Italian squads seem even to be more squicked out by Danilo than that odious little snakeling Riccardo Ricco'. Geez, it's not like Danilo hasn't done the Ivan Basso pin-up thing--he's posed on a zebra-striped throne in his birthday suit and walked the runway for Dolce & Gabbana, right?--I *told* you to copy the guy's entire playbook and start kissing babies for charity too, DiLuca you blockhead!