Sunday, August 24, 2014

Goodbye Tour of Colorado, and HELLO La Vuelta!

For the first time EVER I will be watching the Vuelta! I'm rather jazzed, as it has probably the best class of GC riders of any Grand Tour that I can recall. Well, other than this years Tour, which turned out rather badly for that GC shootout the world was waiting for. But because of that, they are all at the Vuelta, and hopefully in good form.

But before I go into La Vuelta, we MUST cover the end of Colorado! First thing....what the HELL NBC Sports??? I recorded the stage (and actually the entire race) and have been quite busy all day doing chores and such (Jeannie comes home tomorrow from her vacation back east) I finally sit down to watch it tonight with a beer and some tasty ravioli's....and YES! Jensie is out on his LAST BREAKAWAY EVER! I'm loving it...eeking out ever millisecond of Jens attacking that I can.



There he is....Jens is descending Lookout Mountain after cresting it FIRST, headed for Golden, and NBCSports FREAKING SHIFT THE FREAKING CHANNEL IN THE FREAKING MIDDLE OF THE FREAKING RACE TO THE FREAKING REGULAR NBC FREAKING CHANNEL!  (do I sound upset?) THAT FREAKING SUCKS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! How on earth was my DVR supposed to know THAT? I obviously didn't know that was coming...and I've been watching the race EVERY FREAKING DAY! So quickly I scan the NBCSports channel (at 7:30pm'ish) and NO, there are no more broadcasts of the final stage! YOU'VE FREAKING GOT TO BE FREAKING KIDDING ME! I'M FREAKING MISSING THE FREAKING LAST FREAKING STAGE WITH JENS FREAKING EVER!!!! (yep, still a eensy teensy bit upset here).

And then...Universal Sports Network comes to the rescue! Lo and behold, on the channel I just subscribed to on FREAKING FRIDAY is re-broadcasting the NBCSports broadcast of the final stage (it even has the little NBC peacock in the lower right corner!) Phil and Paul are even doing the call (was Christian there today? I don't recall hearing him). However, when I switch to the USN channel they are now already inside Denver on the 2nd to last circuit (and it's not in HD either...but I guess beggars can't be choosey). Jens is still in the breakaway, but now only with one other guy. I'll take it.....cuz it's far better than the big ol' steaming mug of CRAP that NBCSports gave me!

So....I got to see Jens hang in just past the bell for the final lap...of course he was going to get caught, but Jens doesn't care....he gave it his best shot. The cycling world will be a much sadder place with Jens sitting home with his family...but I can't begrudge him that...way to go Jens! You will be missed more than you can imagine! Only Fabian and Horner of my fav three are still racing (and Horner got yanked from possibly HIS last race ever! Yada yada yada...I hear the 'reason'...another big steaming bowl of crap that one. The UCI gave him clearance...he had a TUE for the cortisone...he OBVIOUSLY had something wrong, and everything was on the up and up. And now he doesn't even get a chance to defend his Vuelta title, even though he did nothing wrong. THAT REALLY SUCKS! Sorry Chris...enjoy your vacation with your wife I guess (she had flown to Spain for the race)...and I hope and pray you get a ride next year.

As to the final GC standing...I SO wish TommyD had been able to pull something magical out of the hat.....for a brief minute or 2 yesterday during the TT I thought maybe he did...when he came thru with the FASTEST time at the half way point I was yelling at the TV, and then came across the line in FIRST, I was STOKED (saying things like "take THAT TJ!"). I truly had a moment there where I thought MAYBE, just MAYBE he will be just about even with TJ going into todays final stage....wouldn't THAT have been something. But wasn't to be. TJ beat his old record, and took another 40 seconds or so off of Tommy....can't fault Tommy for that...he rode the TT of his LIFE! And I will give TJ a tiny bit of credit...he seems to have lost some of the "uhms" from his speech...however, he's replaced the "uhms" with "I mean"...he said that about ten times in the interview back on Saturday. ARGH....why does he bother me so much? I JUST CAN'T LIKE HIM! Today after the race was over I even fast-forwarded thru his interview...just can't bare to even hear him talk right now. I guess I've got the newly diagnosed TJ-WIN-N-SPEAK-A-PHOBIA.

And so....on to La Vuelta. The TTT was pretty interesting...what a surprise from Movistar! However I will call their move to suddenly bring Valverde (after NOT bringing Quintana to the Tour so Valverde would be the sole-team-captain there...and Quintana was promised the Vuelta) a BIG STEAMING MUG OF CRAP for Quintana. I hope Valverde gets his...and the young'un rips his LEGS OFF in the mountains! Do they seriously think Valverde will be in the top FIVE even? PLEASE! NOT GONNA HAPPEN (unless Froome, Contador, Rodriguez, Talansky, Basso, and Quintana ALL crash out). the heat of the moment I threw Basso in there with those actual contenders.....HE has about as much a shot of winning as Valverde (IMHO).

I've got Stage two of La Vuelta on the telly now as I's a flat stage, so ho-hum...BORING. (if only Jens were there!)

Stepping back to Colorado for a moment (my mind wanders when I'm watching a flat stage) I was a bit upset that they didn't do ONE MORE SPEECH from and one more cool presentation for Jens...they did give him the most Combative Rider award again (obviously)....I just can't believe we won't be seeing him any more. Thee UCI needed to have some "most combative LIFETIME rider" award for the guy who's been out front the most (I find it hard to believe there's anybody who has more miles out in front of the peleton). I wonder if there's any way to add up all the breakaway miles he did...I bet it would be impressive.

In typical wandering brain syndrome...I do recall from the TTT this morning that the announcers said an Italian rider (can't remember who) is racing his 30th GRAND TOUR in this Vuelta! I wonder if THAT is some kind of many did Jensie race overall? THIRTY is a LOT of Grand Tours...that's a lot of pain! (Paul Sherwin today in the final Colorado Stage said watching Jens race towards Denver out in front made him think of Stings song "the King of Pain"...and said that's what Jens true. The King of Pain. If Rebecca Rusch can be the Queen of Pain, Jens is certainly qualified to be the KING of Pain! In fact, THAT would have been a cool award...a nice crown, a cape, a chair, some kind of thing to hold, and they could have anointed him as THE King of Pain. It's certainly how I'll always remember him.

OK...I need to get back and fly thru Stage 2, then get to's been a BUSY day! (I'm not saying the house was a wreck or anything since Jeannie's been gone for 2 weeks now...but I did have some 'catching up to do'....AND we have a house-guest coming in tomorrow night for the week also...thus I did NOT go mt biking today like I had planned....(did a 74 mile road ride on Saturday...and was really thinking about going out today also being the last day of Jeannie's vacation...but that would be rather selfish....babies need baths, sheets, bedspreads, towels, darks and whites all needed washing, entire house needed vacuuming, spare bedroom sheets needed washing and bed made, clean up spare bathroom suitable for houseguest, clean the REST OF THE HOUSE suitable for houseguest, run some errands (costco, home depot, albertsons), take the babies to the park (syd in her wagon)....water the plants, and I'm sure I'm fogretting that I read what I've been doing all day I'm beat).

Oh...and Susie...I was rather disappointed w/ the Hincapie interview. Mostly I think cuz it was Hummer doing the interview. And sadly (IMO) he's about as good an interviewer as he was a cycling commentator. And I hear the book is much the same (he wrote it for Geroge). I think they touched on some good stuff...but all in all it could have been SO MUCH MORE. If I can figure out a way to get it from my DVR to my PC I can burn a copy to DVD (supposedly it's possible....I'll look into it).

Good night's coming up on 9pm (I turn into a pumpkin or something around 10pm on work nights....get up at 4:15).

Enjoy the race!


  1. ARGH!!! Just finished watching Stage 2....and VALVERDE is in FREAKING RED! I can't FREAKING BELIEVE IT! Well...he'd best enjoy it...cuz Quintana will destroy him in the mountains.

  2. Hey Matt! I've been trying to get here to comment since Monday but work has not cooperated! Will finally have some time tomorrow ("ToMORrow, tomorrow, I love ya, tomorrow, it's ONLY a day awaaay! " So I hear).

    Just quick -would LOVE if you write up what you get from each day at the Vuelta (AKA, the HOT ZONE). Since I can't see any of it & the write-ups on cyclingnews & velonews have so far been BORING as hell, your take would be MUCH appreciated!

    As for Tejay - it's fine you don't like him, heck, I can't stand Sagan's voice, so I've never been a fan of his. I do think Tejay's matured a great deal the past 2 years OR at least has been coached about what to say in interviews (not counting the 'uhms'). I do wonder if he's just as arrogant as before but knows better now to conceal it. I doubt he'll ever be a 'superbig' favorite of mine like Jensie & Spartacus, but I NEED to have an American to root for at the Tour! We are still such a MINORITY there that you latch onto whomever you can. As you know, I root for nonAmericans too, but what can I say, I like to root for the good ole USA too. Also, you have to admit that Tejay WAS impressive in Colorado & especially that TT! Weedoggie! Pretty much everybody else who'd been at the Tour were non-factors in this race (not counting old Jensie).

    Anyhoo, will come back tomorrow to chat some more. ("ToMORrow, ...." , you know how the song goes. :) )

  3. "When I'm stuck with a day
    That's gray,
    And lonely,
    I just stick out my chin
    And Grin,
    And Say,

    The sun'll come out
    So ya gotta hang on
    'Til tomorrow
    Come what may
    Tomorrow! Tomorrow!
    I love ya Tomorrow!
    You're only
    A day
    A way!"

    What can I say - 'IT'S THE HARD LUCK LIFE!" I'll try again...TOMORROW! :) :)

  4. Hey Susie...I WISH I could sit and watch the entire stage(s) and then make a work has been killing me of late...working 12 hr days I only get time to zoom thru the stage on FF and watch the last few K (pretty much all week) was a great ending yesterday on the first summit finish tho...very exciting! Valverde was setting the tempo for Quintana at the very front...and then after an attack Valverde followed...and Quintana DIDN'T! Don't know if that was on purpose or not...maybe he's keeping his strength a secret for later in the race for the REAL Mt top finishes. Gotta run...have a great day! (And it's a 3 day weekend...woo-HOO!)