Monday, February 29, 2016

Guts! Glory! Cobbles! Numbnuts on Motos Hitting Cyclists!: the Classics Take Off

Like a Rock: look, it's very nice watching the fast-men and -women stretch their legs in the desert--in the "stupefying boring all day every day 'til the last two kilometers" sense--but let's face it, cycling season *really* begins when the tires hit the cobbles, and we're already off to a stellar--and unfortunately intermittently disastrous--start, as Greg Van Avermonster pips World Champ Peter "Who Cares? I'm Adorable!" Sagan at Omloop as the other teams that should've been going for it just bitched and moaned at each other behind, and, even better, Belgian (natch) Jasper Stuyven shows the kind of thrill-a-minute chutzpah that's been completely lost in the recent joyless, highly-clinical, by the numbers, dirt-dull rash (and it *is* a rash) of Chris Froomes frankly indelicately making out with their power-meters, by making an insane solo go-for-it a full 30k from the line to surprise damn near everybody except apparently himself in this past weekend's Kuurne-Brussels-Kuurne. Woot woot woot--can we get some *more* of you boys to take your eyes off the computers and remember why you must've started riding in the first place from now on?

Sunday, Bloody Sunday: meantime, it's also been a !@#damn crashfest out there already, with Christina Watches' Arnold Fiek taking a terrifying 4-story plunge over a guardrail at the GP Lugano into the freezing Lake Lugano, miraculously escaping--and swimming to safety--with only a few bruises and unfortunately a hairline fracture that'll take a several weeks to heal up, and, of course, yet *another* oblivious stupid support vehicle--this time, a medical support moto fer chrissakes--plowing into a rider, this time the luckless Stig Broeckx, whose BRIGHT RED KIT AGAINST A BLACK TARMAC ROAD SURFACE apparently rendered him completely invisible to A TOTAL SPACE-CADET RECKLESSLY INATTENTIVE MOTORIZED DANGEROUS ASSHAT. Team Lotto-Soudal, of course, has protested vigorously on behalf of poor multi-fractured Stig--whose Classics season is perforce completely tanked--demanding "concrete measures" be taken for rider safety, when, for my money, what "concrete" these riders really need nowadays is a !@#damn four-sided mobile CONCRETE BUNKER around each and every one of 'em just so some moron doesn't run directly over them like they understandably weren't EXPECTING A RIDER TO BE IN A GIANT EASILY VISIBLE PELOTON IN A RACE DAY YOU TOTALLY KNEW ABOUT INCLUDING THE RACE ROUTE BECAUSE YOU WERE !@#ING HIRED TO GO ALONG RIGHT IN THE MIDDLE OF IT WITH THE REASONABLE EXPECTATION YOU OUGHTN'T TO DECIMATE ANYBODY. Jaysus--anyway, speedy recovery guys!

Round and Round: finally, even trackside has seen a pile of thrilling action, with American Evelyn Stevens just smoking the women's world hour record by over a kilometer even as she was weaving like hell with the strain towards the end, and Brad Wiggins--well, whining about some stupid !#$ I can't bear to hear another word of, *again." Go Evelyn--come to think of it, maybe stop for a minute, you've freakin' earned it!

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