Experiencing Tour blog post withdrawal so here I am.
I woke up this morning thinking about what could have been if Hesjedal, Sanchez, Andy Shleck (and without brother Frank starting tomorrow), Danielson – who am I forgetting – were still in the Tour. Such a shame that stupid crashes took them all out. Our loss and of course theirs for not getting to race the race they all look forward to each year.
Any of the 4 could have been in the hunt for the final podium, and all of them would have raced and provided excitement and drama that this Tour has been sorely lacking.
The drama of the positive test of a banned substance by Frank Schleck doesn’t count. I was somewhat surprised that he left the race; it wasn’t required since the B sample hasn’t been tested. Certainly RadioShack doesn’t need any more bad press and maybe that’s how they made the decision or maybe they know the B sample will be positive too. Damn doping.
I hate that once again professional cyclists are being put in an unfair and inaccurate light – the general public has the idea all Tour riders dope. If other professional athletes were tested half as much as cyclists they would fare far worse in testing for banned substances, in my opinion. No, I don’t want performance enhancing drugs used by any athlete, but we know they are and yet cycling is the only sport that makes a serious effort to detect athletes using banned substances. So instead of bashing the sport of cycling we should ask the professional football, basketball and baseball organizations why they don’t implement similar anti-doping measures.
In the meantime we have two pivotal stages to look forward to – here’s to tomorrow and a fiercely contested stage 16 in the Pyrenees – I hope.