The day started out with the unfortunate, but expected news that Barloworld was pulling their sponsorship of the team. So now, because one scumbag was a selfish drug cheat there will be about fifty families without any income. I wonder how well Moises Duenas can sleep at night with all that on his conscience.
The race today was great. The little hill at the finish unhinged Cavendish and Freire took the win. Besides being a three-time world champion, Oscar Freire is also a very classy bike racer. He and Zabel went at it and I have to say they are the only two who can go in a field sprint on a climb and win. They both have the experience to know when they can win and when they can’t. When Freire sees it, he does not lose.
The big question is whether Cavendish will stay in the race to Paris or pack it in and get ready for the Olympics, but I think he’s a tough monkey and he’ll stay in the race. Like I said before, bike racing is about two things; suffering and revenge. All the “Man from Man” has to do is stay within the time limits, use his rest day to full effect and then get to Paris where he can exact his revenge for losing today. In fact, if you have any Belgian bookies I’d make that bet with them now.
Once again the racers all reminded me of a Hun raiding party who’ve been living off the blood of their horses. They continue to show a never-ending hunger which is only matched by their endurance. All which makes each rider a formidable presence. Get all of them together and it’s simply beautiful to witness.
My Tour prognosis is that Cadel will blow to the moon and lose the jersey. I have bad feeling about his grasp on the jersey. Those other five guys will not sit by without attacking ferociously. I mean Sastre is 1:26 out – he’s never been that close and he’ll launch like a sociopath!
Bobke’s Inside Line: Tomorrow the Tour arrives in the Promised Land – Italy. Every kilometer we get close to the border the better life will be. As soon as the stage is over I plan to hit up every pizzeria, café, bike shop and boutique. I’ll fill my car with all kinds of Italian yummies and even if I blow all my Euros I’ll still be a rich man – it’s Italy!