Pro Cycling News – Boonen Loses at Qatar, Valverde Quicker, Bode Cheats?

Feb 2 2006

Yup. I screwed up again yesterday. Seems the Etoile de Besseges is a stage race, so Frederick Willems didn’t win it so much as he won the first stage of it. Ah well. At least I’m not the only one messing up (read the last paragraph and results). I have once again awoken too early to bring you results, but I do have this delightful story on Bode Miller and a less-than-legal cure he sought out some years back. Just roll up to a little shack and don’t ask questions, right, Bode? While we’re on the doping topic, here’s a story about Super-EPO and how it doesn’t exist, and while we’re on the topic of stuff that doesn’t exist, here’s yet another collateral risk of the Tour de Langkawi (along with naked squats). No wonder Jose Rujano chose not to go, though I’m told there may have been other reasons.

Ok, results are finally starting to trickle in, and it seems that FdJ’s Bernard Eisel, of all people, has ended Tom Boonen’s Tour of Qatar dominance by taking the sprint for Stage 4. Looks like Boonen was actually 3rd, behind Eisel and Milram’s Erik Zabel. And I really don’t have the patience to wait for Besseges results, so I’ll move along to rider news, where the ’03 World Bad Luck Champ, Igor Astarloa, will not be able to start his season as planned at the GP Costa degli Etruschi (where Petacchi will make make his debut (scroll down)) due to a thumb injury. Meanwhile, Alejandro Valverde has finally taken my advice and has increased the rapidity of his cadence. Jan Ullrich, on the other hand, continues to mash, but does so now in much warmer climates, where he’ll no doubt have less incentive to keep on his warm, winter kilos.

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