TotW: Dope, sweat and taunts

We have much to get through this week so let’s get pedalling!

Mud packs

First off, the talk of the weekend was the CycloCross World Championships, which were all run on one day as the Ohio River decided to flood the next. So there was mud. Mud all over, especially on new Champ Sven Nys. I thought I’d start with this picture because it really does sum up a lot about why we all love cycling.

Sven Nys pic

Sometimes, athletes really do state the obvious. You know how you know Marianne Vos was the better rider? She won. But just in case that wasn’t clear, Katie Compton reminds us.

Compton's Vos comment

I mentioned the flooding, didn’t I? Well, Panache put out a cri de coeur and his prayer was answered.

Noah at CX Noah at CX 2

Panache was all over the Twitterstream over the weekend and he and Velocentric had some top tips for getting that CycloCross kit whiter than whiter!

Panache washing instructions

Next week, we’ll have a masterclass in folding napkins in the shape of swans!

Bruyneel’s cat

We had one full frontal doping confession last week. That was not, however, from Johan Bruyneel, but he might have sent his familiar.

Bruyneel sent cat

And this is what the mighty Samuel L Jackson said about it. (Okay, he might have been talking about someone else, but it fits! It fits!)

SLF shifty

And once again, Panache makes it into the column with this little gem.

Panache BruyneelWe await the start of the arbitration process for Bruyneel – or not as the case may be.

Chicken crosses the road

The full frontal doping confession I spoke of was, of course, that of Michael Rasmussen last week. For those who’ve just joined us, Rasmussen got chucked off the Tour in 2007 by his Rabobank team (the irony) while he was in the yellow jersey for lying about his whereabouts, something about Mexico and Italy and there might have been women involved. There certainly were doping products involved, as we found out Thursday.

Rasmussen list

Rasmussen 5 pic

Rasmussen 4

He’s named names, he’s apparently working on a book about how doping worked and USADA are now involved as well, probably because of the names he named and the doping that worked.

Rasmussen USADA interest

Rasmussen USADA interest 2

The thing that was incredibly difficult to believe, however, was that he said he hasn’t doped for the past three years. Really? Just like that, you decide to stop? Could it be because of the UCI rule that anyone busted for/admitting to doping from 2011 cannot then move into any sort of management role in cycling? And Rasmussen, when he comes back from his ban, wants to do just that? Coincidence?

Rasmussen 3

But it was good to see that, throughout it all, a few tweeters were able to put a cultural spin on the proceedings.

Rasmussen 1a

Rasmussen 2

An honourable man

One of the goals of the year for me is to actually meet Marco Pinotti. Everything I’ve heard about him, the way he conducts himself, the way he engages fans makes me think that he is just one honourable man. And you can’t meet enough of those in your lifetime. Here’s another reason to love Marco:

Marco based on facts 1

Marco based on facts 2

Sky splits the stream again

There’s no two ways about it. Sky is one of the most polarising teams in the peloton at the moment. It seems you either love them or hate them. Either you believe they’re the dope or you believe they are Oxiclean. And it has just kicked off big time between the two journalists who were the driving forces behind the unmasking of Lance Armstrong, David Walsh and Paul Kimmage.

Kimmage Walsh 3

Kimmage Walsh 2

Kimmage Walsh 1

Remember back a few years ago, Paul Kimmage was given the same offer and then that offer was rescinded (check his timeline for the full story). This was Kimmage’s immediate response.

Kimmage bitter 1

Kimmage bitter 2

And a few pros/cons from the Twitterati

Kimmage Walsh Festina girl

Kimmage Walsh Frith Street

Tweets too good to get away

These are a bit random, but they were too good to leave on the desktop. First up, Jens even makes snow bend to his will…

Jens iglu

A couple of pictures of That Boy Phinney – although I would not get into a helicopter if he had that look on his face …

Phinney & Blythe helishot

More mud … Give me one of those sponge mitts, I’ll wash your face, Taylor!

Phinney peloton cover pic

Phinney peloton cover pic 2

The obligatory Cancellara tweets

Every week, people. Every week.

Fabs legs shaved

Spartacus makes a girl get inked …

Fabs getting her through the pain

I’m being taunted over here!

And as usual, Velocast is toying with me. First he offers the sweat of Spartacus for every subscription. I figured if I subscribed, like, a million times, I’d get a bucketload of Cancellara but it doesn’t look like Scott can guarantee this! What?!? False advertising!

Velocast subscription Fabs sweat

And then he just started casting aspersions. Oh, and once I listen to the new Eurosport podcast, I suspect I owe Mr O’Raw lunch in Bruges, as I made a stupid-ass bet about vocabulary. Because I’m that rock’n’roll, I make bets about vocabulary! (He’ll get a waffle … ONE waffle.)

Me Bruge Velocast

And to sum up

I will leave you with this picture of Heinrich Haussler by Chris Keiser. Why? Because like the opening picture of Sven Nys, this also epitomises why we love cycling. It’s beautiful, isn’t it?

Haussler pic

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