Jun 20 2007
Man, everybody’s got a book these days. Floyd Landis wrote one that was apparently pretty bad (he stole the title, too), and Saul Raisin’s working on one about his comeback, despite not having really come back yet. Used to be only the weirdos and paraiahs of the cycling world wrote books, but with the help of a few co-authors, everyone’s getting in on the act. Maybe I should get a job as a cycling book writer. I guarantee lower rates than Sally Jenkins, and my services will come with the added benefit of making your book not utterly suck.
Personally, I’d love to write the life story of T-Mobile’s Serhiy Honchar. I would call it Low-Hanging Fruit. Honchar’s a veteran rider who’s already built a solid palmares, and hopefully a solid retirement portfolio. Last season’s TdF performance aside, the 36-year-old had only a few seasons left, and his rise to prominence during the dope-happy 90’s, affiliation with Eastern Bloc training programs, and ostensibly inefficient riding style had already made him the subject of rumors; the perfect high-profile target for T-Mobile to say “Look, we kicked someone out! We’re policing ourselves successfully!”
With the UCI now ripping off Hollywood in an attempt to give their existing anti-doping measures more teeth, I really want to trust that Bob Stapleton is putting in a bona fide effort to self-regulate. But since CSC, the other ProTour self-policer, has had a slew of doping cases surrounding it, I think my cynicism can be forgiven. Certainly, I’m more trusting than the French, German and Dutch representatives, who expressed distinct displeasure at the news that Alejandro Valverde would be allowed to compete at this year’s Tour de France.
Oh, yeah, and I guess there was some racing, too. A little-known Italian guy made a gutty breakaway for his first win at the Tour de Suisse, while local lad Fab Cancellara completed the three-day trifecta of winning a TT, podiuming in a group sprint, and finishing with the lead pack on a hill stage. Cance did crack the next day, but teammate Frank Schleck (Andy’s older, fatter brother, in case you forgot) came away with the win and the GC lead. Then today, Robbie McEwen won a group gallop, with Daniele Bennati scoring his third 2nd place five days.