Thursday, July 26, 2007

Tour de Farce

Oh, I'm so pissed off today. As some of my fellow travelling Deweys know, I've been glued to the Tour de France for the past two weeks and within 48 hours, my two favourite riders have been kicked out - Alexander Vinokourov for blood doping (Christ, the guy was riding with stitches in his knees and elbows after a bad crash- he was ALREADY a hero for just continuing the race - why did he have to be so incredibly stupid?) and now the leader, Michael Rasmussen, an amazing climber who I have admired for the last few years, has been pulled because he lied about his whereabouts and didn't show up for a drug test - which casts suspicion of course that he has been doping too. Fortunately the top three riders left have never been suspected of doing drugs so we might still have a race worth watching, but this is what I absolutely detest about professional sports. And it's not about stress and pressure - it's about too much money and too much ego and too much corruption. And I feel so bad for the riders who are clean and have to withdraw when their team does, because of some stupid teammate. Poor Bradley Wiggins. I'm now rooting for the man in dead last - Wim Vansevenant - just to make it to Paris.

I feel I've wasted almost three weeks of prime reading time (although I've gotten a lot of knitting done). I should have re-read Tim Moore's very funny French Revolutions instead - an amusing travelogue of a non-cyclist trying to ride the route (although come to think of it, he takes drugs too). Or I should have read a biography of Eddie Merckx. And I'll be looking forward to Jeremy Whittle's new book in September, Bad Blood: The Secret Life of the Tour de France, which hopefully will help me understand this whole mess.

1 comment:

Peter said...

I wonder if it is really possible to separate money, ego and corruption from stress and pressure. If you want a new rider to root for, perhaps you could join Crime Down Under, an Australian crime fiction blog whose keeper has been chronicling the progress of Cadel Evans.

Incidentially, I saw that A Dance to the Music of Time was among your favorite books. I've read just the first volume, but I am a big fan of Bill James who, under his real name, wrote a study of A Dance ...
Detectives Beyond Borders
"Because Murder Is More Fun Away From Home"