“Hey Zappy, I’m coming to you live as we warp across France in the pouring rain trying to get to the finish of the next stage….warpinating for the people my shizzle! This was the third day in a row that dinner consisted of some baguette sandwiches in the back seat of car, but it’s all okay because it firms you up. These are like the salad days of the Tour, you got a work up and work hard for your first good meal. That’s the reason the French can’t win their own bike race, they’re used eating all that French food and that just makes soft!
How about Griepel winning again today? That was a beautiful thing coming from the big man and completely the opposite of the ugly carnage of Tyler Farrar’s crash. Too bad for Tyler that he made things worse by wrongly thinking it was Tom Veelers' fault and after the race he stormed over to the Argos bus to make his anger known. That’s when Tyler made his next mistake, you shouldn’t ever try to take on a guy with your bike shoes on! He had no traction and then the Argos guys just grabbed him so that was the end of that, but if looked at the tape he’d know he was knocking on the wrong door anyway.
How about Peter Sagan? Yes, Sagan again. Everyboy knows that he has incredible bike handling skills, but when he got collected by Tyler’s bike in the fall, he just rode across Tyler’s fallen Cervelo at 40 mph like it was a carbon fiber surfboard! And then he wound up just sitting on the curb with all the casualness of being a spectator smoking a cigarette and drinking a beer as he watched the bike race go by – simply amazing!
Once again the finish sprint provided the perfect storm for something like that to happen for a number of reasons.
1. I don’t think the French Department of Transportation has done the Tour any favors with all the traffic furniture they’ve been laying out. Two years most of the riders couldn’t bunny hop to save their lives, now they’re all out there looking like John Tomac or Hans Rey. These days you can’t finish a stage without knowing how to bunny hop.
2. The turnover in the Tour lately has been running pretty deep. There are a lot of young new riders in there, plus, last year the Tour invited two more teams to the race so in essence you have like 20 more guys in a race with less room on the road for them to be there…it’s like the Cuban boat crisis!
3. I think the pitfalls of so much carbon aren’t helping much. First of all, the braking surfaces on the wheels remain unpredictable, that equation has not been solved and although it’s just my opinion and not the least bit scientific, I think the carbon frames are so stiff that they are storing too much energy and when they release it just throws the rider down…they’re too reactive.
When you add all that up, it turns into a daily crash fest that won’t go away and the teams need to start strategizing for it. It definitely throws into question about where the safest place for a GC guy is at the finish.