Skip to comments.It TdF time again! (Tour de France)
Posted on 06/29/2011 9:29:15 PM PDT by Baynative
The American Long Shot
Chris Horner (USA) RadioShack: 50-to-1
Why he can win: After winning the critical Sierra Road stage at the Tour of California, the always-effusive Horner declared to the world, Nobody can drop me except Contador. Certainly that was the case in the Golden State, as Horner put on a tour de force, easily dispatching the likes of Schleck and everyone of Team Garmin-Cervélo. On top of that, Horner is a solid time trialist (sixth on Californias tough Solvang circuit this year) and hes one of the sports most cerebral riders. Think coach on the field and youre on the right track. Hes said a podium finish is the goal, and its actually not a totally outrageous proposition.
What could trip him up: For starters Horner, 39, is not even the leader of his team. Instead, hes one among four potential captains in a group that also includes former Tour podium finisher and recent Tour of Switzerland winner Levi Leipheimer, former Tour podium finisher Andreas Kloden, and Slovenian climbing sensation Jani Brajkovic. All four will get a chance to show their stuff when the climbing begins. Have a bad day on the wrong day, and youll be fetching bottles the rest of the race.
(Excerpt) Read more at nbcsports.msnbc.com ...
Seeing Chris Horner on the podium would be just glorious. (I met him while riding at an Arizona event in 1996.) He is one of the genuine good guys in the sport - a rider and athlete we can all be proud of.
But, in reality I think it will take something special to get by the Schleck brothers this year.
It all starts on the first Saturday of July. Sure, there's been a lot of bad publicity about drugs and the Armstrong controversy will overshadow the first week of the event. But, with any luck Ivan Basso, Cadel Evans, Alberto Contador and a pile of new and talented riders will give us all what we want - and event to remember and be proud of.
The battle of the PED masking agents.
I haven’t heard. Is Contador in? What happened to all the failed test investigations? Plasticizers and stuff.
If there is a ping list, add me to it.
I have been trying to discover who might be running a pinglist this year... Please add me to it as well!
I am also pleased to report that in my run-up to TdF couch-potato season, wherein I ride my trusty ‘88 Bottecchia or ‘98 LeMond just a “little harder” than usual, I have dropped many a macho twentysomething wheelsucker with fancy spandex and a ten-thousand-dollar bike.
Contador’s performance in the Giro was impressive.
While I think Contador might take it I’m pulling for Andy Schleck - I think - kinda’ sorta’.
Really I’m pulling for any lead American Team and it’s front rider.
Sudden, spectacular moments make the Tour de France what it is.
Racing can change in an instant, whether from a rider's quick acceleration, an unseen obstacle in the road, or a cyclist's unscripted emotional finish-line reaction. Great Tour moments are etched in race lore, and they occur in an instant, year after year always when least expected.
Countless epic battles, horrific crashes, furious sprint finishes,
and curious split-second oddities have occurred in the race's century-plus history.
Thanks for the thread.
Will be interesting to see the Schleck Brothers vs Alberto.
Liked you working the jumping devil into the photos...
Great picks, Bay.
In that case, please add me to the ping list.
Yes he is. Apparently the officials are satisfied with his explanation of having eaten tainted meat. Seems the public opinion of his involvement is against him.
Hey there. I’m all excited! Go Andy!
Wait, wrong sport.
So, anyone just hellbent for leather to ‘run’ the Tour thread on FR this year, or shall I continue?
Thank you for the email—I have to say that I am not excited about the race at all this year. I haven’t even purchased the VeloNews special edition mag. :(
Hey. I’m not sure what you mean by “leather”, but go for it; you do a great job. Unless Bay wants it.
Are you Ready? (Lots of us’d be very grateful...)
I’ll dig up my templates, download the usual Stage graphics, and get ready for the Live Thread.
Prolly post it tmw sometime to get it started.
Also tune up the TdF Ping list w/ this post; I took over the list from nutmeg a few years ago, but Bay has his own. Maybe we’ll look into consolidating them?
Let not your heart be troubled. Like all great traditions, le Tour never fails to surprise us.
This could just turn out to be something that we will all be talking about next year.
Thanks for doing this! Despite all the drug scandals, the Tour is still a great event.
What a pic - just at the moment of attack! I wonder if he got away...
It is not possible to be any less interested in observing or following this year’s TDF or any future occurrence of this ‘event’.
After watching the spectacle of everyone and his brother, including former team-mates, dumping upon LA to portray him as a doper / PED consumer / ‘cheat’ and worse, I have lost any taste, pleasure or interest in the TDF.
Liars !!! Cannibals ! Ingrates ! Poseurs ! Backstabbing headline hounds ! Bastards ALL !
Please take me off any TDF ‘ping’ list( s ).
Are you ready for the prologue TT?
This year the tour is throwing in a little twist. This from the Director:
JEAN-FRANÇOIS PESCHEUXS ANALYSIS : A change of custom
It has been a kind of tradition since 1967 that the Tour starts with a prologue. But, as in 2008, we will start with a road stage. We wanted to shake up the teams plans a little bit and change the way they operate. Only 10 riders can realistically contend for victory in a prologue. But each one of the 198 riders could win this stage and pull on the yellow jersey. Three years ago, the race started in Brittany, and this time were starting in the Vendée. The route will follow the coast before turning inland towards Les Herbiers and the Mont des Alouettes. This is not an hors catégorie test, but even so its a finish for the strong men. The pure sprinters will struggle. It will suit someone like Thor Hushovd or a puncheur like Thomas Voeckler.
Well whattdya know a 198km curveball to start the game...
LET THE FUN BEGIN!
Watching now on Eurosport. (Am I looking at one of those new DuraAce wireless gruppos?) Vive le Tour, vive Ready, Bay, et Nutmeg!