Velogal's Blog

Sunday, July 02, 2006

Jeeze - bizarre keeps on happening at this year’s Tour. Thor Hushovd got nailed by one of those damn PMU green hands right before the finish line. OLN showed him lying on the ground with tons of blood all over his arm - he was taken to the hospital. His start tomorrow is uncertain right now. How terrible that his triumph is taken away the very next day by a stupid accident that is not his fault in any way. Makes me think of Dave Z last year, with the maillot jaune snatched away by a mean turn of Fate.

I hate those damn hands and I’ve said so before in my Tour reports. The riders have said for years that they have bruises and scratches from them. They are always concerned about being hit in the face as they race beside the barriers. Photographers hate the green hands because they constantly get in the way of finish line shots.

I see that Alexander Vinikourov has announced that the Kazakh coalition will purchase and run the Astana Wurth Team next year. They will buy the Manolo Saiz-owned Active Bay management company. The 2007 Astana team will be Kazakh licensed. Vino said that Saiz will not be a part of the company and that Saiz should go back to running his little bike shop - that he must leave the world of Pro cycling for good.

Vino says he is distraught over not riding the Tour, and his regret is that he did not take stronger action earlier. He says he will be the DS for the new Kazakh team in two years, so it looks like he plans on retiring after next year. What a tragedy that he cannot compete this year. Vino is a good guy and this shouldn’t have happened to him.

Yesterday, Vino said, "I made a sporting choice coming to Liberty Seguros because I thought it was the best team to help me win the Tour de France. I am distraught with the turn of events. I trained like I have never before for this Tour. Yesterday (Friday) I had my wife on the phone and she couldn't understand how all the family sacrifices I had made would not be compensated for. I spent weeks away from my children to train and I imposed on myself truly draconian conditions in order to be in the best possible position to win the race. But today, here I am at home in Monaco while the prologue has started without me. It was without a doubt my last chance to win the Tour - and it's been stolen from me."

I know this is gonna open a can of worms, but I’ll say it anyway. Here we have David Millar, confessed (after first lying) and convicted doper, riding the Tour this year. And Virenque, confessed (after first lying) and convicted, who works with the Tour as a broadcaster and is prominent in all the Village Departs, signing autographs, and very welcome into the ASO company. So, we are gonna see both Millar and Virenque very prominently at the Tour. And then we have somebody like Vino, a potential Podium winner, and in no way implicated in the Spanish Inquisition, who gets the shaft because so many of his team mates are “under investigation” that he can’t get enough guys for a team. The whole thing is so screwed up and unfair.


  • ahhhh. no mention that Big George is in yellow? Gee, I am still floating on his win. Maybe we should concentrate on the race and not on the people who arent in it? I say Big ups for George and his 2 seconds.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, At 2:05 PM  

  • This is just Vino's karma catching up to him...

    The two admitted doping offenders did their time and should get cycling fan's support. I hope Millar success in this year's tour.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, At 3:13 PM  

  • It is amazing that Virenque could lie for years, finally admit it (what did they undeniable proof?), and then be forgiven by the fans and the racing establishment. But doesn't the same thing happen in other pro sports. Heroes generate fan interest and income.

    There will now be a maximum effort to prove Armstrong has been doping at any time, but the real prize would be doping post 1998.

    Could Lemond's accusations spring from his frustration that his chance to be the greatest American cyclist was snatched away by his own recklessness in blundering around in the woods with a bunch of people playing with loaded guns?

    By Anonymous Anonymous, At 6:53 PM  

  • Out with the green handa. They were always in my way when trying to get photos of the race. Sorry it had to happen this way, but I am glad they are gone.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, At 7:04 PM  

  • Does anybody know the nationality of the fan that cut him? I could swear the French hired him to do that so one of their own could get a win. Heck, the French authorities banned most of the challenging non-French riders. Coinincidence that no Frenchies were fingered? I think not.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, At 9:48 PM  

  • My heart goes out to Thor - accidents like that are tough to swallow, especially when you have cotton mouth at the end of such a great sprint...

    Kudos to George!

    By Blogger Jeremy, At 7:09 AM  

  • Vino is no innocent, how can you race, eat sleep & breathe the same air as your team mates, see the same doctors, Ds etc etc and not have at least an inkling that something was going on. His silence & lack of action make him guilty to some degree, did he believe Heras was the only Siguros member to dope?

    By Anonymous Anonymous, At 7:12 AM  

  • Vino was badly treated by the Tour organizers. They should have made an exception for him. I will be cheering for him to win in 2007, but I think it will be tough to come back in after a year off.

    By Anonymous Steven Forth, At 1:59 PM  

  • Guilt by association..interesting concept. Guilty until proven innocent. Now that a thought --Its what happening at this tour. It is said that people attribute their own motives and values to others. I personally believe in facts and innoccent until proven quilty. There is a doping problem in cycling but all cyclist don't dope..assuming they do by assocation is neither logical nor reasonable but does make for a great witch hunt. There is nothing wrong with Vino's karma , he is an honerable man, who has been caught up in a game that timing probably was very deliberate because the investigtion has been going on for some time and the arrest could likely have been made earlier to give people like Jan and Ivan who say they are innocent time for a defense and Vino who was not implicated at all time to possibibly do sometthing about the situation. But it was advantagious to the French to do it the way it was done..may not help them anyway.

    And the hands have to go.

    By Anonymous yomike, At 7:29 AM  

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