Wednesday, July 05, 2017

The Tour 2017, deux

So the sun came out, the landscapes of Lorraine and the Vosges are gorgeous, and the racing got hot and dramatic. But yesterday longtime sprinting nonpareil Mark Cavendish was eliminated by injury after going down hard a couple of seconds short of the finish line, ending his chance to restore his supremacy among the fast men. Then Peter Sagan, one of the most colourful riders and a Tour contender, was eliminated from the race by the judges -- because it was his elbow that put Cavendish into the barrier and down, to be run over in quick succession by several bike riders going 60 or 70 kph. Dramatic racing, but cringeworthy too.

Froome is methodically dull, Contador sullied by previous drug offences, Cav's out, Sagan's out, Quintana a predictable runner up  -- who's ya gonna root for and against?

Update:  Fabio Aru, the fast young Italian.  Yesterday was the first serious hill stage, and the Sky machine pretty much took over, delivering Froome the yellow jersey he seems destined to carry. Except with a couple of k to go young Aru rocketed away from the leader's group, and sailed up to a dramatic stage win.  He had just a little too much overall time to make up to steal away Froome's yellow as overall time leader -- but Froome could not stay with him on the final steeps.  Know hope.

Curious Tour name of the day: Perrig Quéméneur. Who knew there were babies being named Perrig these days?  Kinda like Zdenek Stybar, too.  Despite a few Yanks, Brits, and Aussies, you are in l'Europe profonde when you follow the Tour
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