Drama Builds as ENECO Concludes

Aug 30 2007

Oh, what miserable timing for a computer upgrade! While while I was watching The Man cart off my Clinton-era CraptiPlex, all sorts of exciting news was breaking. The silver lining is that now IT can’t figure out how to install FrameMaker on my new machine, so today, I’m all yours. First up: no Valverde at the World Championships. Considering the raw volume of World Title bling the Spaniard has amassed over the past four years, the event is (IMHO) hardly worth mentioning without him. Not surprisingly, the Iberians are peeved.

At the same time, the Germans (stereotypical antipode to those hot-blooded Mediterraneans) are also peeved, but in a beautifully ironic juxtaposition, it’s over the non-exclusion of Erik Zabel, the only currently active rider (other than that vagabond Freire) to rival Valverde’s collection of World Champs brass. For additional Sophoclean effect, star-crossed would-be hero Andreas Kloden is hit by a car, the pugnacious Spartans retire mysteriously to the hills, and 12 city-states of the Delian League agree to a secret pact.

So was that good stuff, or what? I mean, you can see why it overshadows the racing: other than the 1:21 of dead air between Thomas Dekker and the winning time, there really wasn’t much to say about the ENECO/Benelux/Who Cares? finale. I guess I might have striven to re-translate Gutierrez’s victory quotes to make him seem less lame. Anyone who’s taken a Vuelta TT stage has no business talking about an ENECO or Tour Med win as the high point of his career.

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