Sunday, September 09, 2012

It's the 2012 Vuelta a Espana Racejunkie Awards!; and, Yer Final Contest Winner

Well, Alberto Contador's returned (eventually) in triumph, a really smashing edge-o'-your-seat Vuelta a Espana is behind us, the Worlds are ahead of us, and it's time for the incredibly prestigious 2012 Vuelta a Espana Racejunkie Awards!

Tour, Schmour Award: let's get this outta the way first: in 2012, the Giro was great, the Tour was weak, but this year's Vuelta was the best Grand Tour we've seen in *years*. Sure, the riders are still curled up on the floor of their team buses in fetal positions clutching their quads and sobbing for mama--but what's not fun about that? Bravo to the organizers--and let's hope at least a few strong contenders aren't too scared out of their minds to participate again next year!

Well, *Somethin'* Ain't Right There Prize: don't say you weren't thinking it, Pinocchio--when Contador couldn't drop Purito on three consecutive Alberto-perfect mountain stages in week 2, it sure didn't look like just some out-of-practice racing legs were the glitch. Oh, come on, I like the flashy little twerp too--but really, you didn't wonder just a *little* bit?

Holy !@#$ Save o' the Vuelta: yep, it's a two-fer for our tranquillo doe-eyed Pistolero--his blazing attack on (dang, well before) Fuentes De'. Perfect tactics that will be minutely studied by wannabes in trouble for years to come. Don't tell me I alone remember how much this kid had to learn about strategery just a few short seasons ago!

Oh, *No*! Bawling Blubberin' Scenario o' Doom Prize: in a related award, poor, broken lord o' the climbs Purito, who even rode the time trial of his life for heck's sake, being so totally caught unawares by Alberto's freak attack on the fateful Fuentes De'. Was I the only one who wanted to run up to him afterwards with his teddy bear and a lollipop?

Punk-!@# Move o' the Race: Alejandro Valverde. Really? Attacking former leader/3d place finisher Rodriguez for the points jersey in the very last move of the race? Okay, technically he had the right. But why would he act on it, except to be a colossal !@#$? You already *got* second, Alejandro--drop on anvil on Purito's package too whydontcha?

Uh, He Was Riding? Prize: sorry, but former Vuelta champ (shut up! I'm still glum about Roberto Heras! shut up!) Denis Menchov. It was great he bagged a stage win tho!

Crash o' the Vuelta: no-one was even really hurt for once, and thank goodness for that, but for drama it's no contest, Alejandro Valverde's 50-odd second loss--by Sky attack or by accident--at Valdezcaray. Karma's a bitch, ain't it?--and quit cryin' already, you lost by more than that anyway!

Is There *Any* Sport Spain Don't Kick !@# In? Statuette o' Exasperation Award: two minutes between the top boys on the podium, then even the closest guy a cool ten--ten!--minutes back. !@#$in' insult moratorium--anyway, you know who you are!

Sticktoitveness Award: there's sprints at the Vuelta? Up to the very last day, that you have to ride over 8 bazillion mountains to get to? Well, he did grab a season's worth of wins in two weeks doin' it--well done John Degenkolb!

Wily Stealth Move o' the Race: Euskaltel-Euskadi, intentionally keepin' it low-key without even a single stage win, juuuuuuuust to take the unsuspecting peloton by surprise next year. Right on, Orange Armada--see you on top o' the podium in 2013!

!@#$-You Moment o' the Vuelta: take his Giro, take his Tour--AC's still takin' it to the bank, mother!@#$ers! Yep, in a perfect flashback to Armstrong at his last Tour de France, Alberto's 7-finger salute to UCI on the roll up to the line, one for each Grand Tour he's got and a couple they think he don't. Brilliant!

Class Act of the Race: Purito, every single damn day. Pride without braggadocio, defeat without blame, sportsmanship without pettiness--on that alone, Rodriguez gets the win, so I really hope we see him do it one day!

Well, them's my awards--so crack the champagne, hide the syringes, and let's get ready for next year!

And, Our Contest Winner: finally, with major bonus points to those of you who generously brown-nosed for Euskaltel and offered even more creative responses, our Part Tres contest winner, straight from the Holy Once-Eroski Cap-o'-Destiny is: Jez! Jez, check yer email, pick yer lucky rider-winner, and the rest of you--thanks ever so much for playing, and if Andy Schleck don't suck, I may even run this during the Tour next time! Naaaaaah....

1 comment:

Jez Andrews said...

Thanks racejunkie! Great Vuelta, I hope tour de France officials have had a good look at this and taken some notes.