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Tour de France, anyone?

Schwinn
July 10th, 2006, 12:52 PM
Just wondering if anyone else watches? Mrs. Schwinn can't stand it, but doesn't mind that I watch it (separate TVs helps). She came down on July 1, saw me watching TV and said, "See you in 3 weeks, honey!"

We were at my parent's on the weekend for my step-dad's birthday party, and a few people were wondering what I was watching. I was explaining to my step-dad about the strategy of different teams, the different jerseys, and how not every team is about winning the yellow. It really is more interesting than it looks when you get into it.

This year, however, I've had a hard time getting into it. Mrs. Schwinn says because Lance isn't in it, but it's more than that. Once again, drug scandel has hit. My favourite (after Lance, of course) rider, arguably the toughest man in the race, Tyler Hamilton, has been fighting a doping scandel for two years now. It appears that he is being punished more for lack of definitive proof that he didn't cheat, as opposed to proof he did. The year he broke his collar bone in the second stage, only to continue on for the next three weeks AND reach the podium, he won me over.

So my next choice, Jan Ulrich, Der Kaiser (the one who I always say I resemble in my bike gear, body type, if he ever went on a 3 month McDonald's bender) was also caught up in doping scandel, the day before the Tour. He, as well as six others, were dismissed by thier team mangers not for doping, but for rumours of doping.

So, now I'm left with trying to decide if I want to root for George Hincappie, the new leader of team Disco, or Lance's former team-mate on team Phonak, the mennonite on the racing bike, Floyd Landis.

So, if anyone is still reading this, do you follow? Any thoughts on the tour? Any questions about how it works?

Puppyluv
July 10th, 2006, 01:19 PM
I usually follow it, but haven't had the time to this year. I find it a little dissapointing that there is way less covergae becuase Lance isn't in it anymore. It seems that the States has lost interest because of it, so it isn't on tv as much. i was really upset to hear about Ulrich, he was always my fave (yes, even more than Lance)

Prin
July 10th, 2006, 11:38 PM
I hear about it but that's it.. I find it so boring to watch..:o

jesse's mommy
July 11th, 2006, 05:58 AM
I'm not in charge of the remote control. Apparently I'm a clicker and that's really annoying. :o

Schwinn
July 11th, 2006, 01:34 PM
I hear about it but that's it.. I find it so boring to watch..:o

Lot's of people find it boring, but then I know people who watch yacht racing, so???

Part of the reason people find it boring is because they don't understand the intricacies of the race. The mountain stages start tomorrow, and it will be an entirely different race. Up until now, it's been a sprinters race. Now, for about the next week, it'll be all about the climbers, and the competition for King of the Mountains jersey, the polka dot one.

To really enjoy it, you have to know about strategies, and the different competitions involved in the race. Even then, not everyone will find watching 3+ hours of cycling overly exciting, so they'll go to a site like this where they can watch just the highlites, and hear about the back stories and rumours which are a big part of watching the tour--

http://www.bicycling.com/tourdefrance (http://www.bicycling.com/tourdefrance/0,6805,s1-7-0-0-0,00.html?location=_*topnav*)

For people in the US, you can see some exciting video of the finish sprints.

And it's moments like this that fanatics watch 3+ hours for (this is one of the most amazing moments in the tour history)

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Gr89ku-K2WU&search=lance%20armstrong