Tuesday, July 21, 2009


I love the Tour this year. The Top 10 in the GC are so close! This has nothing to do with my own life but they're things I'm thinking about.

  • Mikel Astarloza's stage win. I love it when someone wins a stage of the Tour for the first time. It's the highlight of their career and you can feel their excitement and joy when they cross that line and punch the sky. As fun as it is to see the salute's people plan out (see: Vinokourov rocking the baby, Contador's point and shoot), it all seems a little too cool, too noncholant. I love the huge grins and the excitement and the hugging of the reporters he's that excited.
  • Lance Armstrong's comeback. When Andy Schleck attacked and brought along a bunch of the pack, including Bradley Wiggins, Contador, Andreas Kloden, and his brother Frank Shleck, Armstrong missed the acceleration boat and got left behind. But after a couple minutes away from the group, riding along with some other people, Armstrong launches his own attack and closes the gap back to the group full of Top 10 riders by himself. His acceleration was crazy. Almost Old Lance-like, but then... Old Lance wouldn't have been left behind in the first place. But he looked good.
  • Kenny Van Hummel, the Lanterne Rouge, is STILL in the Tour, 3:35.54 behind Contador and 45 minutes behind the guy in front of him. I love that he hasn't given up, even in the mountains. Tomorrow will be hellacious, I hope he makes it.
  • Jens Voigt's high speed crash. I hate watching people crash at high speeds. While Joseba Beloki (2004) was definitely the worst (slipping on melted tar, back brakes locking up, back tire popping off, slamming onto the pavement with your hip during a descent down a mountain and shattering your femur), this still sucks. Sometimes the riders like to take their hands off the bike for a little while, take a look around. Apparently Voigt chose the wrong time to do it, his bike hit a bump, and he went flying face first into the road at around 50mph, descending down a mountain. He was apparently knocked unconscious for a couple minutes after the impact. It's no fun losing
  • Cadel Evans is no good this year. Man. Come on. He was one of the favorites and is definitely just... not up to it this year. He's in 17th place, 7:23 behind Contador, and with no real way to make up that time. Disappointing.
One thing I'm sad about is that I don't get to watch the live coverage. I like Phil Ligget and Paul Sherwin better than the American announcers... but when did Bob Roll start pronouncing "Tour de France" correctly??

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