Awright, kiddies, brace yourselves. You’re staring down the barrel of a cycling blunderbus today. No sissy “arc”, no “recurring themes”, just a hailstorm of unrealted news shards. First item: Frank Vandenbroucke, cycling’s version of Gollum, has found a home for 2006, on the Unibet.com team. It’s quite some distance from the Ring of Power (like, Mirkwood far), but VDB’s been known to suprise us in the past. Damien Nazon, brother of multiple TdF stage winner Jean-Patrice, has announced his retirement (scroll down) following Ag2r’s ascention to ProTour status. Not sure how the team’s having way more money and a bigger roster makes it harder to get signed, but maybe that’s just how things work in France. Meanwhile the ProTour’s Eindhoven TTT has aparently been declared a flop (scroll down). And much as I hate to say it, duh. In the Grand Tours, TTTs are an interesting distraction, and a great way to see how teams and managers shore up under pressure. As a seperate event, it does nothing except reveal the UCI’s obsession for categorizing everything, and show how even the best riders in the world can sandbag from time to time.
Stateside, all manner of debris is being kicked up by a new Colorado law that limits cycling events to 2500 people or less. VeloNews, located as it is in Boulder, has run not one, not two (scroll to bottom) but, three articles on the new rider limit. Hell, maybe if we could get some spring classics out in Colorado, we might see some decent coverage (just kiddin’ you guys – hugs and kisses all around). Seriously, though, the new law ranks up there with the old Texas sodomy statute in terms of enforcability. The idea, I guess, is to preserve limited police resources, but have you any idea how many “resources” it takes to round up a cadre of 7000 cyclists? Outside streets as congested and narrow as Manhattan’s, it’s darn near impossible. How would district attorneys even prove all 7,000 were part of the same ride? Some would argue that the law is about rider safety; probably the same morons who think that Fox News is journalism. Here’s a tip, boys and girls: anytime someone takes away your right to do something in the name of your safety, they are probably full of sh!t. And, since I don’t want to end on a political note, here’s Damiano Cunego, getting his new rig set up.