We're effectively half way through L'Grand Boucle and and for the first post back I'll start with an opinion before I get stuck into the holiday review, bike builds, weblinks, verbage.
As a caveat, I'll pass on a gem that a dispatcher once gave me 'Opinions are like backsides. We all have one, most of the stink''. (I've used photoshop to filter the colourful language)
You can decide if this one is coming up roses.
On my 'brief' holiday to warmer climes, I stepped into a golf shop.
It's been a decade since I've seriously swung a club. In my last matches of Pennant, I carried a football in my bag to help pass the time waiting on the tee, or waiting to bomb a green. This was only slightly more interesting than watching The Ashes.
Back then metal drivers had become the norm, but I still used a persimmon 'wood' driver. There was something about the 'crack' and feel of it, opposed to the lifeless 'ping' of these whiz bang composite clubs.
Back then, they had limits on clubhead since and it appears in my abscence they have thrown these out the window and now club heads resemble shoe boxes.
Golf balls now go further and fly truer, not to mention if you skull a modern ball it wont tear in two. Metal clubs hit the ball harder, and straighter with less effort, and consequently championship courses are now an extra few kilometres in length so the Pro Tour isn't as easy as PUTT-PUTT.
What the hell does this have to do with cycling?
Lighter bikes, stiffer frames, faster wheels, better training methods, dieting, drugs.... boring (also chanted at The Ashes)
Are faster tour speeds really 'faster' if all this technology makes it easier?
Regaling Tours gone by richens commentary, because the glory days of fierce rivalry, trash talking, and a peleton sans radios made for good viewing. Not to mention the steel frames with flash paint....
How can we make the viewing more colourful? It would appear some of the french public have taken matters into their own hands.
Let's hope the tour gets the 'injection' it needs in the final week - not the one that reveals how filthy certain riders are. I really couldn't care less who is cheating, I just want to be entertained.
If the peleton doesn't EXPLODE on the ascent to Verbier, I might take up Ice fishing for thrilling vision until Ventoux.
In case you missed it, quote of the week by Mike Tomalaris. 'Cadel is intelligent. He reads books.' - I just finished one myself.
Take a deep breath - next post is HUGE.