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Thread: Tour de France 2007

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    Smells Like Teen Spirit jmcclain19's Avatar
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    Tour de France 2007



    It's that time of year again - today's the start of the 2007 Tour de France.

    Anyone have any favorites this year?

    Discovery picked up Levi Leipheimer, an interesting development because they wouldn't pay him the big bucks if they didn't think he couldn't win.

    Dennis Menchov & Carlos Sastre both did well last year and have big time teams backing them up so they could be contenders for the yellow jersey. Personally I'll be pulling for the Krazy Kazakh Alexander Vinokourov & former mountain bike champion Aussie Cadel Evans.

    The Tour started today in all places, downtown London.

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    Danger is my business! oneupper's Avatar
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    Re: Tour de France 2007

    Quote Originally Posted by jmcclain19 View Post


    Anyone have any favorites this year?
    I'll take the guy with the biggest syringe.
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    Re: Tour de France 2007

    Quote Originally Posted by oneupper View Post
    I'll take the guy with the biggest syringe.
    I'd bet that juicing is just as prevalent in the NFL as it is in the TDF. The difference is that the media doesn't like to take on the NFL.

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    Smells Like Teen Spirit jmcclain19's Avatar
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    Re: Tour de France 2007

    Quote Originally Posted by Mutaman View Post
    I'd bet that juicing is just as prevalent in the NFL as it is in the TDF. The difference is that the media doesn't like to take on the NFL.
    Amen to that. HGH is candy to quite a few NFL players.

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    SERP deep cover ops WebScorpion's Avatar
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    Re: Tour de France 2007

    My heart says Leipheimer...American team with an American lead rider, but I just don't see Levi having enough intestinal fortitude to take it all. Somewhere in the mountains somebody has got to forcefully take the race from the other contenders and every day after that fend them all off. The only way I see Levi taking it is staying close to the leader and finishing much stronger than he ever has in previous years.

    Vinkourov and Sastre both look like good choices, but I think the surprise this year will be the Spaniard Oscar Pereiro.

    Here's something I never have understood: David Millar, a Brit, rides for a Spanish team, while the only British team in this year's contest has Russian Alexander Efimkin leading. I guess it's just like other professional sports where athletes play for the highest bidder, but if I were Millar I'd really rather ride for a hometown team. Russia doesn't have a team, so I guess Efimkin's choice is more understandable. I like that Discovery usually has an American leader, so I'll be pulling for Levi.

    Truthfully, Leipheimer and Hincapie, the only 2 Americans left on the Discovery channel team are getting pretty old...maybe this is the year they pull out all the stops. But their teammate, the young Ukrainian Yaroslov Popovych appears to be a much stronger rider. Has the winner of the Tour de France ever NOT been his teams leader?

    "Okay you guys, pair up in threes!" --Yogi Berra

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    Re: Tour de France 2007

    If Leipheimer were to win, the Euros would blow a gasket.

    My guess is Pereiro will ride like the devil in an attempt to get a win without an asterisk. Though he slipped through the cracks a bit last year when the field allowed him to get off the front in a monster breakaway during one stage (because he wasn't viewed as that much of a challenge). It won't happen again.

    Andreas Kloden looked stellar during the prologue. He's my nominal pick. One kid who could break out though is Frank Schleck. He won on the Alpe D'Huez last year so you know he's got climbing legs.
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    Re: Tour de France 2007

    Vino wiped out and wound up losing over a minute on today's stage. He blew apart his team, and probably himself, trying to claw back time over the final 20 km. I'm still amazed his team nominated Vino the main man instead of Kloden. Vino's simply too mistake prone to win the TDF. Yes, he can have some spectacular stages, but he doesn't pace himself well, he mistimes his attacks and he's a poor bike handler. Meanwhile Kloden is superior in time trials, a consistent climber and he has good long haul race instincts.
    Last edited by M2; 07-12-2007 at 05:01 PM.
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    SERP deep cover ops WebScorpion's Avatar
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    Re: Tour de France 2007

    I heard Kloden crashed also and may have fractured his coccyx. Often times, it's just a race of attrition...how someone can consistently avoid major problems over the duration of that race is beyond me.

    "Okay you guys, pair up in threes!" --Yogi Berra

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    Re: Tour de France 2007

    Quote Originally Posted by WebScorpion View Post
    I heard Kloden crashed also and may have fractured his coccyx. Often times, it's just a race of attrition...how someone can consistently avoid major problems over the duration of that race is beyond me.
    Really? I knew he fell, but he got back up and finished with the lead pack. That's one tough dude if he did the last half of the race with a fractured coccyx.

    Speaking of attrition, watch 'em drop like flies during the four stages from Saturday-Wednesday. I don't think even the days off tomorrow and Monday are going to help. On Saturday they get the Col de la Colombiere, which is a ten-mile beast. They hit it after roughly 100 miles of hard riding. Then on Sunday they finish up with three climbs like Colombiere. After the Monday breather, they start off with a wicked climb up the Col de l'Iseran. Literally, it's like a roller coaster, the gun goes off and they start going straight up. Then after 40 miles of snaking mountain roads they get a double dose climb. Basically the go straight up for eight miles, get a three-mile breather and then do it again for 11 miles on the Col du Galibier. Then on Tuesday it's a 140-mile haul into Marseille, punctuated by a bunch of smaller hills that are going sneak up riders who take them for granted.
    Last edited by M2; 07-12-2007 at 06:26 PM.
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    Smells Like Teen Spirit jmcclain19's Avatar
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    Re: Tour de France 2007

    Quote Originally Posted by M2 View Post
    If Leipheimer were to win, the Euros would blow a gasket.

    My guess is Pereiro will ride like the devil in an attempt to get a win without an asterisk. Though he slipped through the cracks a bit last year when the field allowed him to get off the front in a monster breakaway during one stage (because he wasn't viewed as that much of a challenge). It won't happen again.

    Andreas Kloden looked stellar during the prologue. He's my nominal pick. One kid who could break out though is Frank Schleck. He won on the Alpe D'Huez last year so you know he's got climbing legs.
    I think Pereiro doesn't have a chance simply because w/o that monster stage last year - he's a tag along in the 10-20 range rather than a podium finisher. He kept up- which still showcases his skills, but I still think that's a one stage mirage.

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    Re: Tour de France 2007

    The Spanish are taking over this race. They've got three of the top five and 13 of the top 30. Alejandro Valverde is looking great. Iban Mayo is riding better than he has since he was Lance Armstrong's main man in the mountains. Alberto Contador may be taking over the Team Discovery leader spot. Carlos Sastre has been lurking all race, clearly looking ot make a move in the Pyrenees.

    Meanwhile Vino is toast. He's losing time in every difficult stage and he's given too much time to too many guys to get it all back from them. Kloden needs to be installed as the main man on that team immediately. Pereiro also looks to be done. He'll be supporting Valverde now. Denis Menchov cracked today too, so Rabobank will need to try to spring Rasumssen in the Pyrenees if the team wants a shot at the yellow jersey in Paris.
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    Re: Tour de France 2007

    mmmm Michael Rasmussen has been dropped by Denmark's national cycling team.

    http://news.bbc.co.uk/sport1/hi/othe...ng/6907568.stm

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    Re: Tour de France 2007

    Quote Originally Posted by RawOwl UK View Post
    mmmm Michael Rasmussen has been dropped by Denmark's national cycling team.

    http://news.bbc.co.uk/sport1/hi/othe...ng/6907568.stm
    I wonder if we can ever have a Tour de France without some doping story or scandal popping up.

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    Re: Tour de France 2007

    I don't think the results are official if there isn't a doping scandal.
    It's sort of like the wind aided track times.

    By the way for us Xenophobic cycling fans, how does Leipenheimer look, 3:52 back isn't astronomical, and I thought I read somewhere that Rasmussen isn't expected to last so he's really only about a minute back of the rest of the contenders.
    Are his chances good? 50/50? or somewhere just north of Tyler Hamiltons?
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    Posting in Dynarama M2's Avatar
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    Re: Tour de France 2007

    Quote Originally Posted by Hoosier Red View Post
    I don't think the results are official if there isn't a doping scandal.
    It's sort of like the wind aided track times.

    By the way for us Xenophobic cycling fans, how does Leipenheimer look, 3:52 back isn't astronomical, and I thought I read somewhere that Rasmussen isn't expected to last so he's really only about a minute back of the rest of the contenders.
    Are his chances good? 50/50? or somewhere just north of Tyler Hamiltons?
    Leipheimer's supposedly waiting to pounce in the Pyrenees. I'm a little suspicious of that. I've never seen him take command in the mountains and this race, ultimately, is going to someone who can. The good news he's in the top 8 and the race probably going to one of those guys.

    Michael Rasmussen - Brilliant climber, horrid in the time trials. He's going to lose the yellow jersey on Saturday. His only real chance is to blow everybody away in the Pyrenees.

    Alejandro Valverde - Has been destroyed by the steep climbs in the Pyrenees before, good in time trials though.

    Iban Mayo - Went from supposed challenger to Lance Armstrong to afterthought and now he's back in contention. Will probably slip in the standings in the time trial, but he could win this thing in the mountains.

    Cadel Evans - Could find himself in the yellow jersey after Saturday, doubt he could hold it through Sunday.

    Alberto Contador - Most explosive climber in the early stages of the race. Had a very good prologue time trial. If he's close after Saturday, he's my pick to blow this race open in the mountains.

    Carlos Sastre - Well, he should be fresh seeing that he's spent the entire race so far on other peoples' wheels. He seems content to lurk and to go for the win by having one big stage on a day when everybody else cracks. It won't help that he's a poor time trial racer.

    Andreas Kloden - He was second in the prologue and could win Saturday's time trial. He's been on the TDF podium twice, something none of the other top contenders can claim. I figure the story next week will be Kloden trying to hold off Contador.

    Levi Leipheimer - Seemingly he's got the same plan as Sastre, but if he can't leapfrog Contador in the time trial then he's got to help the kid take over in the Pyrenees.
    Baseball isn't a magic trick ... it doesn't get spoiled if you figure out how it works. - gonelong

    I'm witchcrafting everybody.


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