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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
I am really enjoying the live coverage of the Tour de France this year on Versus. I was an enthusiastic bicyclist as a young man and I always had dreams of the tour, but never actually saw it until now. Amazing.
 

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Grrrr. All this does is remind me of my own stupidity. We haven't subscribed to cable anywhere we've lived for the past 7 or 8 years, but I often get it installed for the TdF, then cancel it afterwards.

The last 2 years, the local cable provider at our latest home didn't carry OLN (now Versus), so I assumed they still didn't. I finally, "what the heck" checked it out about 2 weeks ago -- they now have Versus, and it's in the first package above basic.

My excitement quickly died down when I saw that the earliest available install date was 7/19, more than halfway through. If only I hadn't ASSumed!

Self-loathing rant aside, yes, it's an incredible event, and I felt the same way as you the first time I saw the coverage. Enjoy it for me! I'll be following along online, and if it turns out to be a good one, I'll buy the DVD from World Cycling Productions.
 

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as Rob said, Versus used to be OLN (Outdoor Life Network). They showed Le Tour for many, many years.

as a weekend warrior cyclist myself, i watch religiously. but now that Lance has retired, and the big drug scandal last year took out so many BIG name contenders (just by association, not by guilt), i don't know who to cheer for now. so many names i don't recognise . . .

it was great to see Cancellara do so well for the first week. he even beat the sprinters at the end of one of the stages - nice !! hope he finishes well at the end.

then young Linus put in a stunning performance the first day in the Alps !

still another week and a half to go . . . should be interesting !


ps -
Versus also covers the America's Cup. this year was great - closest ever competition, first ever penalty given in the finals, and 5 lead changes in the final race with the closest ever finish ! the drama seemed more like a hollywood movie than a real life sailboat race.
 

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Yup,

I'm pretty much glued to it every night.

Best Tour for a long time! Thank God the Lance years are over....

So who's it going to be? My money is on Valverde. I really want to see Moreau on the podium too....although that may be a longshot. As of today, Vino is done. Alas, Kash had to stay by his side, so there go his chances too. Mayo looks pretty good too.

Now if only there was a way to have Ligget and Sherwin commentate at night. While Roll is an affable dork, Trautwig is just dull. He is the epitome of jack of all trades; master of none.
 

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Yup,

I'm pretty much glued to it every night.

Best Tour for a long time! Thank God the Lance years are over....

So who's it going to be? My money is on Valverde. I really want to see Moreau on the podium too....although that may be a longshot. As of today, Vino is done. Alas, Kash had to stay by his side, so there go his chances too. Mayo looks pretty good too.

Now if only there was a way to have Ligget and Sherwin commentate at night. While Roll is an affable dork, Trautwig is just dull. He is the epitome of jack of all trades; master of none.
Not sure who to predict, but I may as well say something. I called Erwin Vervecken for CX worlds this year, but only in my head, so it doesn't count. So... I'm going to go with Cadel Evans. He seems to be going well and keeping to himself, and the Aussies are due, I think. I like Levi, his preparation seems on target, and his "Vino's the big favorite" mantra was very Lance-esque, but I'm just not sure he has the strength.

I'd also like to see Moreau up there. I always think the guys who make the race deserve to see some results, but most often it's one or the other.

I love watching/listening to Phil and Paul. Even though they have their own well-worn cliches ("He's in bit of a bother!"), they're familiar and comfortable to me after all these years. I've listened a bit to an English audio feed, and one guy is good, but the other is Sean Kelly, and while I'm honored to be listening to him, I can only understand about 40% of what he says.
 

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Wow. You just disrespected King Kelly :eek: The man is more of a legend than any of this year's tour competitors.

I'd like to see Leipheimer do well. Like you, I don't think he has the engine. I am very impressed with Horner this year though. A man to watch in the years ahead, I'd say.

It's going to be tough to displace the Chicken from the yellow jersey...
 

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Wow. You just disrespected King Kelly :eek: The man is more of a legend than any of this year's tour competitors.

I'd like to see Leipheimer do well. Like you, I don't think he has the engine. I am very impressed with Horner this year though. A man to watch in the years ahead, I'd say.

It's going to be tough to displace the Chicken from the yellow jersey...
I thought I was merely disrespecting the Irish. ;) Despite the reputation of Americans in general, I don't actually blame the speaker if I can't understand them.

Yeah, I think Horner could do some amazing stuff if he was ever given the leash and the support. And yes, they may have let Rasmussen take a bit too much time this year.
 

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That's probably what got me going actually. Being Irish, he was very much a boyhood hero. And I couldn't understand his accent either!

So, $5 says it's Valverde. You say Evans....
I'm Irish and Scottish myself, and I really like the sound of both accents, but I can't always understand what's being said. I watched a movie called "My Name is Joe," about a Scottish alcoholic (don't say it!), which was subtitled and really deserved it.

Uh oh, now it's for money! I say make it a $5 donation to the AlfaBB, and if we're both wrong, we both donate.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
Rasmussen sure looks strong now. He has a big team and has shown much improvement in the time trials. The tour has so much luck or fortune involved, however, that anything can happen.

I look forward to running an Alfa over some of those alpine roads one day.
 

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I'm not much of a bicycle buff, but once the TdF hits the Pyrenees, I can't resist to watch. This year seems exceptionally interesting as there are still half a dozen real contenders who could win the Tour (I refuse to write Vino off).
 

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Ouch, just heard in the news that Vino tested positive for a blood transfusion.
So I have to write him off now.
 

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there are still half a dozen real contenders who could win the Tour
I don't know, Rasmussen would have to explode pretty disastrously for anyone else to beat him. Not that it couldn't happen, but I haven't seen any signs of it yet.

Today's the only day the other climbers have left to give it a shot, and on Saturday we'll see if Rasmussen only had 1 good TT in him. The only other possibility is a random race-ending event, like a crash or positive doping test.
 

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Well Rob, I'm down $5 for sure. You might be too....Contador and The Chicken are the only 2 left with a chance.... Unless Evans gets some advice from Vino before the TT.

Incidentally, this thread does have a TdF/Ferrari connection now....who knows what it is?
 

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Well Rob, I'm down $5 for sure. You might be too....Contador and The Chicken are the only 2 left with a chance.... Unless Evans gets some advice from Vino before the TT.

Incidentally, this thread does have a TdF/Ferrari connection now....who knows what it is?
Yeah, I don't think there's much chance for Cadel. That's OK, the AlfaBB will win $5 from each of us. Of course, Rasmussen has his own well-publicized doping cloud, and I just read in the latest issue of VeloNews that Contador was one of the riders excluded last year, due to implication in Operacion Puerto.

At that time, I was a doubter, thinking "Who exactly cracked the code names identifying the riders, and why should we believe them?" Of course since then, many of those correlations have proven to be correct.

Hmmm, TdF/Ferrari connection? I don't know, beyond the obvious: that there was an automobile race called the Tour de France, which Ferrari participated in (and which became the name of one of its 250 GT models).
 

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Vino and Dr Michelle Ferrari.

Short comment here from Liggett:

2007 Tour de France

In the 2007 season, Vinokourov was aiming for the overall victory in the Tour de France. After riding in the traditional "warm-up" races, like the Dauphine Libere, the 2007 Tour de France started on july 3rd in London. Vinokourov fell in the first week, severely injuring both of his knees. Due to his injuries, Vinokourov lost time in the Alps and Pyrénées, and was eliminated as a top contender.

After being written off as a contender, Vinokourov put in an outstanding performance in the first individual time trial to win the stage by 1:14 from second place Cadel Evans of Australia. Vinkourov said of his win: "I am happy with my performance, I am finding my legs again. Now I want to attack in the Pyrénées. I want to thank everyone in and around the team that encouraged me to get through the Alps." [33] He also secured a gutsy win in stage 15, a mountain stage finishing in Loudenvielle.

On July 24 it was announed that Vinokourov failed the doping control following his individual time trial victory (his blood had a double population of erythrocytes, which implies that he received a homologous transfusion).[34] [1]

Following the announcement of the positive test, the whole Astana team withdrew from the race at the request of ASO president Patrice Clerc. Vinoukourov left the Tour disgraced.

If Vinokourov's B sample comes back positive, Australian Cadel Evans (Predictor-Lotto) will be declared the winner of stage 13. Vinokourov could also be stripped of his stage 15 victory. According to Phil Liggett, long-time commentator for the Tour, "It is incomprehensible that Vinokourov could do such a thing when he must have known he was under suspicion because of his dealing with disgraced doctor Michele Ferrari in Italy. He must have known he would be tested at every opportunity and the time trial was the perfect occasion."[35]
 
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