TDF Stage 8–Déjà Vu

6 Jul

Well my fellow Tour fans, we have another Tour outcome decided on the first day of real racing among the GC. Makes me long for another sprint stage.

The first of 3 weeks of the 100th Tour de France is behind us and the race for yellow is effectively over. I closed my post yesterday with the desperate plea, “please don’t let Sky get yellow”. So much for that hope.

People way smarter than me, through calculations, formulas – math and science – are highly suspicious of what Froome, and Sky in general did today, with some indicating they don’t think Froome/Sky did it clean.

Neither do I. If you feel differently more power to your ability to suspend logic.

I’ve never been able to be one of those people. You know how I figured out there was no Santa? When I was 6 I came to the conclusion it wasn’t possible so I quit believing and then later my older brother confirmed it.

My belief in Lance Armstrong went much the same way. Initially I was a believer than I came to the conclusion that with all the evidence it simply wasn’t possible he did what he did without doping. Confirmation didn’t come until much later.

Believers (myself included) explained Postal/Armstrong’s dominance away, much like Sky and Froome believers have done today.

We wanted to believe so we did. We thought it was unfair to accuse them without proof. Unfortunately the science of testing (and more importantly, the lack of true desire by the powers that could clean up cycling to do so) lags and therefore the proof isn’t available until well after the races are won, the money made and the records put into the record books.

Many still want to believe so they do, despite the déjà vu of it all.

The real question is how many times does the sport have to go through this before sincere and serious efforts are made to clean it up? Apparently, still more.

Personally, I believe Bradley Wiggins and Chris Froome use(d) performance enhancing drugs and at some time in the future we will get confirmation. Too little too late.

Why is it that the sport of cycling, specifically the teams, owners, riders, cycling organizations, watchdogs, journalists, etc. don’t make serious efforts to cleanup the sport. That’s a rhetorical question for it always comes down to money.

Many in my Twitter feed questioned and made light of the struggles of TeJay van Garderen today. In my mind, the sport would be better served by talking about Froome’s and his team’s too good to be true performances.

Until/unless that discussion gets loud and occurs among journalists, not only fans, where the forces of the sport can no longer ignore it – and we refuse to accept “not normal” performances as normal – we’ll get more of the same.

Stage 9:

2013 tour9

As silly as it may sound, I expect Sky to turn it down a notch. They’re hearing all the chatter too and will want to minimize suspicion. Good luck with that.

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