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« Answers | Main | Sometimes Rage Works »

September 28, 2007

Comments

susie b

Sara, you crack me up about George & I agree with you about CN's coverage of Chicken's drugtest. But, I guess if it's not on the list of banned substances, he was TECHNICALLY "clean". Why did it take til NOW for this to come out? L'Equipe, your're slippin! Anybody know if Dynepo was added to the banned list that came out recently?

I don't get the UCI at all! Isn't that damn pledge THEIR idea? And didn't ASO make everybody sign it before the TDF or they would have banned any rider that didn't? I am no longer a fan of Bettini. I'm not sure about Valverde's involvement in OP, but his resistance to proving his innocence speak volumes to me. And even though I have never been impressed by the UCI's words & actions, to watch the main cycling org be systematically castrated as it has been throughout the past year has NOT been a good thing. This sport desperately needs a POWERFUL organization that protects the riders & the sport. That any single race, even the TDF, can be MORE powerful than the sport's main organization is not only not good but part of the reason cycling is in such a mess right now. Maybe a top ASO person should be involved at a high level in the UCI. To not work together would then be self-defeating.

And boy, I would like to see a Tour of America. But, what "ex-pros" would have thought it is a great idea to have a 27 stage race where more than a THIRD of the stages are over 200 miles?! The cyclists look like prison camp survivors after the TDF & this thing is TWICE as long! And if all those "experts" were involved, why were they not present for the unveiling? And if this guy's been "working" on this since 2002, why did NO rumor ever surface? I mean, it's not like rumors & gossip are a part of the CYCLING world... ;)

Libby

Excellent closing paragraph! It is not nice to make coffee come out my nose.

debi

fabulous post sara, thanks. the cycling power's that be are reminding me quite a lot of our SA government. lots of snatching of toys, wailing, and running to mummy. as my mum used to always say: it'll all come out in the wash, dry your tears. looking forward to sunday - worlds AND SA vs USA world cup rugby!! YAY

Camille

I really am ALmost on my way out the door for my trip today but since I won't be back till the 6th (or 7th?) I wanted to send out a quick early Happy Birthday to SUUUUSIEEE on Thursday, October 4th. Have a great one, Susie! Just how old ARE you going to be, anyway???!! You're not inching your way toward a number that starts with a FIVE, I hope, God forbid... (***eeeeeeevil bwaaaahahaha laugh***)

HBD :) xo Camille

Theresa

Oh,Sara, what a great post!! I love the last paragraph, and T-Mobile wants them young so they aren't tainted already!! Not a bad idea. And maybe Michael Barry will have a good season next year with George to pal around with. Michael needs to stay well, and in one piece.

So the Chicken tested for something new! Well, the Bovine stuff was something new to me, so he's on the cutting edge of medicine!! Makes me feel a lot better about the last week of the Tour.

I think the Tour of America needs some work. Look how big Australia is, of course some of it is not inhabited. Maybe a Tour, that moves around to different states each year. Then it could be more reasonable.

cat

Sara, I love it when you tell stories. They are sooo funny! King Lance indeed.

And dincha just KNOW that Ras had some icky bugs under the rock when he was let go? So, he escapes on a technicality, but our dear FL is crucified because it just all looks too bad. Am I crazy or was it shown that 2 out of 3 TE ratios were out of range, but synthetic testosterone was never found? I know, I know this is such old news and why pick at a scab, but everytime I thought I had it straight, someone writes something different.

Ooo, ooo, I remembered something else I asked a while back: Sara or Cathy, can you direct me to a site/book/post that explains the racing org structure? I get confused about why the tours are divided up between Pro tour or somthing else, and what those 4 categories that were listed at the Tour of Missouri (Pro, Continental, etc) mean, how are they determined? I may not be able to keep track of kits, rider names and standings, but damn, I want to understand the structure!

Debbbiiii! So glad to see you post again. Your name was just mentioned yesterday as MIA and missed too! Welcome home.

Libby, Libby, libby you maka me laugh too much (love that dry wit)!

Barbara

I'd love to see a ToUSA, and I agree 27 stages with a lot over 200 miles is a bit extreme in the land of extremes. (Anything worth doing is worth overdoing?) What I don't get is why so many of you all think that nobody will watch for 4 weeks. Didn't we all commiserate about our TdF withdrawal pains at the end of July? Who didn't wish it would go on and on? I'd watch for 4 weeks, but I'm not sure our boys can survive it.

RipCurl

I agree with Barbara. I'd watch. But the big 11 mil purse and grueling length has an aire of 'Stunt'. Besides overlapping other significant events and the fledgling ToM, it seems over zealous/over ambitious and I'm pretty sure the riders wouldn't be thrilled that late in the season. One of the Velonews diary guys said as much of the ToM and the end-of-season emotion virus felt throughout the peleton. But, yeah, I'd watch. I'd venture that race organizers in competing timeslots might be apt to sabotage efforts and incite infighting. Is Mark Burnett behind any of this? Sensationalist extraordinaire!

janann

You're both right -- I'd definitely watch! I just don't see much possibility that this race (as it stands) could really come off due to some of the reasons Rip listed.

.....interesting news about the Chicken. I'm thinking we'll hear more about that.

susie b

I possibly might watch a 4 week race in JULY but not September - too much other stuff on TV with the start of the new TV season. Plus, even though I go into my PTD after the Tour, I have to admit I'm usually whipped just watching & reading nothing else but the Tour for 3 straight weeks. If it lasted another week, I'd be a mumbling idiot. There CAN be too much of good thing. But my main problem is for the cyclists. It's just too much! Plus, for a sport trying to escape from the drug cesspool, is it a good idea to have a race where you'd probably NEED something just to keep going? I would love to see a ToA some day, one where all the top teams come even if it's just due to the big money. However, that can be a doping temptation too.

But of course, RipCurl! It's SURVIVOR on a bike! Should have known from the "meeeeellion" dollar top prize. :) Since you are our very own Century Man, what do YOU think about 10 of the stages ranging from 200-260 miles? I just can't believe any former pro "advisor" wouldn't have put the kibosh on that right away.

And thanks Camille! I'm one of those people who held on to '34' for about 10 years & not too very long ago finally admitted to being in my 40s. That's all you're gettin! :)


I am a bit giddy this afternoon as I fell across some surprising news. I checked my investments for the 1st time in months & they've zoomed a bit! About time. Most of my funds still haven't fully recovered from the debacle that was the year 2000. Thank goodness I'd cashed out a lot to buy my house a couple years before that or for the past 7 years I'd have been experiencing my own Great Depression... ;). I started investing in the stock market via mutual funds in 1984. All with the same company, which until the late 90s was called '20th Century'. Their current name is 'American Century'. Yes, I invest where LANCE is now the pitchman. About fell over when I got stuff in the mail a few years ago "from Lance Armstrong"/American Century. I'll confess it tickles me. Plus, I love his ads for them, both in print & on TV. Nifty. But, no, I can't bankroll a team with it, although maybe I could foot the bill for their gloves or socks.... ;) Team Gladiator has to wait for Lotto & nothing on that front since January. But the other night I came across a bunch of shows back to back on TV about lottery winners & how it has changed their lives, etc. I'm taking it as a "sign"... :)

And just have to tell you all this because it cracked me up. I got the weirdest "thank-you gift" in the mail yesterday from TV Guide for "being a long-time subscriber". It was a jar opener. I keep imagining that meeting where someone goes "Yeah, let's send out JAR openers! That will show we value our subscribers!" Hmmmph. Just print what's on the damn TV during the weekend DAYS like you used to & I'll be happy! Anyway, the thing came in one of those plastic-type envelopes where you can sort of feel through it. I kept trying to guess what it was before I opened it. I was way off, I can tell you that. ;)

susie b

Can't shut me up today! I just read some new articles on CN. Well, it seems Levi AND Johan AND Alberto are all going to Astana. Is this a sign Levi has given up on winning the TDF for himself? But man, how can you not place an early bet on THAT team for the 2009 Tour win? Who else will be on that team besides Kloden? Hey, was that an Australian WHINY WAIL I just heard? Pooorrr Cadell.

The other thing I read on CN is about the Rock & Republic team. Oh yeah, how can DRUGS ever be a problem in THIS sport. The team's owner, Michael Ball says "He's not paying for 2nd or 3rd place. They either win or they're FIRED". No pressure there. BTW, what kind of contract is that? Sounds like a TV contract, where the actor can't leave if HE wants to but can be fired for whatever reason by the show's producers/network. Ball also then does a little trash talkin' about Slipstream - "they're backing into Europe... & that's not how I do things". Alrighty then. I swear this guy reminds me of the villain team owner in THE TOUR. Horner is going here?! That means he won't be at the Tour next year! No video diary with Chris & Neal! :(

RipCurl

Okay, up until just now, I hadn't looked at ToA details beyond the broad strokes. I just looked a bit more closely.

200 miles is really long. At 25mph that's 8hrs. Of course, the peleton can go a bit faster, but these 200+ mile ToA stages are very aggressive distances and in some cases back to back. I already need a nap. The Grand Tours become a vicious cycle of race, massage, eat, sleep, eat, race, massage, etc. These stages wouldn't allow for ANY down time. They're asking these guys to finish out the season with this kind of grind? MAYBE I'm underestimating the willpower of our beloved athletes and the lure of $$$, but this race seems over the top and, as scripted, promises Survivor, not cycling. ToA would do better to shave off a week and spare a few miles. I just want a quality grand tour on home soil, not some massive publicity stunt.

Theresa

That's why I thought moving it around the regions to different areas each year would be better. And at that time of year, motivation is going to be key. The money doesn't matter if you can't finish the race!!

Theresa

Okay, I just read VN "Foaming Rant" by Patrick O'Grady. And I like the way he thinks!! Throw in some money for the Tour of Utah, That's 4 Tours, 4 different states, and 4 regions. I think that's a much better way to spend 13 million dollars on cycling,too!!!

Amy

Patrick O'Grady makes some great points, but I'm ashamed to say I'm happy the Tour organizers included Indianapolis on their list of routes. Even better, it's towards the beginning, so none of the riders will be dead yet!

Amy

Did you all read this about Rasmussen's non negative test at the Tour?

"AFLD President Pierre Bordry cautioned, however, that the sample does not qualify as a positive, because the substance in question is a new version of the drug EPO that relies on human erythropoietin rather than the more established version which is derived from the ovaries of Chinese Hamsters."

Am I really tired or did that say that epo is made from the ovaries of Chinese Hamsters?

Janann

OMG, Amy - I'm rolling with laughter!! I hadn't read that.....but now I'll have to find it.

cat

Hamster ovaries?? Do you know how small their brains are, never mind their ovaries? Ho many damn ovaries would it take to get enough EPO to get a rider through the TdF? Oooo there's a joke in there....

http://www.sciencedirect.com/science?_ob=ArticlURL&_udi=B6T3C-4HDG94N-5&_user=10&_coverDate=04%2F20%2F2006&_rdoc=1&_fmt=&_orig=search&_sort=d&view=c&_acct=C000050221&_version=1&_urlVersion=0&_userid=10&md5=3cbd120eae2f80ff05c23e8a6371c0cc

Kathleen

I was just perusing through the comments on the last few posts when I saw..."Hamster ovaries" - WTF??

LOL!!!

So help me I LOVE this blog. This gang is unbelievable. Thank you Sara for keeping the playground open and full of challenging apparatus! I think I just fell off the monkey bars.

Theresa

Hamster ovaries???!!! OMG. I thought they were only good for helping make hamster babies!! Shows what I know about EPO!!!

Amy, I know how you feel on the ToUSA; St Louis is in the first 10 days.....:)

susie b

And I thought hamster ovaries were a delicacy in Asia... ;)

Had a interesting time getting ready for work this morning. For the past year, since I've worked Saturdays, I've turned on VH-1 to listen to the Top 20 Video Countdown, etc. Yeah, for the 1st time in 12 years, I actually KNOW some of these songs! Whoo-ee. Anyway, are there any phrases that you've said/written all your life, even though no one else you knew did? And then suddenly hear them in songs or splashed across the TV?!! Because it's weird. For example, I've listened & loved that Avril song "When You're Gone" for months now, partially because a line in her chorus is what I wrote an ex over 15 years ago & it's still killer - "the pieces of my heart are missin' you". I didn't even mind that somehow Avril got hold of my old journal/letters. ;) Today I saw the video for the 1st time. Song's better. Still love that line.

The other "blatant theft" (;) of my personal phrasing is from Bruce Springsteen of all people. Did you all know he's coming out with a new album? I had no idea so was quite surprised to see a brand new video. A guy we all used to know must be wetting his pants. Anyway, BS ripped off "radio nowhere" from me. :) I've used it for years to describe a radio dead zone between the UM/Washington area & my home farm. You have to travel over 2 mountains & the radio can't hold a signal as you crest one mt, go into the valley & go up the next mt. I've called that area Radio Nowhere since I was 14. Weird again. Anyway, I have no idea what Bruce's song was about because I couldn't understand what he was singing. His habit of NOT OPENING his mouth to sing has apparently worsened with age. ;)

And even though he didn't "lift" anything from me (;), that Chris Daughtry is certainly becoming a bonafide huge star. I think's he had 2 giant hit singles already (?) & this new one will be too. This guy must already be the biggest male success to come out of American Idol. Blows away the 2 guys who actually won & he's passed Clay by now. Wonder if that makes the producers of that show happy or upset? I was never a huuuuge fan of Chris when he was on the show but I do like his songs now.

Oh & I heard a new song by Alicia Keys. "No One". I like it but was not impressed with the arrangement. It could blow you away & it doesn't. I still love her smash song "Fallin". What a musical hook! Infectious. You couldn't stop singing or humming it for months!

Ok, enough. Gotta get back to work. It's all the hamsters' fault...

Philip

I returned from Ibike on a redeye last night. My body is home but my brain is not quite here yet. Wish I had the connections like CMehl to hang with the cool crowd! I was able to go to cross vegas and see some of the crit before I had to jam to the airport to catch my redeye. I had the fortune to catch a talk by the original 7-eleven team members on their tour de france experiences. There was Carmichael,Kiefel,Phinney,Roll,Schuler, and Stieda questioned by Eustice. It was held in the Festina watch store in Caesars palace! There was lots of exquisite hors d'ouevres and wine/beer. So of course I had my dinner and drinks! The guys were all somber until Bob Roll showed up and all got jovial. There memories made me realize how young and innocent they were and how they are just normal guys! I also had the great pleasure to talk with Saul Raisin a couple of times. He said "I would be honored to give you my book and sign it to you" after I had talked to him about my experiences living for a while with my mother after her hemoragic stroke. I was touched that he was so caring. He was such a sweet nice kid. I truly hope he can pull off the return to the peleton. I had toyed with the idea of trying to get in to the industry crit before the pros but I am glad I didn't. It was all recently past pros and the course was in and out of the shadows through the Mandalay bay parking lot. I can barely read a menu these days so it would have been hell trying to see the course let alone keeping up. In retrospect I am sure I would not have been able get in and there were several crashes that made my recently healed skin crawl! Mario C even crashed! It certainly is cool to see all the famous past and present racers but Vegas is such a surreal place! With so much going on and trying to keep track of all the product I wanted to check out, it became scary to remember where in the parking garages I had parked my rental car at the end of each day!. I would stroll through the area I expected and keep pushing the horn button! I would be really bummed that I was losing my eyes and mind if I was able to remember all those bad experiences!

cat

susie, try and Google or You Tube "Feist." Bouncy, cute, good hooks, great guitar work, good back up band, AND you will be in with the young teen crowd!! She does that catchy iPod ad ("1234").

Kathleen, this is THE BEST group of blog commentors ANYWHERE, and the bestest blog of it's kind (it's a rarity actually). We used to hang at MD's and here, but he kicked us out. Now he's boring. (can't remember if you know about MD or not). Wait till something gets Waddy, Larry, susieb and Camille going. Add in some woofdawg and Matt and you've got an interesting stew cookin'. (sometimes we make Sara blush)

cat

BTW, did I say HI HI HI debi? We missed you.

Amy

OMG! On Yahoo Cycling News, there is a headline that says "Landis signs two year deal with T-Mobile." *BUT* when I clicked on it, it was a story about George signing with T-Mobile. Freudian slip by one of the Yahoo sports guys? Hmmmmmmm.

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