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Thread: Le tour 2018

  1. #31
    One man.....one pie Moliere's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by creekster View Post
    I think it’s a Polish shoe company. As opposed to a shoe polish company! Hah ha. Sorry.

    Also, here is the Skunin video. For all you conspiracy fans.

    https://twitter.com/ordvoskin/status...944695296?s=21
    Oh snap!!

    "Discipleship is not a spectator sport. We cannot expect to experience the blessing of faith by standing inactive on the sidelines any more than we can experience the benefits of health by sitting on a sofa watching sporting events on television and giving advice to the athletes. And yet for some, “spectator discipleship” is a preferred if not primary way of worshipping." -Pres. Uchtdorf

  2. #32
    One man.....one pie Moliere's Avatar
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    Three big climbing days in a row with alpe d’huez on Thursday
    "Discipleship is not a spectator sport. We cannot expect to experience the blessing of faith by standing inactive on the sidelines any more than we can experience the benefits of health by sitting on a sofa watching sporting events on television and giving advice to the athletes. And yet for some, “spectator discipleship” is a preferred if not primary way of worshipping." -Pres. Uchtdorf

  3. #33
    It is NOT a monkey! creekster's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Moliere View Post
    Oh snap!!

    Interesting thought about the cobbles. For the last decade or or two the grand tour winners have been guys who can climb well and can time trial very well. It seems like in the days of pantani (e.g. doped to the gills) through Armstrong, time trailing was a little less important. A guy like Indurain, OTOH, lived for the ITT. The cobbles reward a different sort of rider; some time trialing prowess is good, but you have to be fairly strong and built for classics; little flyweights need not apply (I'm looking at you, Quintana). I sort of like them, but they inevitably lead to crashes, and sometimes inuries. But they are sort of exciting. I was listening to George Hincapie after stage 9 and he asserted that one of the problems with the cobbles is that teams tend to ride them wrong, treating them like a regular road surface. They come into corners too hot and ride to tightly together.

    This year there are both cobbles and a TTT, both of which have had some effect on the race overall. An interesting course. Much better than last year, I think.

    I dont think Froome was too much at fault. First, he was not in yellow, and so he really wasnt in the patron role. Second, I think the cobbles put everybody out of sorts a bit. Either way, Bardet is a team leader, and a french favorite, but he has not really shown the form so far this year to be placed in that GC contender role. At least not as I see it. Besides, as yoiu know, those sort of unwritten rules are always selectively applied.

    Can a mod help me out here? The quote code is in the correct place on my post as I see it but the final product shows up wrong. Thanks.
    Last edited by creekster; 07-17-2018 at 10:56 AM.
    PLesa excuse the tpyos.

  4. #34
    It is NOT a monkey! creekster's Avatar
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    btw, and for the record, what those guys were riding on are really Belgian Blocks, or bricks, which are quarried and cut to a fairly regular size and shape and offer a fairly flat surface. Cobblestones are rounded stones set into the road and are noether quarried nor shaped but retain their natural shape. They are very rough to walk or ride on. Within my experience, the French say Pavé for bricks/Belgian blocks.


    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cobblestone
    PLesa excuse the tpyos.

  5. #35
    It is NOT a monkey! creekster's Avatar
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    Another interesting day. First, I feel obligated to point out that Greg Van Avermaet put in a very non-Belgian effort and surprisingly held onto the Yellow Jersey. Afterwards, likely fearful that he had upset some sort of cosmic constant by successfully and surprisingly keeping the lead, he said something like “it will be gone tomorrow.” The entire pays bas sighed in relief. All kidding aside, his effort was great. One other GVA note: the riders will tell you that they are more concerned about teammates than country compatriots. And yet, GVA was shepherded up the last climb by Serge Pawels, who is not only a Belgian but, if my memory serves, is also a Flamand. They are NOT on the same team.

    Lawson Craddick, the plucky Texan who rides on despite having cracked his scapula in the feed zone on stage one, continues to raise a lot of dough for a new velodrome in Houston. As you may recall, Craddick pledged to donate $100 of his own money to the velodrome rebuilding fund (it was wiped out in the last big Hurricane, apparently) and invited others to help out. I never understood how this motivated him, since it was his own money, but there you go. In any event, many others heeded the call and to date, in addition to Lawson's own $1000, he has raised over $100,000 for the fund! At this rate, they will need to name the thing after him.

    The French finally have a winner this year as Juien Alaphillipe decisively dropped everyone on the final climb and won going away on the downhill to the line. He is a strong rider with wicked descent skills, and we may hear from him again. And it is nice to have somebody French to talk about besides Chavenel. Although, to be honest, I do miss the patented hopeful-but-always-doomed breakaways by little Tommy Voeckler, may his wagging tongue and unzipped jersey rest in peace. And lest the French get too full of themselves, and before the Belgians are too resigned to middling mediocrity, I will point out that Alaphillipe rides for Quick Step, which is a Belgian team. Go ‘Giques.

    Speaking of high fliers, did you catch the guy jumping his bike over the peloton today?

    Here is a clip. Notice he does it with no hands (or, as the French would say ‘No ‘ands!)

    PLesa excuse the tpyos.

  6. #36
    One man.....one pie Moliere's Avatar
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    I’m kind of pissed that my busiest week of the year at work lands during the week they are in the alps. Things might slow down a little on Thursday so I can watch d’huez but I will likely miss all of tomorrow. Even today I at least had the tour tracker up and was following along but then got involved in some fire drill at work and by the time things had calmed down the stage was over.

    Looks like I didn’t miss much. I’d love to see some separation tomorrow in the GC group.
    "Discipleship is not a spectator sport. We cannot expect to experience the blessing of faith by standing inactive on the sidelines any more than we can experience the benefits of health by sitting on a sofa watching sporting events on television and giving advice to the athletes. And yet for some, “spectator discipleship” is a preferred if not primary way of worshipping." -Pres. Uchtdorf

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    SPOILERS FOR STAGE 11

    AN epic stage today. Lots of real racing and team sky ends up grabbing the race by the throat.

    It was bittersweet at the very front and the very back, from my POV. I felt so nadly for poor Mikel Nieve. He had been in the lead group for the entire day. He soldiered on as the group dropped members until, on the final climb, he was all alone. He entered the final kilometer in the lead with something like 30 seconds (give or take) on the chasers. It was just about then that Thomas put on his real acceleration, as did Froome and Dumoulin. And then, with about 300 meters to go Thomas FLIES by Nieve. Nieve was resigned to a well-earned second on the day but, right at the line,. he gets caught by Froome and Dumoulin (the latter fo whom pipped Froome on the line for second). The look on Nieves face was very sad. A bitter pill to swallow.

    The other end of the race was just as bad. It was just a couple of years back when the biking world was ga-ga over Mark Cavendish and his lead out extraordinaire, Mark Renshaw. They were unstoppable. Cavendish was the Manx Missile and many people thought that Renshw was possibly faster. This year, they have descended from the mountain and now mingle with the average. on this mountain stage they both finished well outside the time limit and so were expelled from the race. Cavendish was something like 45 minutes after the main bunch, all by himself. Renshaw, along with Marcel Kittel, were only a little better. All three are going home.

    It was a great stage; if you recorded it, make sure to watch it.
    PLesa excuse the tpyos.

  8. #38
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    Quote Originally Posted by creekster View Post
    SPOILERS FOR STAGE 11

    AN epic stage today. Lots of real racing and team sky ends up grabbing the race by the throat.

    It was bittersweet at the very front and the very back, from my POV. I felt so nadly for poor Mikel Nieve. He had been in the lead group for the entire day. He soldiered on as the group dropped members until, on the final climb, he was all alone. He entered the final kilometer in the lead with something like 30 seconds (give or take) on the chasers. It was just about then that Thomas put on his real acceleration, as did Froome and Dumoulin. And then, with about 300 meters to go Thomas FLIES by Nieve. Nieve was resigned to a well-earned second on the day but, right at the line,. he gets caught by Froome and Dumoulin (the latter fo whom pipped Froome on the line for second). The look on Nieves face was very sad. A bitter pill to swallow.

    The other end of the race was just as bad. It was just a couple of years back when the biking world was ga-ga over Mark Cavendish and his lead out extraordinaire, Mark Renshaw. They were unstoppable. Cavendish was the Manx Missile and many people thought that Renshw was possibly faster. This year, they have descended from the mountain and now mingle with the average. on this mountain stage they both finished well outside the time limit and so were expelled from the race. Cavendish was something like 45 minutes after the main bunch, all by himself. Renshaw, along with Marcel Kittel, were only a little better. All three are going home.

    It was a great stage; if you recorded it, make sure to watch it.
    Sad indeed.
    Give 'em Hell, Cougars!!!

    For all this His anger is not turned away, but His hand is stretched out still.

    Not long ago an obituary appeared in the Salt Lake Tribune that said the recently departed had "died doing what he enjoyed most—watching BYU lose."

  9. #39
    Semper infra dignitatem PaloAltoCougar's Avatar
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    creek, be aware that Mrs. PAC and I always look forward to and appreciate your reports.

  10. #40
    One man.....one pie Moliere's Avatar
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    Default Le tour 2018

    So it’s basically Dumoulin vs the entire Sky squad?
    "Discipleship is not a spectator sport. We cannot expect to experience the blessing of faith by standing inactive on the sidelines any more than we can experience the benefits of health by sitting on a sofa watching sporting events on television and giving advice to the athletes. And yet for some, “spectator discipleship” is a preferred if not primary way of worshipping." -Pres. Uchtdorf

  11. #41
    It is NOT a monkey! creekster's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Moliere View Post
    So it’s basically Dumoulin vs the entire Sky squad?
    That's a good question. Sky was depressingly dominant today. It reminded me, in both good and bad ways, of the days of the Postie train. All that pre-race hoo-hah about Froome and his drug issues and then here we are, faced with Team Sky storming the alps like Hannibal, methodically cutting the heart out of every contender. At one point they had about 6 or 7 riders of the 45 or so remaining riders in the peloton. And later they had like 4 of the final 10 riders. And then Thomas takes off like he stole Skujin's mythical electric motor and Froome simply marks Dumoulin until the line. Such dominance. It could be because Sky has a team budget that is supposedly at least twice as large as the next largest budget (this is supposedly true, btw. Nibali was complaining about it yesterday and urged the UCI to adopt a salary cap type limit on team budgets to even things out). It could be because they are really good at doping. All against the backdrop of Dave Brailsford (thats SIR Brailsford to you, buddy) obnoxiously crowing about his team's superiority. So many unpleasant echoes of the past.

    I don't think Dumoulin will show much tomorrow and is not likely to end up on the podium. He burned all his matches today, as they say. Nibali, who has not looked very impressive, is right there at around 2:15 down on GC, and finished just a minute off the pace today. He might have been keeping a little in his tank for tomorrow's stage, which is going to be very difficult.

    The biggest and most interesting question is who goes for the stage tomorrow (and, by extension, the yellow jersey) between Froome and Thomas. All week Sky has said just how HAPPY they would be if Geraint was in yellow, and wouldn't it be WONDERFUL if Geraint took yellow, etc. And Froome said all the right things, albeit without much enthusiasm. But here they are, Thomas in yellow and Froome just 1:25 behind. And tomorrow is a stage with a winning bonus of 10-13 seconds and a Queen stage type finish at the top of Alpe d'Huez. Froome is going to want this stage badly, I would guess. And all Froome has done is win the last three Grand Tours. But Geraint Thomas, Froome's loyal and dutiful teammate, is in yellow. Can Froome attack him? If he does, will Thomas still work for Froome in the Pyrenees? This will be one of the more interesting stories tomorrow. I would watch those two, Nibali and Bardet. Bardet hasn't shown that much but he will want this stage as well. I suppose this is all true of Quintana, too, but I have watched that guy wilt too many times to pick him here. He has talent and lungs, but just cant quite take control at the key moments. Watch him prove me wrong.

    By the way, if you have never understood why some of us say Froome is so UGLY on the bike, watch the last 5k of today's stage. He looks fairly mundane until he was marking the accelerations of Dan Martin and Dumoulin, and suddenly he is all elbows and knees, thrashing around like he is drowning and doesn't know how to swim all while riding a bike that is too small for his frame. Truly ugly. But so effective.
    PLesa excuse the tpyos.

  12. #42
    It is NOT a monkey! creekster's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by PaloAltoCougar View Post
    creek, be aware that Mrs. PAC and I always look forward to and appreciate your reports.
    Nice of you to say, but these are really sort of cathartic release for me as no one in my house can stand to deal with me.
    PLesa excuse the tpyos.

  13. #43
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    Quote Originally Posted by creekster View Post
    SPOILERS FOR STAGE 11

    AN epic stage today. Lots of real racing and team sky ends up grabbing the race by the throat.

    It was bittersweet at the very front and the very back, from my POV. I felt so nadly for poor Mikel Nieve. He had been in the lead group for the entire day. He soldiered on as the group dropped members until, on the final climb, he was all alone. He entered the final kilometer in the lead with something like 30 seconds (give or take) on the chasers. It was just about then that Thomas put on his real acceleration, as did Froome and Dumoulin. And then, with about 300 meters to go Thomas FLIES by Nieve. Nieve was resigned to a well-earned second on the day but, right at the line,. he gets caught by Froome and Dumoulin (the latter fo whom pipped Froome on the line for second). The look on Nieves face was very sad. A bitter pill to swallow.

    The other end of the race was just as bad. It was just a couple of years back when the biking world was ga-ga over Mark Cavendish and his lead out extraordinaire, Mark Renshaw. They were unstoppable. Cavendish was the Manx Missile and many people thought that Renshw was possibly faster. This year, they have descended from the mountain and now mingle with the average. on this mountain stage they both finished well outside the time limit and so were expelled from the race. Cavendish was something like 45 minutes after the main bunch, all by himself. Renshaw, along with Marcel Kittel, were only a little better. All three are going home.

    It was a great stage; if you recorded it, make sure to watch it.
    I don’t like team Sky. How does someone like Kwiatkowski suddenly turn into a rider who climbs like Pedro Delgado. How does GB turn into the cycling power in the world. A fourth of the main peloton was team Sky on the final climb. Having Thomas and Froome as the two main contenders does make it interesting, will we have a Lemond Hinault type battle with teammates going after each other. I keep waiting for Quintana to show us what a great climber he is and tour after tour he just sits there and watches others make the moves. Tomorrow will be interesting.

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    Quote Originally Posted by RC Vikings View Post
    I don’t like team Sky. How does someone like Kwiatkowski suddenly turn into a rider who climbs like Pedro Delgado. How does GB turn into the cycling power in the world. A fourth of the main peloton was team Sky on the final climb. Having Thomas and Froome as the two main contenders does make it interesting, will we have a Lemond Hinault type battle with teammates going after each other. I keep waiting for Quintana to show us what a great climber he is and tour after tour he just sits there and watches others make the moves. Tomorrow will be interesting.
    I recently listened to a rebroadcast of a Freakonomics podcast entitled "In Praise of Incrementalism," and how rather than trying to hit a grand slam every time (as in investing, scientific discoveries, and other walks of life), one needs to accept that most great accomplishments occur in small steps over time, and that should be one's focus--not on one big score. To underline the point, they interviewed Sir Dave Brailsford who, after failing in his attempt to be a top pro cyclist (he joined a French team for a while), he resolved to succeed in cycling through others, and in the '90s he started to work on improving Great Britain's teams and later started Team Sky. He said rather than focus on making great improvements in any one area (e.g., strength, stamina, whatever), he decided to work on small improvements in all areas of cycling. I won't provide the details here, but one example was how they wanted to reduce team illnesses, so they brought in a surgeon to teach everyone on the team how to scrub and disinfect, a practice that perform not only on the humans but on their bus and other equipment. Several other examples of small improvements were mentioned. His interview is near the end of the broadcast and you might find it interesting. Once they started incorporated all these small, incremental changes, that's when Olympic gold and tour wins began to come in.

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    It is NOT a monkey! creekster's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by PaloAltoCougar View Post
    I recently listened to a rebroadcast of a Freakonomics podcast entitled "In Praise of Incrementalism," and how rather than trying to hit a grand slam every time (as in investing, scientific discoveries, and other walks of life), one needs to accept that most great accomplishments occur in small steps over time, and that should be one's focus--not on one big score. To underline the point, they interviewed Sir Dave Brailsford who, after failing in his attempt to be a top pro cyclist (he joined a French team for a while), he resolved to succeed in cycling through others, and in the '90s he started to work on improving Great Britain's teams and later started Team Sky. He said rather than focus on making great improvements in any one area (e.g., strength, stamina, whatever), he decided to work on small improvements in all areas of cycling. I won't provide the details here, but one example was how they wanted to reduce team illnesses, so they brought in a surgeon to teach everyone on the team how to scrub and disinfect, a practice that perform not only on the humans but on their bus and other equipment. Several other examples of small improvements were mentioned. His interview is near the end of the broadcast and you might find it interesting. Once they started incorporated all these small, incremental changes, that's when Olympic gold and tour wins began to come in.
    Sure. It was the washing. And the drugs. They helped, too.
    PLesa excuse the tpyos.

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    Quote Originally Posted by creekster View Post
    Sure. It was the washing. And the drugs. They helped, too.
    Yeah, I think he and the interviewer skipped over that part. Still, it was interesting to hear how many things a team manager has to address.

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    It is NOT a monkey! creekster's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by PaloAltoCougar View Post
    Yeah, I think he and the interviewer skipped over that part. Still, it was interesting to hear how many things a team manager has to address.
    I was kidding and I shouldn’t be so cynical. But I remember bruyneel saying the same sorts of things about the posties and team discovery. Their success was all about attention to detail, meticulous planning and superior training.
    PLesa excuse the tpyos.

  18. #48
    One man.....one pie Moliere's Avatar
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    So the strategy to winning le tour is to disinfect everything? Yeah, they aren’t doping
    "Discipleship is not a spectator sport. We cannot expect to experience the blessing of faith by standing inactive on the sidelines any more than we can experience the benefits of health by sitting on a sofa watching sporting events on television and giving advice to the athletes. And yet for some, “spectator discipleship” is a preferred if not primary way of worshipping." -Pres. Uchtdorf

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    Quote Originally Posted by Moliere View Post
    So the strategy to winning le tour is to disinfect everything? Yeah, they aren’t doping
    I'm looking more defensive of Team Sky and GB that I intend, but the point relating to disinfecting is that it's one of dozens of small changes Brailsford sought to improve, with the collective effect of incremental improvement across the board making a substantial difference overall. If by disinfecting they prevent at least one team member from dropping out or performing poorly due to illness, they're marginally better than those who don't.

    But each time doping comes up, I fondly remember sitting at a dinner in France on the eve of a major Gran Fondo (I stood next to Hinault prior to the start--not sure if I've ever mentioned that...). At the dinner I sat across from two writers for Velo News and I asked them how much doping was going on in cycling (or something similarly and clumsily worded). They gave diplomatic responses at first, but after my withering cross-examination they said that if one analyzes the time improvements over several years, the only rational way to explain the extraordinary improvement was performance-enhancing drugs. So, yes.

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    One man.....one pie Moliere's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by PaloAltoCougar View Post
    I'm looking more defensive of Team Sky and GB that I intend, but the point relating to disinfecting is that it's one of dozens of small changes Brailsford sought to improve, with the collective effect of incremental improvement across the board making a substantial difference overall. If by disinfecting they prevent at least one team member from dropping out or performing poorly due to illness, they're marginally better than those who don't.

    But each time doping comes up, I fondly remember sitting at a dinner in France on the eve of a major Gran Fondo (I stood next to Hinault prior to the start--not sure if I've ever mentioned that...). At the dinner I sat across from two writers for Velo News and I asked them how much doping was going on in cycling (or something similarly and clumsily worded). They gave diplomatic responses at first, but after my withering cross-examination they said that if one analyzes the time improvements over several years, the only rational way to explain the extraordinary improvement was performance-enhancing drugs. So, yes.
    PAC, don’t take me so seriously...or maybe you just wanted the chance to humblenrag about standing next to the Badger.
    "Discipleship is not a spectator sport. We cannot expect to experience the blessing of faith by standing inactive on the sidelines any more than we can experience the benefits of health by sitting on a sofa watching sporting events on television and giving advice to the athletes. And yet for some, “spectator discipleship” is a preferred if not primary way of worshipping." -Pres. Uchtdorf

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    Quote Originally Posted by Moliere View Post
    PAC, don’t take me so seriously...or maybe you just wanted the chance to humblenrag about standing next to the Badger.
    Ha, I take no one here seriously (!) and you're right about the brag, even though I've mentioned it countless times... The race director (the President of Look) had a picture taken of the three of us but sadly the photo has been lost. Otherwise, that would likely be my avatar; to hell with Lord Grantham.

  22. #52
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    Quote Originally Posted by PaloAltoCougar View Post
    They gave diplomatic responses at first, but after my withering cross-examination they said that if one analyzes the time improvements over several years, the only rational way to explain the extraordinary improvement was performance-enhancing drugs. So, yes.
    Take a look at this link:

    http://www.stickybottle.com/blogs/cy...es-alpe-dhuez/

    These are purportedly the fastest times in the history of bike racing for the ascent of Alpe d'huez. Everyone of them comes from the doping era. They start in the early 90s (this is when Lemond came back from his 2 year injury absence and said it felt like he was racing in sand compared to everyone else) and go through 2015. Thomas today rode up much slower than Pantani's time and i heard a report that his time doesn't even make the top 100 in history. Now, to be fair, Pantani's time was in a race that went from Grenoble to the Alpe, meaning there were no other climbs, and Armstrongs time was in a ITT, meaning it was the only ride of the day. Today, by contrast, Thomas went over two HC climbs before starting the Alpe.

    The article I linked says that Indurain was never tainted with drug accusations, but that is not strictly true. In fact, he has been spoken of as the first one to use EPO. You may recall that in the early part of his career he was a great ITT guy but not much good in the mountains until, like Armstrong, he suddenly gained an amazing climbing ability, almost like his blood could suddenly carry more oxygen to this muscles than it did before. EPO. but nothing has been proven. Still, Big Mig comes from a good but not great career and suddenly wins five TdFs in a row and then, as suddenly, gets off his bike mid-stage and disappears from the peloton.
    PLesa excuse the tpyos.

  23. #53
    It is NOT a monkey! creekster's Avatar
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    Well, could I have been more wrong about dumoulin? Let me answer that: No. I thought he would be toasted today. Instead, he almost wins the stage. Great ride. What an epic stage. Today was riveting. If you havent seen it, you should watch it. A couple of random thoughts:

    Rando one: Bike racers are tough. We often make fun of them for being scrawny. And they do look like starving children from the waist up. But these guys are tough. You have Lawson Craddick who finished in the top 50 today with a broken scapula. And you have Nibali, may his tour rest in peace, who finished in fourth place on the stage after falling with just under 4k to go and cracking a vertebrae! Rather than stay on the ground, which I would have done, he gets up, mounts his bike and races to the finish almost catching the leaders! AFterwards he was diagnosed with a cracked vertebrae and he has withdrawn from the Tour. This is a shame as he looked good today and was almost in a podium spot. The real tragedy is that his fall was apparently caused by his collision with a Gendarme motorcycle. Its not clear if it was the cop's fault or what happened, but it took place right where the barriers started and the spectators, motos, cars and racers all bottle-necked. Too bad.

    Rando two: The spectators are out of control. Did you see the guy who punched or slapped at Froome? It took place with about 3.9 miles left in the stage. The guys comes out from the riders' right and jabs his arm at Froome. Not good. it reminded me of the time Merckx was punched by an unhappy Frenchman. Happily, Froome was not really bothered as far as I could tell. I understand the guy was later arrested and given a stern talking to. But, in general, the race was chaotic. flares/smoke bombs (what on earth makes people think that is a good idea?) flags and banners draped across riders faces, and idots running alongside the bike rider. Worse, some of the running idiots do so in speedos. For example at about 3.6 miles to go there is some guy with nothing on but a flesh colored speedo type diaper thing running along. No one, and I mean not even this guy's wife, wants to see that. NO ONE. They should have arrested him too. Later on the stage, with around 2.5 miles to go or so, you can just catch sight of the well-behaved fans revenge, or the jerk's comeuppance. If you watch closely, you can see some yahoo running alongside the riders he runs into a Gendarme, who appears to horse collar the guy and throws him to the ground. I cheered when I saw it and replayed it a couple of times just for good measure. The thing is they need a lot more of that. Not sure why it seems to be getting worse; I blame the Russians.

    Rando three: Froome might be human, after all. He tried to attack in the final kilometers today and he just . didn't . have . it. It was the patented Froome explosion at the end of a high mountain stage, where he turns into a big flying elbow and knee machine and leaves everyone behind. Except this time, he didn't. He pulled out mayb 40 or 50 meters, and then just liek that, he was reeled in. I am not sure that Thomas excepted to win this stage or that he expected to beat Froome today. But it was clear that thomas had the legs and that Froome maybe had a few too many eye-tallion climbs in his legs to keep up. Dinner at the team sky table, after a thorough scrubbing of hands, of course, should be interesting.

    Rando four: Where have all the Sprinters gone? Yesterday Kittle and Cavendish and Renshaw dropped out. Today it was Groenewegen and Graviria and Greipel ands Zabel the Younger, not to mention Uran. A very tough day. There will be no one to race against Sagan in Paris.

    Tomorrow the caravan heads back down the Alpe to start in Bourg d'Oisans.
    PLesa excuse the tpyos.

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    Semper infra dignitatem PaloAltoCougar's Avatar
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    Thanks for both posts and write-up (and a tip of the helmet to you for the team hygiene crack).

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    It is NOT a monkey! creekster's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by PaloAltoCougar View Post
    Thanks for both posts and write-up (and a tip of the helmet to you for the team hygiene crack).
    Today I got a call from a friend/business associate who I havent spoken to for a while. After we finished the business part of the call she asked me if anything new was going on in my life and I told her it is July and so I am watching the tour. She hesitated and then honestly replied "I know, and I was a little reluctant to ask because last year I asked and you went off for about 20 minutes." Yikes. So I try to get it out of my system here.
    PLesa excuse the tpyos.

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    Quote Originally Posted by creekster View Post
    Today I got a call from a friend/business associate who I havent spoken to for a while. After we finished the business part of the call she asked me if anything new was going on in my life and I told her it is July and so I am watching the tour. She hesitated and then honestly replied "I know, and I was a little reluctant to ask because last year I asked and you went off for about 20 minutes." Yikes. So I try to get it out of my system here.
    I am glad you do it here. I subscribe to your newsletter.

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    One man.....one pie Moliere's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by creekster View Post
    Well, could I have been more wrong about dumoulin? Let me answer that: No. I thought he would be toasted today. Instead, he almost wins the stage. Great ride. What an epic stage. Today was riveting. If you havent seen it, you should watch it. A couple of random thoughts:

    Rando one: Bike racers are tough. We often make fun of them for being scrawny. And they do look like starving children from the waist up. But these guys are tough. You have Lawson Craddick who finished in the top 50 today with a broken scapula. And you have Nibali, may his tour rest in peace, who finished in fourth place on the stage after falling with just under 4k to go and cracking a vertebrae! Rather than stay on the ground, which I would have done, he gets up, mounts his bike and races to the finish almost catching the leaders! AFterwards he was diagnosed with a cracked vertebrae and he has withdrawn from the Tour. This is a shame as he looked good today and was almost in a podium spot. The real tragedy is that his fall was apparently caused by his collision with a Gendarme motorcycle. Its not clear if it was the cop's fault or what happened, but it took place right where the barriers started and the spectators, motos, cars and racers all bottle-necked. Too bad.

    Rando two: The spectators are out of control. Did you see the guy who punched or slapped at Froome? It took place with about 3.9 miles left in the stage. The guys comes out from the riders' right and jabs his arm at Froome. Not good. it reminded me of the time Merckx was punched by an unhappy Frenchman. Happily, Froome was not really bothered as far as I could tell. I understand the guy was later arrested and given a stern talking to. But, in general, the race was chaotic. flares/smoke bombs (what on earth makes people think that is a good idea?) flags and banners draped across riders faces, and idots running alongside the bike rider. Worse, some of the running idiots do so in speedos. For example at about 3.6 miles to go there is some guy with nothing on but a flesh colored speedo type diaper thing running along. No one, and I mean not even this guy's wife, wants to see that. NO ONE. They should have arrested him too. Later on the stage, with around 2.5 miles to go or so, you can just catch sight of the well-behaved fans revenge, or the jerk's comeuppance. If you watch closely, you can see some yahoo running alongside the riders he runs into a Gendarme, who appears to horse collar the guy and throws him to the ground. I cheered when I saw it and replayed it a couple of times just for good measure. The thing is they need a lot more of that. Not sure why it seems to be getting worse; I blame the Russians.

    Rando three: Froome might be human, after all. He tried to attack in the final kilometers today and he just . didn't . have . it. It was the patented Froome explosion at the end of a high mountain stage, where he turns into a big flying elbow and knee machine and leaves everyone behind. Except this time, he didn't. He pulled out mayb 40 or 50 meters, and then just liek that, he was reeled in. I am not sure that Thomas excepted to win this stage or that he expected to beat Froome today. But it was clear that thomas had the legs and that Froome maybe had a few too many eye-tallion climbs in his legs to keep up. Dinner at the team sky table, after a thorough scrubbing of hands, of course, should be interesting.

    Rando four: Where have all the Sprinters gone? Yesterday Kittle and Cavendish and Renshaw dropped out. Today it was Groenewegen and Graviria and Greipel ands Zabel the Younger, not to mention Uran. A very tough day. There will be no one to race against Sagan in Paris.

    Tomorrow the caravan heads back down the Alpe to start in Bourg d'Oisans.


    Totally agree on the fans. It was a fun stage but the crazy fans need to be reeled in by the less crazy fans.

    There is also a video of Nibali going down and it looks like some fans camera strap caught his handlebar after he tried to dodge a moto.

    I was right about dumoulin :swish:
    "Discipleship is not a spectator sport. We cannot expect to experience the blessing of faith by standing inactive on the sidelines any more than we can experience the benefits of health by sitting on a sofa watching sporting events on television and giving advice to the athletes. And yet for some, “spectator discipleship” is a preferred if not primary way of worshipping." -Pres. Uchtdorf

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    Members Only Dwight Schr-ute's Avatar
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    The Nibali crash really pisses me off. He finished so well that I didn’t even realize that there were bigger consequences until tonight. What a brutal race. I don’t know how these guys deal with the heartbreak when they have to pull out.

    Looks like Nibali’s crash was a two-fer. Right after coming through a flare cloud (not sure where these f’ers came from but I can’t imagine what a lung full feels like when grinding up hill) he gets a camera strap over his brake hood.



    Spain in July gets the Running of the bulls; France gets the Running of the bullocks. There was one guy in a very cheeky, red thong. But the even worse trend is the ones that drop back trou, exposing their bare arse and going for a jog. I was thinking that it would be beneficial to give the Motos salt guns to season these buns up. Fortunately, it seems they’ve been modest enough to keep the Col de Peyresourdes off my television screen.

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  29. #59
    One man.....one pie Moliere's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dwight Schr-ute View Post
    The Nibali crash really pisses me off. He finished so well that I didn’t even realize that there were bigger consequences until tonight.
    The more I think about it, I feel the same way. I was tracking the riders live and saw a note that nibali had crashed and then saw he had a finishing time close to the lead riders. I figured they had given him their time since the note said it was a moto incident, kind of like what happened to froome on ventoux last year or the year before, whenever it was.

    Come to find out, nibali got back on his bike and finished the climb with a broken vertebrae. I’m sure most of that was due to adrenaline, but still crazy. Reminds me of when contador crashed and broke his fibula only to continue for another hour or so before abandoning.

    But the flags, smoke bombs and running along side riders is out of place and likely ruined what could have been an ultimate podium finish for nibali.

    Still, that race was epic. I loved the point where all five lead guys were riding side by side at the top just waiting for someone to take off.
    "Discipleship is not a spectator sport. We cannot expect to experience the blessing of faith by standing inactive on the sidelines any more than we can experience the benefits of health by sitting on a sofa watching sporting events on television and giving advice to the athletes. And yet for some, “spectator discipleship” is a preferred if not primary way of worshipping." -Pres. Uchtdorf

  30. #60
    It is NOT a monkey! creekster's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Moliere View Post
    The more I think about it, I feel the same way. I was tracking the riders live and saw a note that nibali had crashed and then saw he had a finishing time close to the lead riders. I figured they had given him their time since the note said it was a moto incident, kind of like what happened to froome on ventoux last year or the year before, whenever it was.

    Come to find out, nibali got back on his bike and finished the climb with a broken vertebrae. I’m sure most of that was due to adrenaline, but still crazy. Reminds me of when contador crashed and broke his fibula only to continue for another hour or so before abandoning.

    But the flags, smoke bombs and running along side riders is out of place and likely ruined what could have been an ultimate podium finish for nibali.

    Still, that race was epic. I loved the point where all five lead guys were riding side by side at the top just waiting for someone to take off.
    Agree with you and Dwight. It makes me very angry. I can understand some of the enthusiasm, and I think the crazy crowds on some climbs are a big part of cycling. I will never forget the crowds in 2004 (or 2003?) when they did an ITT up Alpe d'Huez. It was insane. But flares? WTH is that all about? it ruins the spectacle for EVERYONE. I feel very badly for Nibali.
    PLesa excuse the tpyos.

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