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« Gratitude | Main | Are the Olympics Over Yet? »

July 31, 2008



Sara, as I was halfway through your post I was intending to ask you whether you were going to do any more work for Pedal or USCR -- and then a few sentences later you answer before I can even ask :) I so glad to hear that you'll be continuing to work on some cycling stories/race reports because you are really damn good at it.

That is a HUGE bummer for Cadel to be out of the Olympic TT! Having that race without one of the top TT guys in the business is like......well, having the Tour without 2 of the top 3 riders from last year ;) I do feel extraordinarily bad for him, though. After coming SOOOO close in the Tour and finishing with what was not his best TT ever, I imagine that he was really looking for some redemption in Beijing. And I just like to have all of the major contenders racing so that we have the best race possible to watch.

Wow, if Astana keeps Kloden & Horner along with Levi & Contador, next year's Tour will be a battle of the super teams. Oooh I feel the anticipation already!

Thanks for the Ryder link - he gives a nice interview and I'm happy to hear that he'd headed to China with plans of having FUN!

Also saw on VN that Lance is registered for Leadville (again). Wish Floyd could be there - *that* would be a battle.


Just got to thinking Sara that you could do some EXCELLENT race reports from the roads of Missouri ;)


Hi Gang! :-)

Hey T - I heard from The Bird that Brad is here this weekend at Elk Grove! I'm heading over tomorrow night for the TT and I will try and get a pic for ya! Horner was here this past Sunday at the Chicago Criterium but I was suffering something awful from over doing it Saturday so I didn't go see it. I'm hoping to go to the TT of Elk Grove and also the crit stage on Sunday. Should be good. The only garMEN rider will be Daniel Holloway (who did pretty well at Tour of PA). Hoping Brad and some others are there to watch race. I am not sure on how many I will get to meet or even try to Friday night as it's been a really long week this week being the first back but I will try and get some pics and put 'em up on my blog.

Who's all going to be here for Downers? I know T for sure. Cat? Janann? That should be fun! I'm hoping C might be there as he will be home by then but could be a wee bit tired from this past month of racing. :-) We will have to see!

Then it's TOM! I am getting more and more excited about it. Can't wait to make the official plans for it and figure out the when and where and with whom details. :-) George will be there, I'm pretty sure Brad. Will and C are both scheduled. Fun times!

I'm off to attempt some sleep. Hopefully the heat this weekend won't hurt the Elk Grove race and hopefully I'll get some good pics! Have a good night!


If Brad is at Elk Grove, then I hope he hangs around and tries to get the Stars and Stripes jersey again!
Nikki, we are looking forward to DG, janann is coming(IF Grandma and Grandpa can watch the baby). And Cat's there, of course!
If you see Brad at Elk Grove, tell him I heart him!! And I'd like to meet Bird too, and Jeremy Powers!

Sara, I so glad to hear your voice again on a sort-of regular basis. And yah Cathy and Sara, we will have IA members on the ground at the ToM...Cathy are you coming to MO??


T - you so have mail! Brad is here and what a really great guy. I am so happy I've finally met him. I met Bird too. He and Matty Rice are really TALL.

Cathy - I have to share that Chris Horner is a total sweetheart!!! I wished him luck while he was warming up and he rolled over and I asked if he had a quick sec for a pic and he asked if he could get me after he rode. I of course said yep but figured I might not see him again until Sunday. Then afterwards he was there and asked - how about that pic? I've always liked him and now I totally heart the man. Complete sweetheart to everyone there. His smile is one of the best. AND he finished 2nd in the TT tonight too. I have the podium in my pics to share too.

I will have pics up hopefully tomorrow on my blog if not linked over to my race report I'm working on. I had a great time and can't wait to see T and Cat and hopefully Janann at Downer's. This stuff is always even better with friends there to share!


Bummer.:( Chris Horner broke his collarbone....I guess he won't be at Downer's Grove!
I wonder how many collar bones , the peleton breaks in a yr?

They do heal fast, don't they?

Brad had two good finishes. The TT and the road race, that had the crash... Thank God he's in one piece!


T - Brad won today's stage!!! I was so excited for him! The Bird was in the breakaway most of the day too. It was a good day today for Jelly Belly!

I will have my blog updated shortly with pics and such. :-)


Hi everyone! Been on a long road trip from SB to Oregon, as our oldest son moved up there and we had to take stuff to him. It was great to see him but so hard to say goodbye. We won't see him for quite awhile now and we've never been away from him, so I'm sad, but happy for this new adventure he's on. His girlfriend got a great job as an on-air new anchor in Coos Bay and it's a wonderful opportunity for her, and he was able to go with her so it was cool. We also went to Crater Lake National Park--very pretty and interesting. But we drove 2100 miles and I am pooped. Then to log on and find out Horner is broken, which means no Vuelta...yikes, I can barely stand it.

But the truly tough part is that some of my husbands numbers don't look right in his post-cancer checkups, so tomorrow he needs to start more tests. I am actually scared to death...the numbers now look higher than they did the first go-around and if the cancer is back then his treatment options are more limited because of the choices we made the first time. The big hope is that the lab results were wrong--the re-test is tomorrow morning. Please keep him in your prayers!


I forgot to say that Astana isn't racing TOM, so no, I won't be there but can't wait for some USA racing action!


OH Cathy, I'll definitely be keeping you and your husband in my thoughts and hoping that the tests come back with positive news! Please let us know. You've got to be all tied up inside. Positive vibes coming your way....

I can't even imagine sending a daughter or son away like that, even though you're of course happy for them to get out on their own adventure, it would nevertheless be so very difficult for me. Because my daughter is still so young it seems like there is a lot of time, but EVERYone that I know tells me over and over that the time goes by in a flash.

Saw Mamma Mia tonight finally and really LOVED it! I missed a couple of the songs that are included in the stage show, but thought that they did an excellent job of adapting to film and casting. FUN!

Sounds like you had a great time, Nikki! I'll have to visit your site and take a look when I have a minute. We were at my in-laws for the weekend so I'm trying to get unpacked, organized, and ready for the week. BIG bummer for Chris Horner (and all of Astana). I would've loved to see him race.

susie b

Cathy - my thoughts & prayers are with you & your family & any thoughts non-Olympic related for the next 3 weeks will be for you. Please keep us updated.

Speaking of the Olympics. You know how athletes carbo-load before an event? Well, I work & sleep-load before my 'Olympic viewing experience'. I also print out every Event & TV schedule I can find (have about 5 now, totaling a 4 inch stack of papers). I don't know how much ya'll are aware but in a stroke of extreme irony, NBC's 2008 Olympic coverage will be on freakin STEROIDS! 3600 HOURS! More hours than EVERY other Olympic broadcast thru the years COMBINED! On NBC, MSNBC, CNBC, USA, Oxygen, Telemundo & streaming live on It's so much even *I* can't grasp it all. There will basically be televised Olympic coverage 24 HOURS A DAY! It will make the Tour Tomb seem a vacation at the beach! :) :) Just breathe into the bag, susie.....

What I need in my house are 3-4 TVs lined up on 1 wall & all set on the various Olympic channels. Although, I think during the Primetime evening hours, only NBC itself will be broadcasting. You think I'm kidding about the 'Susie Cineplex', but I'm kicking myself for not thinking ahead! I just didn't know there would be THIS much coverage on multiple channels at the same time. For the past frickin year I checked NBC's website EVERY damn week to see the TV schedule & they never said much. Til last week! Maybe, just maybe I'll be able to see more than 1 or 2 of the high-jumpers, hammer throwers & rhythmic gymnasts (yes, the ones with the ribbons, balls, hoops, etc, OH, be quiet!) strut their stuff.

On my Web Favorites list, I've gathered & placed next to each other various Olympic websites - NBC, SI, WPost, Balt Sun (& special M Phelps/Katie Hoff page), USA Today &'s John Walters' Beijing Blog. But if anyone finds any other good ones, please link 'em here.

BTW, Christian Vande Velde is doing an Olympic Blog for USA TODAY. He's written 1 post so far, right after he got back to Girona from the Tour. Comments CAN be left.

The Opening Ceremonies begin this Friday 8/8/08 at 8:00 PM eastern time. According to my Event Schedule, the Men's Cycling Road Race will start at 11:00 PM (eastern), which I think means it will be streamed live online & shown via taped coverage on NBC, possibly on the morning of the 9th.

And WHY, Susie, you ask, do you need so MANY Event & TV shcedules. Well, I'll tell ya. There is not one Event or TV schedule that is perfect. For example, has a MUCH better Event schedule to print out than NBC's, BUT I've already found an error. The SI schedule says it is the Cycling Men's ITT on 8/8, when I believe it is REALLY the Road Race. And the problem with NBC's listings is that you have to go to EACH TV CHANNEL for EACH DAY & print & then they list some events, followed with the words dreaded by all who try to schedule their OWN life around fave events : "and many more". HATE that as you don't know if the event YOU want to see is included or not! Just list what the hell you're going to broadcast in a certain chunk of time. Is that so freakin HARD?!! Breathe innnnnn....breathe outttttt....

The 1st week's Primetime coverage will be dominated as usual by swimming & gymnastics. A-OK with me as I love both. Here's the lastest news/gossip : Paul Hamm, the USA gymnast that won All-Around Gold in Athens had to pull out of the Games just last week. Boo-hoo for the USA, as he was our best chance for an Overall medal & would have helped to get a Team medal. Without him, the men's team is not that strong. Unlike the women's - the current World Champions with Shawn Johnson & Nastia Liukin leading the way. Chelsie Memmel, the 2005 World Champion, recently hurt her ankle over there in Practice, but today's news says she's "better", so fingers crossed. On the Phelps Phront - Michael & the rest of the US Swim team just came over from Singapore where they'd been training for the past week or so. Michael's sporting a mustache which will be looooooong gone before he sticks his pinky-toe in the pool for his 1st Heat. :)

And BTW, we here at the IA, have got the "homefront" covered for various athletes. Michael & Katie Hoff of course are from my own 'bursting at the seams with pride' state of MARYLAND. Cute as a button & strong/perky as Mary Lou herself is Shawn Johnson from Janann's IOWA. Ever so graceful Nastia Liukin is from Camille's TEXAS. And I'd guess at least a THIRD of the entire USA Olympic team is from Cathy, Matt, Greg, & Paul's CALIFORNIA. Besides CVV from ILLINOIS, I don't know of any others from the Midwest at this moment - my bad. Same for the Great White North. I'm in catch-up mode as we speak. If there's someone for sure should be on my watch list, let me know!


Hey Susie B, who to add to your watch list From your neighbout to the North, ckeck out Megan Metcalfe, Kevin Sullivan, Tyler Christopher - runners all. And because no Canadian will be running the marathon, my fave is American Brian Sell. Dathan R and Ryan Hall get all the attention (deservedly so), but I'm rooting for Sell. I think you'd like him when you "get to know him".


Hey Susie, Thomas Finchum and David Boudia are divers from Indiana. I think they do synchronized and platform dives.


More tests today for Rob and should know more real soon....thanks for keeping us in your good thoughts.

Beach volleyball: Todd Rogers is from Santa Barbara and his partner is from nearby Ventura I think. Plus the gals Misty May and Kerri Walsh are just tremendous...LOVE BEACH VOLLEYBALL!!!

And be sure to always check out Tim De Waele's Olympic images--his site is tdwsport i think and go to the free images area. He's amazing!


I'm going to have to get back to you on this but there are a LOT more Texans than that one meeeeasly one you named, Ms. Sooz. I shall round up a list of them and return lay-tah! (you were baiting me with that one, weren'tcha?
*CHOMP!*... I took it) I'm pretty sure we've got a list of swimmers, maybe not all from Texas but we might claim the ones who go to U.T.! That's fair, isn't it? I say yes.

susie b

Thanks, Larry. I went to the NBC Olympic Athlete section & started to read up. Why are there no Canadians in the Marathon? And btw, we missed you during the Tour!

Amy, those divers are cute! I was only able to see a snippet of the Diving Trials this year, but am looking forward to the Olympic coverage on TV. Every time I see any diving, I always hear the voice of the NBC commentator of the last several years, Cynthia Potter, in my head & I just checked & she'll be on the coverage again this year. If she wasn't, it would be like watching cycling without P2 - like something is missing! :)

And I only mentioned Nastia, Camille, as she will probably be one of the big stars in Beijing. The women's gymnastics All-Around Gold will probably be between Shawn, Nastia & one of the Chinese girls. And Nastia will also probably win at least one individual event Gold - she's exquisite on both Bars & Beam. One of my other fave gymnasts is American Alicia Sacramone. Very strong & great danceabilty on the Floor. She's also awesome on the Vault. But, you're right about the UT swim guys. The ones I know of are previous Olympians - backstroker Aaron Peirsol, flyer Ian Crocker & "breast man" Brendan Hansen, but there could be a couple others.

Too bad no one on here is from Florida as swimmer Ryan Lochte is from there. If there was no Michael Phelps, he'd be the best current male American swimmer. And he's a cutie. :) BTW, he & Michael are great friends & were on the cover of 'Men's Journal' mag (only in their speedos - be still my heart!) that somehow fell into my grocery cart a couple weeks ago. ;) Hated the article though, the jerk writer did not 'get' & did not like Michael & his bias was blatant. Of all the pieces I've read on Michael the last 6 years, it was by far, one of the laziest & told one NOTHING about what makes Michael tick,etc. My guess is that he waited too long to do the piece & couldn't get access - in fact, I don't think he spent ANY one-on-one time with the guy at all. Hell, I could write a better piece from freakin memory. But, I digress... ;)

Also from the Washington metro area but the VA side & not MD, is swimmer Kate Ziegler. She swims the Freestyle distance events.

But my fave female swimmer besides Katie Hoff is of course Dara Torres. I think she's fantastic although it seems she's not quite "feminine" enough for certain male blog hosts.... BTW, for all those who look askance at a 41 year old mother swimming in the Olympics, months ago she VOLUNTEERED for the USADA special anti-doping program & is tested randomly every 2-3 weeks.

And Oh, I was looking at the 2012 London Olympic site & it's Opening ceremonies are JULY 27th. Which means the TDF needs to start at the end of JUNE that year or those guys won't be able to compete. And even then, it will mean finishing in Paris & going straight over to London. At least it's close by!

And finally, did ya'll see that an "IOC official" has spouted off that the Olympic torch relay was a "disaster" this year? Yep, the one & only Dick. According to some polls I found, he's now pissing off more than the cycling community. I know! What a shock! ;) ;)


And since we're talkin' swimming, we got a guy named Hayden. You'll be hearing from him soon. As you will of Vancouverden - a kayaker.

What's interesting is our best athletes tend to hone there craft in the US - mostly at Big Ten NCAA schools - where many win championships. And your best hockey players come up here to play junior and AHL as a stepping stone to the NHL.

In order to enjoy these games, I gotta block out the politics and try to forget China as the host. If the IOC truly believed in their own lofty sentiments, such a repressive and regressive brutal regime would not have been awarded the games. Anyhoooo, I'm looking forward to the games.

Cheers, Larry

ps maybe this time Michael Barry will avenge his just missing a bronze to Axel Mercyx.


Cathy, I am praying for strength, hope, and good news for you and your family.

I'm just so bummed that the road race will be streamed on-line overnight, then what little bit will be broadcast during the day Saturday is at an unknown time--and I have to work.

Can't say that I will particularly try to watch any other sports--maybe gymnastics.


Susie, your Olympic fever is starting to catch on with me...I hadn't given all of it much thought quite yet but now I am getting into it and really looking forward to events beginning on Friday. This guy isn't American but he's my friend and such a neat guy--Greg Henderson (New Zealand) will be riding track, and his fiance is Katie Mactier is a track rider too (Australia, I think).

Rob's tests all came out good today and his doctor feels he's just having what's called a PSA "bump" that happens to some people after treatment. He's being monitored for a few months, but at this point is not worried that the cancer is back. So we won't worry either, whew! And thanks for all of your good wishes, thoughts and prayers.


Cathy, I'm a little late catching up on posts this week, but please know I am sending all positive energy and prayers your way!
Love, Barbara


God Cathy, that is GREAT news. Ya know, I think the great PSA is over rated. Many things can elevate it, (similar to the holy grail BNP used to monitor cardiac function) and it doesn't always mean anything. Did you hear on NPR today that the medical associations are now recommending docs not test PSA in men over 75? Too many false alarms and unnecessary biopsies. Not saying your sweetie shouldn't have done it, just saying docs have feet of clay and it's not always what it seems.


Cathy, that's wonderful news! I meant to say earlier that I had my fingers crossed for good news to come for him. My mother just had a CAT scan herself with a good report (cyst on her pancreas is benign) so I have a fresh reminder of how scary it is! Thanks for the update!


Great news Cathy (and Camille)!! Whew!

Susie your enthusiasm is absolutely contagious and I'm scrambling to try to read up on some of the athletes and events before they are upon us.

You're so right about looking past the politics, Larry. Definitely required to enjoy the competition and spirit of the Games this year (amidst the smog).

Really nice diary entry from Michael Barry:

susie b

Oh Cathy - HAPPY DAY! I am so, so happy & relieved for you & Rob. And happy for you too, Camille. And now we can ALL look forward to the Olympics! :) :) Where the only pall is the Beijing pollution & the Chinese govt & the sad reality that for someting THIS big to take place in this day & age, HUGE money is required & since it is not a charity nor a non-profit endeavor, that means big corporations will foot the bill mostly so they themselves can benefit.

And you're right, Larry - about China. I was incredulous several years ago when Beijing was "awarded" the Games, but as Sally Jenkins wrote in her Washington Post piece yesterday - it's ALLLLLL about money. If you really want to get irate or depressed about the Olympics, just read Sally's piece called "Partners in Grime". It's actually an excellent article & Sally is one of my favorite journalists (a few years ago she got into a now infamous pissing match with Dickie boy, so that right there elevated her to Goddess status in my book :), but I hope she doesn't keep bashing China the whole way thru the Games. For me, it's about like those Christmas cranks who EVERY gdamn year go on & on about how the season is nothing but commercialized bunk. Yeah, it's commercial, but it's joyful too. And in the case of the Olympics, I want to be ENTHRALLED & INSPIRED by the magnificience of these athletes as they do things I can only dream about. So, go ahead & bash the Chinsese govt for their censorship, totalitarianism, human rights violations, horrific pollution problems despite ridiculously printing/broadcasting every day that the air quality is "excellent", & for the undue pressure they have put on all their athletes not to just "do their best" but win a GOLD medal "or else". And don't forget to bash the IOC for being the bastion of idiots that they are, not to have seen that everything so far was freakin INEVITABLE from the moment they gave China the Olympics.

But, once the Games start, I hope we & Sally & the rest of worldwide media horde bunkered down in Beijing, will concentrate on the AMAZING things we'll be seeing every day & night. And gasp & scream in joy & awe. Because the fact is the Olympics are there & starting now. And the ATHLETES did not choose Beijing, they just want to compete in the sport they have devoted their life to. On the WORLDWIDE stage. And I'll be damned if I don't cheer them on, at least until the Chinese govt does something so heinous AT the Olympics which will be broadcast live around the world (always a possibility) & the Games will slam to a halt. And may Jacque Rogge then be sentenced to live out his cough-filled days in that very city.

And when positive doping tests come to light (and they WILL), be prepared to read/hear how the Olympics mean nothing anymore as "nothing is real". (As cycling fans, it will be like "old home week"....). And then we can all get back to the SERIOUS sport coverage & discussion of the FARCE that is Brett Favre & the Packers. Well, at least the Patriots are happy as no one's talking about Spygate anymore. Another sterling illustration of "America's Game". Yes, my heart swells & I burst with national pride when I think about the two main ESPN topics of the last several months. Who needs the Olympics when you have that?


I'm so happy for you and your hubby Cathy! And for Camille's mom. Did anyone see that Larry King bit on last night (tues) where Brian Williams, Katy Couric and Charles Gibson talking about the stand up 2 cancer segment their going to do in Sept.? Here is the link:

Those us of with decent eye site and who don't leave the room during commericals may have seen the promos with Lance in them.

I'm with you all re: "how the heck did they get selected for the Olympics" China. Been bugging me since the announcement and you don't know how many times I started a rant here about it and then deleted it for more kindly chatter. I'm guessing that it will be the athletes that come back with respiratory issues that will maybe wake up some folks that don't remember the 70's & 80's fight on air pollution restrictions!

ok - whoops - politics =D Reign me in!

And I'm watching Sell too.

I got seriously Mamma Mia'd last week. What FUN.

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