last night in the mountains tonight. Should be interesting.
Raf Majka ... what a year he has had. After a breakthrough last year where he did his first Grand Tour at the Giro d'Italia (finished 7th but was fighting for the young riders jersey most of the way through) ... he did the Giro again this year, and once again was really impressive. He was 2nd in the young riders jersey and finished well for someone so young.
He wasnt supposed to ride the Tour - 2 GT's in a row for a young kid is just too much ... but Roman Kreuziger who was supposed to be Contadors helper was suspended for blood passport issues just before the Tour, so Majka was a last minute call up.
He was pretty unhappy to be riding it actually ... and expressed his unhappiness pretty clearly.
Bet he is super happy now though 2 stage wins and the Mountains jersey will make up for it I am sure.
Other results - Nibali ... just keeps going and going.
I am surprised at the performance of Valverde this Tour. I really thought he would be much better. (Maybe he is clean after all ??? ... nah ... )
The world champ's will be interesting. Perfect for Rodriguez and Valverde, and at home in Spain both will be keen ... but JRod is way out of form after a very bad crash at the Giro and Valverde is way off his best after a really heavy early season. Neither look like they will have a shot at anywhere near peak form by then
(if they are tired now, there isnt time to have a break and then get back into shape for the worlds which are in mid-late September - so they will have to essentially just keep building ... but that is hard going)
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24-07-2014 11:17 #41
24-07-2014 11:20 #42
and a funny thing I read today
One of cycling's enduring superstitions is the so-called "curse of the rainbow jersey" - the unfortunate tendency of riders to have disappointing seasons while wearing the rainbow-striped jersey of world champion.
The abandon of Rui Costa, the Portuguese world champion who dropped out of the Tour with a case of pneumonia, has not only added to the mythology of this curse, but helped fuel talk of a new one. The so-called "curse of the prince's handshake."
Of five riders who shook hands with Prince William and his wife Kate at the Tour's ceremonial start in Leeds, none are still in the race:
- Mark Cavendish: Crashed out on Stage 1.
- Andy Schleck: Abandoned after Stage 3 with a knee injury suffered in a crash.
- Chris Froome: Abandoned after multiple crashes in Stage 5.
- Alberto Contador: Crashed out with a broken leg in Stage 10.
- Rui Costa: Abandoned before start of Stage 16 with pneumonia.
With next year's Tour due to start in the Netherlands, riders may well beware of any royal handshakes from the Dutch royal family before the race kicks off in Utrecht.
24-07-2014 14:41 #43
24-07-2014 17:54 #44
My fan-dom has encouraged me to get out and ride my bike though ... which I really enjoy and has been good for me.
I have always liked the Tour de France, but when Katie was a baby I was up at all hours of the night so I started watching more ... coz I was up and it was on ... and found that I really liked the rest of the season a lot more than the Tour.
Then I found some (online) friends to watch it with - who do race, and explained much more about what was going on and the tactics - and found that I enjoyed it a lot more than watching footy or cricket (that DH watches) ... so ...
27-07-2014 21:12 #45
27-07-2014 21:56 #46
Love Marianna Vos. She is INCREDIBLE.
and was hoping for something good from Chloe Hosking today too, but I guess it wasnt meant to be.
That is going to be a great event for Womens cycling in the future. I really hope it grows into something.
27-07-2014 22:17 #47
and today Vincenzo Nibali !!
A little tidbit - he has not lost time in any stage by any rider who has finished in the top 10.
He has not let anyone get anything ... not on cobbles, or descents or mountains or time trial - he beat them all at everything.
In my wildest dreams I would never have imagined Nibali winning this tour by 7 minutes - but he has certainly been great.
And happy for the Frenchies too - 2 ont he podium is awesome for them.
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27-07-2014 22:37 #48
27-07-2014 22:45 #49
perhaps ... but I am a fan so am prepared to overlook his rumoured connections with Michele Ferrari ...
tbh - I am fairly cynical, so think most of them have some issues in that area.
My contempt for Lance Armstrong (which is substantial) isnt because of drugs ...
and my distaste for O'Grady is due to how he handled things, and the fact that his confession didnt even last 24 hrs before it was proven to be a lie.
I can forgive the actual taking ... back then its the way it was. And sadly, I dont think its much different these days
28-07-2014 05:59 #50
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