Sunday, July 26, 2015

It's Yer 2015 Tour de France Racejunkie Awards! #letour

Yes, the urine's been thrown, the champagne's been quaffed, and Peter Sagan made like a 1930s machine-gun gangster on the podium, so as we all catch our breaths and finally tear ourselves away from our Twitter feeds, it's time for the incredibly prestigious 2015 Tour de France Racejunkie Awards! Prizes: well, if anyone's so insane as to actually claim it, I swear I'll toss in an actual pretty little engraved trophy to go along with the eternal glory, shameful notoriety, and humiliating internet obscurity these fine awards will bring. So cue the Bernard Hinault-Christian Prudhomme dancing spangled chorus line, and let's start the show!

Punk-!@# Move of the Race: Yes, it is the topic of some debate whether Vincenzo Nibali intentionally attacked the yellow jersey when he looked directly into his face, saw he'd had a mechanical, and made what was undoubtedly a long-preplanned attack for redemption exactly at that very moment. Am I the only one who remembers the Schleck brothers (yeah, I said that, not the other attack that day) at Contador's Tour? But the winner is absolutely maillot jaune Chris Froome chasing down *every* second of Alberto Contador's moves from the very first *hint* of a hopeful pedalstroke. Valverde pulling that !@#$, I get--he's likely to self-destruct at any moment. But with AC six minutes down, that's not cautious. That's !@#holean!

Dumb-!@# Move of the Race: Warren Barguil, shouldering Geraint Thomas headfirst into a telephone pole *and* !@#-over-end into a ditch on a surprisingly broad switchback. Hold yer line, you eejit!

Formula One Wannabe Dipwad Award: Poor Jakob Fuglsang, about to pounce in the Alps from a breakaway and save the day for Astana when he's taken completely out by a race moto. Cold comfort: the motoman's ejection from the Tour, which was probably better off for the lout's personal post-race safety anyhow. You're supposed to ride *alongside* the riders, not *into* them, you !@#$!

Things That Make You Go "Hmmmm" Prize: for a hulking track-n-classics specialist, Geraint Thomas sure is one hell of a freaky-deaky mountain goat. All-rounders are a refreshing change of pace in the modern peloton, though. Quintana for Paris-Roubaix 2016!

Fan Disgrace o' the Race: that skankball who allegedly threw a cup of wee onto Chris Froome. There's *wanting* to--which let's be honest, is pervy enough--and there's *doing* it. Can we just find this repulsive clown and shove 'im off to live in a cave somewhere the rest of his life, away from civilized folks? Oh, the innocent days when you just had to worry about some bewigged howling doofus in a neon banana-hammock half taking you down on the Alpe d'Huez waving a giant flag in your face...

Best Domestique: yes, I am instinctively voting for we love Samuel Sanchez, who has turned his Olympic gold medal and prior King of the Mountains jersey into platinum domestique superstar service. But this one's honestly gotta go to brash prettyboy goofball Peter Sagan, who never hesitated to help a struggling, bone-tired Alberto Contador wherever and whenever he needed it most. Nice work, Peto--between that and the green jersey, even Oleg probably won't beat you too hard for not winning a stage!

Don't Look Back Award: y'know how Nairo Quintana took off on that brave, if ultimately too-late, attack against the yellow jersey on Alpe d'Huez? Yeah, it wasn't Froome he really had to watch out for, it was his own teammate Valverde! Just to make sure he was there to help if wee Nairo needed, I mean. Right, Alejandro?

Tearjerker Moment of 2015: Tejay Van Garderen's head being cradled by team management as he steps sobbing off the bike and into the team car as he retired within spitting distance of the podium in Paris. Shut up, ya cynic, like you weren't tearing up, too--now pass me the Kleenex, you know you've got a box of 'em right next to you right now!

Marginal Gains Award: Sky, I don't know *what* tweaks you were makin' in the absence of Porte's personal Giro d'Italia motorpalace--but I bet the other squads are trying to find out!

Whining Crybaby Statuette o' the Tour: his graceless constant bitching in the face of overwhelming success was that single singing mosquito that drives you screaming out of bed and bat-!@#$ arm-swinging crazed in the middle of the night. Wah, the press is conspiring against me, wah, it's just the Wheaties leaving me 8 teammates in front of me on the top of la Toussiere, wah, Nibali's unfairly attacking me, wah, someone's turned my face into a toilet, wah wah wah. Chris Froome, this one's for you--was there anything you *didn't* complain about this Tour?!

Uncomfortable Announcer Commentary Award: it rather guts me to do this, but ex-Lanceman Christian Vandevelde so perkily commenting on Sky's creepily familiar robotic superiority in the Alps and Pyrenees without a hint of, well, anything, for days on end was a sight and sound to behold. What's this paranoid bull!@#$ about the press constantly besmirching your integrity all about again, Froomey?

Hissy Fit of 2015: sure, I'd like to've heard what Froomey yelled at Nibs after their little imbroglio, especially as Nibs discreetly suggested it was far too outre' for delicate ears to hear. This one's for Thibaut Pinot, completely blowing his cool at a routine mechanical and even losing it at the teammate who responsibly stopped to help 'im. Did you see Contador petulantly slamming $10,000 of equipment around when Peter Sagan offered 'im *his* bike? No--but by all means feel to throw an epic toddler tantrum for the cameras all over again!

Crash o' the Race: sadly, there *were* too many contenders this road-slick destructive disastrous year, though miraculously, the race organizers managed to keep from actively planting a pointless metal pole right in the middle of the course to bring down the riders. Poor Tony Martin, enjoying one day in yellow after a blazing near-win in the time trial then busting his collarbone into six different pieces within meters of the line. And of course, he got back up, climbed on his bike, and--with the help of his teammates, but still--brought the maillot jaune home. Allez allez for a speedy recovery, with that attitude I expect you to get it back next year!

Simp Overlord Decision of the Tour: it poured like hell during the entire LaCourse, turning the streets of Paris into a Slip'n'Slide and sending a good half the women's peloton skidding across the cobbles like drunken ice dancers. And what do the Tour de France race organizers do? Celebrate Anna Van Der Breggen's audacious solo attack for the win ahead of a surging chase, and then call "time" on the men's GC after the first pass of the finish line when the pavement was already drying out so Froome needn't roll over any dangerous remaining damp spots. Can we just give the women a *real* Tour de France already, and let those pampered princes in the men's race take their chances in the last 10 minutes of the whole shebang for all that dough they make?

Everybody Polka Award: yeah, whatsisface won the mountains jersey in the end. But who clawed his way into it beforehand, *and* won two stages this TdF to boot? That's right, Purito Rodriguez, baby. Puritooooooooooooooo--now let's see what you're gonna bring on in the Vuelta!

A Bicycle Built for Two (Well, Second) Award: Peter Sagan, you are *nothing* if not consistent this season. But for your sake, can you at least take a stage win sometime this year, before Oleg remembers how much he paid you to help out Mick and Kreuziger and to bring home a snazzy green t-shirt?

Reality Bites Consolation Prize: finally, before the post-race team-bus horsewhippings get underway, let's give a big round of applause *and* buckets o' credit aforethought to Tinkoff-Saxo boss Oleg Tinkov, who, before the grease was even off Contador's chain, had Alberto loudly proclaiming his one and *only* focus from now on is to bring the Tour de France home for himsel--uh, for Oleg next year. Go to hell, Oleg, the Giro's by far the more beautiful race--and this debacle is all your stupid fault anyhow!

Well, I just noticed I didn't do a sprint award, which in any case belongs to Andre Greipel. So let's pass out the prizes, say farewell to Paris, toast the Tour, and get on to the beautiful Vuelta a Espana--Puritooooooooooooooooooo!

No comments: