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July 20, 2006


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I've been watching the TdF for some 24 years (since I was 10 years old, in fact), and that was definitely one of the top 3 stages ever. Just a massive effort. I have a feeling it will be talked about for many years to come. I was listening on Eurosport yesterday (now *that* is a solid set of commentators; try turning off the TV sound and listening to those folks sometime) and Sean Kelly said something to the effect that it was the greatest stage he'd ever seen--and he's seen a few!

Paul Passavant


Now that all the commentary is calling this "one" of the greatest moments in Tour history, others saying "greatest I've seen," and Bob Roll called it the *greatest ever*, I do wish I was more of a Tour historian. Like, I seem to remember some story about some guy in a mountain stage whose front fork broke. He was carrying the bike on his shoulder through the mountains when he came upon a blacksmith. He asked the blacksmith whether he could borrow his tools, fixed his front fork, got back on the bike, and arrived before the cut-off time. Ok, not one of the great rides by a yellow-jersey contender, but certainly a story that gives the Tour its charm. And I used to get goose-bumps when the teams had melted away and it became the "heads of state" going at each other directly. But while the heads of state are not in this Tour, this Tour just got perhaps the greatest moment in its history.

While I think Al Trautwig (sp?) is just awful and a boor, I think Phil and Paul are completely wonderful doing the commentary. I have not, however, heard the folks at Eurosport (thanks for the info), but Phil and Paul both have a special place in my heart. They are know so much and so clearly love the sport! And I love their little catch phrases like taking out one's 'suitcase of courage'.


Sorry to go off-topic, I know that this has nothing whatsoever to do with Floyd Landis and his incredible feat, but I am doing a crossward puzzle at the moment, the clue is, "Linked to superhuman feats of sporting prowess, for which no other explanation is even remotely feasible, not even close. In recent years has been widely connected with the sport of cycling, and the event of the Tour de France especially."

Four letters, I have the third one, which is P, incidentally, which I got from "PHARMACEUTICAL" and the fourth one, which is E, which I got from "INTAKE."

Anybody have any ideas?


I think the answer might be
"dope" because of the current doping scandal, otherwise known as the Spanish Inquisition.

Jeff Wild

Question -- why do the Americans always have to have some "story" about them? It all is very curious:

1) Lamond -- has hunting accident and goes to on to win his third stage
2) Lance -- what else do I have to say
3) Landis -- having hip replaced after the Tour

Americans and fighting through illness AND the letter "L".

I guess they can't do things the simple way.


maybe because such 'stories" A) allow for all kinds of high tech pharmaceuticals to be used legally for a time and B) make it harder to think about questioning the rider in question's drug ethics. Great question. I'd been wondering about it myself and had forgotten about Lamond's hunting accident. Thinking about it too long makes one wonder about the legitimacy of such "stories."

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