Thursday, April 28, 2011

What the !@#$ Are You Doing to Thor Hushovd, You Twisted Goon Pervert Freaks?!

Bow, Garmin!: okay, the truth is out: Thor Hushovd doesn't like Jonathan Vaughters' tactics, he doesn't like this "figure it out on the road" !@#$, *and*, worst of all, he doesn't feel like he's getting the support he needs. What the !@#$, Garmin, the man is not only we love Thor Hushovd, he's !@#$in' world champion for !@#$'s sake! Y'know, I actually admire Vaughters a lot--not least because I love Tyler Farrar, who's a real class act--but !@#dammit, man, if Thor says so, it must be true! Here, pal, *look* who you're squandering----now get your freakin' act together and pay him the homage (and dough) he deserves, or suck it in the flaming smoking depths of hell for all eternity!

Brutt Force: my, that was one sturdy win in freezing miserable rainy conditions by quiet Pavel Brutt at the Tour of Romandie--almost as cool as young Jonathan "Holy Crap a Euskaltel Rider Just Won a Prologue!" Castroviejo taking his first professional win in the prologue over the bad-!@# likes of Taylor Phinney, and even cooler than Damiano Cunego picking himself up out of a season-long funk to take the stage today. In less happy--and in fact darned near terrifying--Romandie news, reformed pinup Ivan Basso got clocked right in the kisser with a kicked-up rock, causing the poor boy to literally see stars and, even worse, busting the tooth of one of the comeliest faces in all of cycling. Don't worry, Ivan--I'm sure they can fix it, and you're still really, really pretty! Oh wait, that's your hot sister. Well, you're still really, really pretty too!

The US Takes Down Lance, Mr. Ed: pack it in, Novitzky, there's bigger game than some podunk 7-time Tour de France winner to go after--yes, a United States Senator has decided to take on the scourge of desperate thoroughbreds snorting through their stud-fee trust funds in search of EPO, HGH, Clenbuterol, or whatever's the Next Big Thing. Dang, boys, why not just hook up with the Spanish peloton (allegedly!)--can you say "group discounts"?

Watch Yer !@#, Cav!: finally, if I were the very fine Mark Cavendish, and plotting my next gratuitous press dope-slap to whatever poor sap irks me that day, I'd be getting ready to eat some humble pie, honey--yep, the spawn of legendary leg-crusher Erik Zabel is already well on his way to beating the stuffing out of darn near everyone, and the big-boy peloton can't be far away. Clock's ticking, Cav--enjoy it while it lasts, big guy!

Sunday, April 24, 2011

What the Schleck?!

Gilbert on a Tear: y'know, I'm quite fond of the Schlecks (yes, I know Frank's got a checkered past, but since he's not Roberto or Iban or even Simoni snorting his grandmother's coke-tainted "candies", I'm not particularly gonna defend him), but if the two of 'em together can't tag-team Philippe Gilbert out of a win, classy as the boys were in inevitable defeat it's a pretty good thing for everybody's egos that the Ardennes classics are history and they can all just pack it up 'til he bags a few rolling stages in the Tour and Andy still snuggles safe in the GC. Next year the whole peloton can go all Cancellara on his !@# marking him and regain some dignity then. Here's the last 3k: You go, Philippe!

You Suck, Versus!: meanwhile, can I just say as an American viewer that you !@#$in *suck*, Versus! Don't !@#$in' tease me with Phil all tweeting the impending coverage and then tell me in 3 different places on your damn website you're gonna show it at 3 different times, then replace it entirely with an entire afternoon of Captain Inbred's House of Bass-Fishing 'n' Banjo Playin' or whatever catastrophically non-time-sensitive bul!@#$ you're gonna show instead--*dammit*! Look, frankly I'm inordinately grateful whenever you show a freakin' thing related to cycling besides that poison-ivy irritation of a Lance Armstrong Amstel No-Cal commercial or whatever it is, but is there *anything* we American cycling fans can do that won't make our mommas wash our mouths out with soap to make you pony up a !@#damn race on TV before it's time for the next year's edition to be on already? You *blow*--now double Phil and Paul's salary and put 'em on in a timely manner you !@#$%&%#*s!

Fear And Loathing In Italy: in upcoming race news, I see even wavering-vegan Contador's a bit freaked by some of the climbs he's been recon-ing for the Giro d'Italia, and for my money, if I were the brilliant little squirt, I'd be more afraid of an angry Italian tifoso whackin' him off the side of the mountain than the climbs themselves. Don't worry, Alberto--I'm sure with your (alleged!) connections, you can find *some* !@#$ that'll make you grow eyes on the back of your head! That said, even I can't help but be truly suckered by a guy who's clearly so nice to his dog: Heck, you just name a blood bag after him, kid, and you've got Basso and Valverde written all over you!

Sunday, April 17, 2011

An Ode to Pat "Dick" McQuaid

O cycling world, how much you're fraught,
With thrills and glory, dope and rot,
And to it all is brought the eye,
of that great watchdog, UCI.
But no man really makes the grade,
Like our dear leader, Pat McQuaid.

You run the sport with iron hand,
Your name spreads fear throughout the land,
From bikes two ounces underweight,
To DSes you inanely hate.
And through it all your expertise,
Sez what can help Petacchi's wheeze,
Or just how much Clenbuterol,
Will set you up to take a fall.

You whine and scream when dopers cheat,
Except the ones you like this week,
Thus erasing any doubts,
You're hypocrite enabler louts.
You weren't poz? Tough noogies, sport--
We'll use the new bio passport
To say you're stoked, though we can't get
Valid goods on you just yet.
Never mind it looks real weak,
To peg some half-assed domestique,
Instead of catching bigger fry,
Whose legal team will make us cry.

You keep us on the moral path,
Afraid of all your random wrath,
While singing praises high and low,
Of those who give you lots of dough.
You kiss the rumps of guys like Lance,
Cringing like you'll wee your pants,
But lest we think you're just a whore,
Look! You're nailing Contador!

Race radios you want to ban,
For delectation of the fans,
In hope some poor sod's chain will glitch,
And send him flying in a ditch,
Because you know a rider's cries,
Send TV ratings to the skies,
And who cares if some nice domestique,
Busts his collarbone this week?

Teams say they want a whole new league,
Due to UCI fatigue,
But already enjoy the grace,
Of knowing they will never face,
Responsibility for pushing drugs,
Through their riders' IV plugs,
Nor their sponsors take the hit,
For approving that disgusting !@#$.
And with your help they're surely free,
Of uncomfortable publicity.

Now let us honestly report,
Of this noble, corrupt sport,
None would really watch a race,
At a dull and undoped pace,
So, Pat, to you we give our thanks,
O Patron Saint of Thieving Skanks!

Thursday, April 14, 2011

Time for Amstel Gold, Baby!

Yer Pre-Race Roundup and Carnage Report: yes, with Roubaix in the rear-view and Quick Step's Patrick "Pay Cut" Lefevere suddenly realizing that his own lucrative career is !@#$ed if he lets Tom Boonen defect to another squad, it's time to move on to Amstel Gold and, soon, Liege, baby, but one guy who won't be at Amstel is poor we love Cadel Evans, whose bruised femur is keeping out of his (largely support, because he's not an !@#hat) role in the weekend's festivities. Get well soon Cadel! Still on tap for Liege: Damiano "Mr. Clean" Cunego, implicated in the latest Italian doping investigation of mostly-Lampre boys but passionately defended by the hometown press. Dang, I *knew* that last tattoo of his was tryin' to tell us something!

You're Goin' Down, Scarponi!: and, in hot Italian doping news, I see the narcs descended on the once-disreputable-and-lately-pretty-freakishly-impressive Michele Scarponi, bagging the notorious performance-enhancing drugs, um, powdered milk, a common legal anti-inflammatory, and Enervit bars. Blood-doping my !@#--you turn up with a packet of Swiss Miss hot chocolate next time, and we are gonna *fry* you, sucker!

Reason No. 8,140,398 Why Jens Voigt Is a God: really, is there anyone with half a brain--and I proudly count myself among such stellar company--who *doesn't* acknowledge the great Jens as a higher life-form than we mere lowly plebeian ground-dwelling spuds? This time, it's because Jens directed a big fat thank-you to the smashing--and often borderline deranged--Basque (and ergo Euskaltel) fans for their bitchin' support over the years. Clearly, the rabid Basque tifosi--already rooting for the best climbers on earth (shut up! I still love Iban! shut up!)--rock on two fronts. Woo-hoo Jens and the orange army--and bow, beeyotches!

Sunday, April 10, 2011

Thor Hushovd, What the !@#$?

What a Roub(aix)!: so he had the legs to grab Cancellara's wheel, and, miraculously for just about anyone, stick with it. And I wholly understand he couldn't remotely help chase with faithful sidekick Johan Van Summeren up the road. But !@#$, when you look at the quality of the pursuing group, and even leaving aside the colossal carnage caused by the moron race motos, what the !@#$ is we love Thor "Holy Crap He's the New World Champion!" Hushovd doing at the !@#-end of nowhere behind his (excellent and deserving, but still) domestique by the end of the course anyway? Crap--Vaughters, can't you stick *something* legal in this boy's Wheaties? And I can't even bear to think about poor Tommeke, for whom I was also rooting, standing by the side of the road picking his nose like an eejit for an hour and a half on the Arenberg. Look, thanks to the smashing (and I somehow doubt inadvertent) spectator camerawork, you can even *see* how uptight his !@# is: Aiiigggghhhhh!

Woo-hoo Klodi! Aw, *Rats*, Samu'!: meantime, for the second straight stage race in a row, I was torn between serf supreme Andreas Kloden and Samuel "Euskalteeeeeeeeel!" Sanchez, as Klodi's impressive--and I won't say, because I am still so happy to see him not being *someone's* doormat beeyotch, perhaps, um, well, astonishing--win at Vuelta a Pais Vasco overshadows Samu's stage win and his miserable meltdown in the final time trial. Jeez Klodi, can't you just go back to whacking the Grand Tours for heck's sake? Wait, that won't help Sanchez...dagnabit! Oh, and even though his basically calling the blameless Gavazzi a thieving wanker was perhaps less than entirely gentlemanly, Oscar Freire's relegation was bull!@#$:

You Suck, Versus!: speaking of Roubaix, what the H-E-Double Hockey Sticks is with Versus--to whom I am, to be fair, grateful for showing anything on two wheels and without horns or rodeo clowns even with their beloved paycheck Armstrong gone--showing Paris-Roubaix 36 hours after the actual race had already ended? I mean, really, folks, "100% Real Hunting"? Show some guy going mano-a-mano with a pissed-off hibernation-starved grizzly bear, and we'll talk. 'Til then, Paris-Roubaix's more survivalist. Versus, I'm tired of watching 6 hours of racing in freakin' Dutch--treat this sport with some respect, for heck's sake!

Wednesday, April 06, 2011

Cat. 2s, Cavendish, and Carnage

Vino's Back! (Again, and Again, And Again): yes, one can almost feel the excitement of the cycling narcs (for no reason! no reason whatsoever!), and the thrill o' the crowd, as completely reformed Alexander Vinokourov takes off on a hilly Vuelta a Pais Vasco stage for the win and, to the Schleck brothers' and Contador's likely interest, Ivan Basso withdraws to head home for some serious medical tests on what the hell has gone wrong with him this month. Dang, Ivan--forget that saint and fair-play !@#$, it *clearly* ain't payin' to ride clean!

Oh, the Agony!: all right, *now* what the hell do I do--while indisputable god Jens Voigt sez race radios are a must, and I must defer to his total stompin' perfection in all things even though I actually think otherwise, no less than Lord o' the Commentary Phil Liggett has weighed in with a slightly conflicting (and for me, a preferable) view: if safety's the issue, and the riders are to ever think for themselves, then that's all--all--they can be. Well, great--*now* who the !@#$ are we supposed to bow to? There can only be one sovereign at once, dag nabit--perhaps a jousting match between 'em is called for to settle the whole thing?

More Things That Make You Go Hmmmmmm: y'know, it's great to see Benna-jet back in the game after a truly crap 2010. But I don't care *what* the hell kind of course it is, or how great his form's just become--Daniele Bennati beating Dave Zabriskie in a time trial just plain makes me nervous. Please don't say it's the steak, please don't say it's the steak...anyhoo, congrats, I'm sure, Daniele!

(Un)Pretty Prijs: and, it was a nasty end, but a great win for the lately beleaguered Mark Cavendish, at the Scheldeprijs today. Down like a brick: US sprint king Tyler Farrar. Aw, heck! Still, it looked darned unlikely anyone else would've taken it, and it's awful nice to see you get your legs back under you, Cav--now all you have to do is kick in with your vicious tirades of verbal abuse aimed at innocent compatriots, and you're 100% on for the season! Here's the carnage: Get well soon, everybody!

It's A Bike Porn Contest!: finally, it's with great regret that I report that, due to "work" and "I have no particular desire to be mistaken for a bigger freak than I actually am", I recently missed my local bike porn film festival, but, in honor thereof, and because I love you all, we here at racejunkie are officially taking up a contest for, and a collection o' euros to hire, the Cyclist You'd Most Like To See In A Bike Porn Flick. Me, I don't know if the laws of physics allow Tom Boonen to bare his butt for the cameras for more gigabytes than are already currently available on the internet, but depending on who you vote for, I'm willing to ask. Reader(s), name yer poison, and yer contribution to the pot!

Monday, April 04, 2011

It's A Pre-Tour Showdown, Honey!

Yer Flanders Ronde-Up: okay, Nick Nuyens won and serious huzzahs to him, but damn, if Cancellara could get nut-whacked by his rivals that hard that many times and still survive for third place (much less the last place that lesser mortals would've suffered), he really is just un-freakin'-touchable and every other rider on earth should just go home. Controversy o' the race: Garmin guru Jonathan Vaughters telling his squad waaaaaaaaay early on to sit up and do nothin' the rest of the race. Fine, hindsight is 20-20, and to be fair, he had his reasons, but considering Boonen made it within seconds of the break at the line, couldn't we *have* been lookin' at a Thor-n-Tyler-friendly sprint, which one of 'em could reasonably have taken? And before I get smacked for being a dimwit know-nothing armchair quarterback--because believe you me, there are *far* better reasons to tell me I bite--I note BMC and a few other boys still didn't give up the ghost 'til the very end of the game. Also not helpful: Vaughters loyally informing the press he doesn't exactly *know* why we love Thor "Holy Crap He's the World Road Champion!" Hushovd sucks so bad this season. Who cares whether it's true (which it's not, so go to hell)--stuff it, buddy!

Euskalteeeeeeeelllllll!: meantime, over in Tour de France news, it's time for the beautiful--and exceedingly mountainous--Vuelta a Pais Vasco, with we love Euskaltel god Samuel "Holy Crap He's the Olympic Road Champion!" Sanchez, hot off his weekend win at the GP Miguel Indurain, just nipped at the line by a brilliantly riding like-I-really-care-who-the-hell-it-was, earnest prettyboy Ivan Basso looking to avenge his March, and the Schleck brothers lookin' to remind everyone "hey! we're in this squad too!". And while I've almost been seduced back into believing in Basso, since it's Euskaltel, I'm all about Sanchez. Allez allez Samu'! Since I'm a crappy sport, here's him taking the GP Indurain this weekend instead:

Drug-Doping Bad, Aero-Doping Good: speaking of Schlecks, come to think of it, Frank *has* been implicated in traditional doping scandals (allegedly!), but to me, primarily because it pissed off the Italians, who usually just whine about the Spanish, this one's far worse: Frank's under investigation for smoothin' out his concave chest with a stomach-side Camelbak to nail the GC at the Criterium International. Great, next thing you know the boys'll all be donning prosthetic aero-boobs. "Chain-drop" my !@#, Andy--*this* year Contador's gonna take you out with his honkin' new double-Ds!

WADA Load: finally, I see the noble folks at WADA have called for the scrapping of B-samples in all cycling doping controls in order to cover for the incompetent lab chimps who routinely f--I mean, to save precious time, money, and resources used in the wasteful double-checking of obvious fraud. Y'know, WADA, by that system, your holy cash-cow Lance Armstrong would've been busted. So which two Tours de France are you gonna strip him of, exactly? Thought so!

Friday, April 01, 2011

It's Flanders, Baby!

And Tom Boonen Is Ready: yep, just days after his assclown team boss Patrick Lefevere decided to "motivate" recent Gent-champ Boonen for his showdown with Cancellara by telling the press he's gonna get a whoppin' pay cut if he don't start winning more--and I'm guessing that the guy in actual charge who is personally failing to successfully guide his team ain't himself offering Quick Step any of *his* salary back--Tom's truly put down the hammer on his pre-Flanders prep in response, forcing himself into a spectacularly grueling regimen of lip-synching, air-guitar, and headbanging: Geez, Lefevere, are you *trying* to set our boy back 2 years?--stick a drinking straw in his nose and push 'im face down into a grande-sized cup o' blow, whydontcha!

Yer Handy Flanders Preview: and, while some nimrods caused a slight adjustment stealing cobbles from the course--which frankly, might've done some of the shakier Classics domestiques a favor--it's still lookin' to be a smashing route, , and while whatsisface o' the time trial is favored to win, and it's hard not to root for monster attacker Philippe Gilbert, we all know, deep down, it's gonna be Thor. Yeah, go to hell! For the women's race: look for Grace Verbeke to redeem Belgian honor again this year, and if she doesn't, and Vos doesn't beat her, Ina-Yoko Teutenberg will simply go Rock-em Sock-em Robots on them with the awesome power of her fists.Go Ina!

Buon Compleanno!: finally, tho' it still crushes me he's no longer on the road, happy birthday to great champion/Azzurri Commissario Tecnico Paolo "Il Grillo" Bettini, and frankly, I was stumped as to whether to post a tribute of his greatest victories, or the hilarious 8-minute segment where he gets "punked" on Italian TV when a coupla hotties steal his personal airplane for a disastrous joyride, his equally-hot wife goes in for the kill defending her man, and Paolo gets to break up the cagefight. So unless I hear otherwise, here's the Cricket, as always, winnin' stuff. We miss you Paolo!