Archive | April 2013

La Fleche Wallonne

More Belgian countryside, and nice to see Andy Schleck smiling. Sorry not to be seeing Frank racing yet, out on suspension for an unintentional drug ingestion. So how does that work? Note to riders, don’t take water bottles from anyone but your team crew. Anyway, noticing, over a nice Leffe Blonde – definitely the beer to start with– that most Ardennes villages have new construction, meaning post WWII 1945, with now and again a skeleton of a medieval church or abbey. 

Moving on to dessert beers (who knew?) we love the framboise but certainly Krek cherry beer is the famous one. If the races continue to be boring we may have to start talking about the exotic Belgian beer making techniques unmatched anywhere else in the world. 

Uphill finnish up the Huy, rooting for Phillip Gilbert but….oh well…who? Doesn’t matter, at least they beat Peter Sagan. 

Now here’s the real point of this coverage….women ride bikes? Who knew? Congratulations to Marianne Vos who apparently wins this one all the time, but even now we only get to see her cross the finish line…it’s a complete aside…perhaps we could at least have a small version of the race? The truth is, men don’t care about women racing bikes, and who runs the sports networks? yeah… hey, cycle-girls, you should BOYcott…girlcott?  whatever….

 

Beer it is!

(Spoiler alert)…

Liege Baston Liege….up and down and around in the Ardenne looking like winter has only just left the region. All the more reason to start and finish the day with a nice dark beer. We started out with Belgian beers, of course, since Phillip Gilbert was slated to take it…instead he just got to wave to his parent’s house and Dan Martin crossed the finish line (why must you dilly dally at the very end?) to, I’m sure, endless bottoms up toasts back in Ireland. Guinness it is!

Steve Schlanger and Paul Sherwin navigated the race for us. Ahem Steve, we didn’t need to know that Dan Martin couldn’t win the next race we get to watch because he fell. That would be La Fleche Wallone, which was aired over the last weekend, BUT WE DON’T GET TO SEE IT UNTIL THURSDAY. SUCKY, GUYS AT NBCSPORTS. Come on, just because you have never watched a bike race doesn’t mean you can’t figure out that one wants to watch them IN ORDER! Sheesh.

Anyway, Slainté, Dan Martin.

 

They’re Back….Hooray for Phil and Paul!

Sigh…I mean seriously…sigh….Phil and Paul are back! Hooray! The excitement increased exponetially as a result (sorry Steve and Todd…maybe it’s the venues…) but we’re back in France and we’ve got the best commentators going, hands down, no one can beat the reportage of Phil Liggett and Paul Sherwin on NBCSorts, welcome back guys!

I’d make more comments about the Tour of the Basque country but truthfully I’m going to have to force myself to finish watching it. What’s with the motorcycle/helo background noise? It’s like listening to a baseball game being called in a dentist’s office. Switch to NBCSports and notice the absense of annoying vehicle sound? ahhhhh. thank you French TV god.

Speaking of suitcases of courage (valises de courage?), Fabian Cancellara is looking great at least mid race – kb Fabian, kb.

Wine pairing advice for the race – obviously a sauvignon blanc, give youself a sense of the dry, dusty, cold riding conditions…maybe a Sancerre, no, I think stick with sauvignon blanc.

Tut Tut Peter Butt

sagan2OK, Peter Sagan, that is just about enough out of you. Not only do you disrespect the women around you but you disrespect the guy who won the race and deserved his moment on the podium. Shame on you Sagan. We knew you were a joker and a jerk last year, stuff a sock in it. Women, it’s time we show the guys we’re sick of this.

 

Tour of Basque Country

Tour of the Basque Country

Episode 1

 

Should you be wondering what I do during the long sessions of seemingly endless peloton rounds around the countryside, I’ll confess that it is entertaining trying to decide what the hell is the deal with AG2R’s bike shorts. Are they like Lululemon’s yoga pants? Crystal clear? Who knows, it sure looks like we get moon cracks, is there a seam in those pants? WTF? Even Phil Liggett once commented that AG2Rs choice of team uniform was a rather strange presentation. Ah well, we’re still awfully interested in the results….afterall, what else is there to do?

 

            For one thing we might watch Alberto Contador, but, clear lense yellow glasses aside, aren’t we all over AC? Still waiting for him to prove he can do it without drugs.

Meanwhile, Team Sky seems to offer a leader no matter what race they are in, and it’s never the same guy so there’s going to be one hell of an arm wrestling match come the Tour and I think Cavendish made the right move to leave (accept the push? freefall? oust?)…

 

I forget, where’s Levi?