Sunday, 12 April 2009

Tom Boonen rather good on cobbles.

I can only assume that Filippo Pozzato is off to train as a Proctologist, I mean after all he's spent the last week looking up Boonens ass. At Flanders he finished sitting behind Boonen on every meter of the way, even finishing up following him home after the race, today he did a pretty good job as well, only once going to the front, where upon a look of confusion and fear came over his face as the horror of what had just happened dawned on him and he quickly hit the breaks and assumed his rightful place, making sure Tommy Boy didn't fart too loudly.

Of course all the best laid plans go to pot eventually and when Boonen was the only rider of the front group to remain up right he became not only favorite to take a 3rd P-R, but also had to face the possibility of wiping his own backside that evening. Still joing an elite group that includes Eddy is small price to pay for having to reach for the toilet paper yourself.

Lotto? What the hell's going on there then? Er, not a lot by the looks of it. Vague and half heated appearances at the front of races, rare podium places and a brief attempts to break away, all of it adds up to not a lot. Even Lambo'credit and the tent pitchers have had better seasons. Still, no doubt they are saving their forces for the upcoming grand tours, no I can't quite believe it either. Still it makes the Ardens week look more interesting now, Cadel must be getting even more pressure from the bosses to be on a ride for L-B-L, it's certainly a race that he could win, indeed I'd love to see him on the top of the podium, but I doubt that he's got it down as a target for 09. I suspect he'll ride it in an attempt to gague and hone his form and close his ears to pleas from his employers to 'go for it'.

Bloody Passports.

Uncle Pat has an opinion! I know, bit of a shocker that one, but it had to happen at some point. Uncle Pat has spoken, and his pronouncement is that the French labs that borrowed some of Lances blood earlier in the week are a bit sloppy. Now Pat may well have a point, some labs do indeed seen too eager to leak stories to the press. But shouldn't the head of the UCI be trying to force some sort of standardisation of process and procedure?

Still, nice to hear Uncle Pat talking about doping and testing procedures, he does a lot of that does Uncle Pat, how many times has he said that the blood passport driven sanctions are just days away? Well about five at the last count, first in January I seem to remember and then about once every three weeks since then. Of course any French labs that are busy chasing (sorry annoying) Lance are just going to look at Uncle Pats latest outburst and laugh at him. Why should they bother acting in a decent and transparent manner if the head of the UCI can't deliver on what he continues to promise?

The Sky's the limit.

Who are you riding for next year? Got a team sorted out? Nice new jersey tempting you to jump ship? Well Big 'Dave' Brailsford is busy flitting too and fro across Europe cheque book in hand signing up just about anyone who can ride a bike. Well at least that's the way it's being told in some parts.
Now if anyone thinks that Big Dave work up the morning after the Sky deal was announced and thought 'Huummn, better get some riders signed up' they are sadly mistaken. I would put money on the fact that somewhere in the dark Manchester bunker there is a list of riders that Big Dave wants for his team and I fully expect that such a list was first drawn up years ago when Big Dave and Shane Sutton sat down and one night said 'Lets have a Pro Tour team'. Of course since then names will have be crossed out and added goes without saying, but the idea that the structure wasn't planned to the last detail back in 08 is a little far of the mark.
Actually I'd guess it's not just riders, there will be support staff, DS's, doctors, accountants and all sorts on the list, there will be lists of food supliment providers, jersey manufactures and I'd guess even a selection of options for provider of team toilet paper.
You see dear reader Big Dave will have left nothing to chance, not the sudden realistaion that they need a mechanic or a soigner as they line up Downunder in 2010. There will be a plan, an order, a schedule and it will be followed to the letter, oh sure there will be minor deviations, but the script is pretty much ridden and rehursed all that will be happening this year is a little change to the height of the microphones.


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