Monday Musings – Death of a Legend and Suisse Wrap-up

1. I don’t like it either. Race reports are smaller. Less photos. Information is scattered and difficult to locate. Don’t get me wrong, it’s still the go-to site for all our cycling needs, but I can’t help the sense I’m beginning to the feel the way I’ve come to feel about Velonews‘ new print layout and schedule. The worst part? Apparently they’ve eliminated their entire history in the process. Wondering who won the 5th stage of the 2001 Paris-Nice? Forget it. This leaves a considerable void; hopefully not for long.

So now where will you go for all the latest news and reports? Share your thoughts in the “Comments” section below.

And does anyone happen to know a good database for cycling records and results? We need one now.

UPDATE: You can access the “old” site by clicking “Full Archive” on the top right menu on the “new” site. Thanks for the tip, Jeremy!

2. In case you missed it, Columbia-Highroad owned the Tour de Suisse, romping to wins in 6 of the race’s 9 stages. Even more impressive? They did it with 5 different riders!

And lest we forget, Saxo Bank won the other 3 stages and the GC. Cancellara’s win has some folks claiming the race wasn’t hard enough. To me, it just shows the effects of a spring more or less “off” for Spartacus.

And no, he’s not a GC-rider! Remember the 2006 Hincapie Experiment? Let’s learn from our mistakes. That said, if Fabian doesn’t take the yellow jersey when the Tour begins on July 4th, it will be huge upset.

3. Did you notice that Frank Schleck didn’t start the final stage yesterday? Did you notice Andy Schleck finished 15th? I know everyone’s talking about the impending Astana feud, but it will also be interesting to see how the Brothers Schleck interact come Tour-time. Is Frank a step behind Andy, or is he simply timing his form a bit later?

Update: Apparently, Frank’s suffering from knee pain following his fall in Amstel. This will be interesting to follow, especially since it will take the pressure off him come July. Don’t write him off yet.

4. Roman Kreuzinger did not defend his win in last year’s Tour de Suisse, but that’s a good thing. Ever-present near the front when the race mattered, Kreuzinger looks all set for a banner July. He can climb and he can time trial (better than most of the the other GC favorites despite the above photo). A top-5 pacing is certainly within his reach, especially if his talented young teammates can rally around him.

5. Just a hunch, but in yet another demonstration of just how beneficial taking the spring “off” can be, put Alessandro Ballan down for the Italian National Championship and a stage in this year’s Tour.

6. The TDS also marked the return of Kim Kirchen. A proven contender, Kirchen gives Columbia at least one rider to back for the GC. (But do they need to? Wouldn’t winning say, 15 stages, be enough for them?)

7. In tech news–yes, we’re not unaware of the technical side of things–Frank Schleck appears to be riding a new Specialized S-Works Tarmac in this photo from the weekend. Maybe it’s a new paint job, but now’s the time of year when companies begin unveiling their latest and greatest.

That’s it for today! Remember to share your comments with the rest of us. Have a great week!

About Whit

My experiences might easily fit many cycling fans' definitions of “living the dream.” Since getting hooked on the sport watching Lance Armstrong win the 1993 U.S. Pro Championship, I've raced as an amateur on Belgian cobbles, traveled Europe to help build a European pro team, and piloted that team from Malaysia to Mont Ventoux. As a former assistant director sportif with Mercury-Viatel, I've also seen the less dreamy side of the sport – the side rife with broken contracts, infighting, and positive dope tests. These days, I live with my lovely wife in Pennsylvania and share my experiences and views on the sport at Bicycling Magazine, the Embrocation Cycling Journal, and at my own site, Pavé.
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