Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Let "Le Soap Opera" Begin: The Tour de France and the Team Astana Rivalry

If you have been watching the Tour de France this year, you know that the story surrounding the race is as good as the race itself. Lance Armstrong has recently jumped ahead of "team leader" Alberto Contador and now sits less than a second from the yellow jersey. When asked about his situation he said (approximately), "I don't want to get into the controversy about who is the team leader, but... I've won the Tour seven times, I think I deserve some respect." When asked why Contador was not in the front of the peloton when it split (a split that enabled Armstrong to overtake his "team leader") he responded, "Team Columbia was obviously going to try to break the peloton up. It didn't take a genius to figure out that when they went into that turn, they would try and create a split." In other words, Contador is no cycling genius.

I sometimes wonder if one reason doping scandals have not driven more fans away is because they represent just one more iteration of the entertaining dramas that have taken place in the margins of the Tour every year since its inception in 1903? The race is fun; but the speculation, the backstabbing rivalries, the metphoric nails on the road make the Tour one of the most compelling shows in sport.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Just one more iteration of the entertaining drama

World Tour