Sunday, April 13, 2014

It's Yer 2014 Paris-Roubaix Racejunkie Awards!

Cobblestone, schmobblestone: the Queen of the Monuments is behind us, so let's get on to the *really* prestigious festivities, mine. Therefore, without further ado:

1. Crash o' the Race: wow, considering what a slasher-movie mangle-fest the Hell o' the North usually is, the surprise is rather that there wasn't one. Nonetheless, Luca Paolini's spectacular pratfall takes it for sheer "holy crap!"ness. Good thing he had that Duck Dynasty beard to cushion 'im!

2. Crash o' the Race (Game-Changer Edition): No, none of the favorites got badly taken down themselves, and that'd've been a right suck way to lose the race. But Cancellara, already down a Devolder, sure didn't need his teammate to ricochet off the curb right in front of him and cost Fabian that wee bit of wasted energy getting back to the front. Bet he had enough wattage to thwap the guy upside the head after the race in the discreet environs of the team-bus, though!

3. Domestique of Paris-Roubaix: Go to hell, this is killin' me! Yep, it's Tom Boonen. Oh Tommeke, I *know* you were pissed--but what the hell did that serve *repeatedly* futilely taking off, with Niki on your wheel no less? Anyway, Terpstra did ride beautifully--and he coulda done worse than having you as a launching-pad!

4. Sigh o' Relief o' the Season: yeah, bite me, haters, Phil Liggett and Paul Sherwen could sit there reciting the action while a wall o' paint dries, and they'd *still* be worth listening to all day. Welcome back at last Phil and Paul--I was starting to get a bit nervous there!

5. Peter Peter Pave-Eater Award: Sagan, that was a valiant effort, but yet again, time--and next year's sponsorship dough--is ticking by. A little less goofballery, a little more whup-!@#, maybe?

6. Lone Wolf Prize: Y'know, even Fabian Cancellara can't do it alone. Once in a while!

7. Thooooooooooooooooooooooooor! Award: that was him all right, resplendent in national champion colors, and however briefly, pulling hard at the front of the race. Thoooooooooooooooor!

8. Weight of a Nation Prize: Yeah, that was the ever-maligned Pippo Pozzato coming in first among all the Italians in the race, baby! In 50th, 6:44 down, but seriously, oughtn't he get some nice compliments for that?

9. Two Towers Award: Niki Terpstra's solo surge--and triumph--was great. But was there ever a happier podium runner-up than the bangin' John Degenkolb? Tell me, you soulless cynic, that wasn't just sweet to behold!

10. All *Right* Already! Hype o' the Race: yes, 10th in Paris-Roubaix is amazing. But jeez, was I the only one who felt it was a liiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiittle overdone on the whole Wiggo thing? Wake me up when he whines about the Giro again!

11. A Picture Is Worth a Thousand Words Prize: what else?

Well, whatever I missed--and I admit I was distractedly crestfallen over the Tom Boonen situation--feel free to fill in. Now, time to root for Gilbert's redemption at the Ardennes Classics!

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