Pro Cycling News – TDU Heats Up, UCI Negotiates, Jeanson Banned

Jan 20 2006

Sorry to miss posting yesterday, but the cell towers in this particular region of New Hampshire seem not to like carrying data calls. What’d I miss? Not much, it turns out, just Allan Davis taking his first TDU stage win after eight years of racing the dang thing. With the GC largely unchanged, some commentators instead noted Davis’ striking figure; I’ll admit it’s nice, but I’m still waiting for the boob job he promised at last year’s Enenco Tour. Today’s race saw another Liberty rider take a win, and set the stage for a nasty showdown between the newly-navy Spaniards, led by last years’ winner Luis Sanchez, and their ProTour associates at Ag2r, headed by current race leader Australian Simon Gerrans, in tomorrow’s decisive stage.

Speaking of the ProTour, it seems the UCI is calling for terms (scroll down – I’ll get to the French Canadian broad later). Now, I’m trying to stay clear of this dispute, because, as Tom Boonen’s pointed out, people are going to come see the big races, no matter who organizes them. But I’m hoping that at these “round table” talks, they’ll do something about uniforms. Maybe I’m beating a dead horse here, but do these guys really look appreciably different from these guys? I know, some teams are doing their part with scarcely-used uniform colors, and that some have even taken the quest for uniqueness a bit too far, but still, I think it might be time for the UCI to start assigning certain sections of the visual spectrum to individual teams when they get their ProTour licenses.

Finally, today, Genevieve Jeanson was handed down a lifetime ban from USADA for an EPO positive at the ’05 Tour de ‘Toona. The French Canadian, racing under US license after losing her Canadian one by being “unfit to race” before the ’03 World Championships, missed out on the regular two-year ban because she had previously skipped a dope control after the ’04 Fleche-Wallonne. Though she maintains her innocence, Jeanson has come back with the old “you can’t ban me, I’m retiring,” shtick. Her actual statement:

“I don’t want anything to do with cycling. I’m tired of…repeating that I have never taken EPO or any banned substance.”

Believe me, Genny, not nearly as tired as we are of hearing it. What really intrigues me about this case is that now both winners of the 1999 Mt. Washington Hill Climb have been banned from the sport (the other being Tyler Hamilton). I wonder if Audi will be repossessing those A4s they so prominantly gave away as prizes? For that matter, will the Mt. Washington race committee take Jeanson’s women’s record, set in 2002, off the books? My guess is no, which makes for just another reason not to do that hideous, hideous race.

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