Ah youth!

July 23, 2007

Why attack on the last kilometer of a climb with a long descent to follow? If you are a 24 year old Alberto Contador, the question is more like “Why not?”

If these last couple of stages do not ignite a desire to attack your favorite climb then I feel bad for you. This is about as good as it gets. Gone is the cerebral tour ridden by calculating riders who always make the right decisions. Welcome to the Tour where anything can happen and usually does.

Sometimes you just have to go with your gut.



July 23, 2007

I thought that it was impossible to bonk one day then head out on a breakaway the next. Isn’t that what happened today?

Alexander Vinokourov lost 28 minutes yesterday after a spectacular explosion. One bigger and badder than last year’s Stage 16. Today, he attacked right at the start, went on a suicide breakaway to win today’s stage by more than five and a half minutes.

I’ve seen this script before. Where was it????

I have yet to hear the comments of those who use last year’s less spectacular turnaround as evidence of wrongdoing. Do they think today’s performance can not be true? Are they searching the woods for Harleys?

I believe this year’s and last year’s performance was a combination of daring, luck, and skill.  The only difference between last year’s break and this year’s is that in 2006 the decision not to chase was wrong as it cost the race.  This year the decision was correct as it did not.

Come back with your shield or on it

July 23, 2007

Before going into battle, legend has it that Spartan mothers would send their sons off with this directive. Give it everything, be prepared to die trying. It seems that this year’s participants have taken this Spartan expression to heart.

With the podium wide open, the first stage of the Pyrenees played out like it was the only stage. Vinokourov paid dearly for his effort on Sunday. Cadel Evans rode until he could ride no more and came across the finish line on his shield. Alberto Contador was brilliant. Seeing someone that graceful on a mountain is something to behold.