Oh, the Veloshire was not the happiest of places last week. It had its moments of brilliance – the turnout for the Tour of Britain, the renewal of the Bernie+Cav=Bromance vows – but it also had some surly Surrey citizens, snakes in bikes, an uncomfortable Worlds marriage and, most discouraging of all, a dream postponed.
So, it isn’t that easy to buy a cycling team, then, huh? Unfortunately, it was announced yesterday that Fernando Alonso was not able to do the deal to buy Euskaltel-Euskadi. If you missed it, here is The Guardian’s report. And below is Alonso’s official statement.
This blog post by Al Hinds for SBS considers the ramifications of this – both for good and for bad (particularly bad for those riders and staff who find themselves scrambling around for contracts).
It seems harsh to the Carrots and all their fans to think they had a reprieve only to have the rug pulled out from under them. Let’s hope Alonso is able to put together a team for 2015.
the Wetlands Britain
The Tour of Britain is not a WorldTour race but you’d think it was by the crowds at the roadside and the quality of the peloton that took to the wet and windy roads.
The eventual victor, Sir Bradley Wiggins was no longer the skinnier than skinny Wiggo from last year. His weight gain wasn’t just pork scratchings and cakes. Noooo, it was planned in order to give him more oomph for the Worlds TT and perhaps the much-speculated Hour attempt that has been neither confirmed nor denied. But with more meat on his bones, it could have been a problem if he’d had to throw his Pinarello into the ditch at the TT this week – the lions would have seen him as just one big soft underbelly …
Is it just me or does Wiggo look like the original Tron? (the one on the right, if you’re wondering.) Just me? Really?
The rain and the wind, however, did not deter the riders and some even had fun, like the ever-popular Jack Bauer.
Oooph, this guy below doesn’t look like he’s having fun.
But that might be because he wasn’t with Ladies’ Favourite™ Bernie Eisel. The bromance continued on UK roads last week! It was beautiful to see. Cav looks so much happier in the picture below, no?
This one is for the ladies … Bernie unobstructed.
This middle tweet from Brian Holm – Most Dandy goes to David Millar? Really? For extravagant use of multiple nasal strips, perhaps.
Regardless of dandies and storm clouds and safari parks, the Tour of Britain was a roaring success. (See what I did there! Gold, Jerry! Gold!)
But not all was well in the Veloshire. Many of the privileged people of Surrey did not like the road closures and general mayhem the Tour of Britain brought to their fair county and they struck up a petition. They didn’t get very far. (Full disclosure: I live in Surrey. I did not sign – nor was I asked to sign – the petition.)
But this does lead into an interesting article I saw in The Guardian the other day, about the war between motorists and cyclists. I’d love to hear what you think on this. Comments at the bottom, please!
In the meantime, let’s end this discussion with one of the nicest pictures I’ve seen this week. (What amazing teeth!). Caps not hats were definitely in order on the ToB sidelines.
You gotta love a guy who has a sense of humour. Densen Jensen speaks!
And they called it puppy love.
Wouldn’t it be a wonderful world if one day a team of riders just came out and did a time trial in chef’s hats and whatnot? I think it would be divine. (Those little walking records are gonna get run over. It will all end in tears.)
The BMC TTT camp with That Boy Phinney holding court.
Speaking of That Boy Phinney, maybe it’s my age, maybe it’s the fact I live in Surrey, but I have no idea what this means.
“My name is Sylvain Chavanel and my specialty subject is the Kuku Penthouse.”
They have snakes in Surrey?
I love ice cream. Now I know why. “Fabs, give me two scoops of tutti frutti.” “Kitty, your restraining order is still in effect. Go away.”
It was only the aforementioned restraining order that deterred me from jumping on a plane to Florence to scour the city for the Lost Power Meter of the Sacred Haunches™.
What was/is the big present? My mind boggles. One day … one day …
Speaking of the Worlds (which we kind of were), this just in on the uneasy marriage of Wiggins and Froome in Florence. (Wiggo promised to the ride for Froome in the road race but, well, kind of intimated that he wouldn’t actually talk to him.)
The Last Word
Oh, and the UCI presidency is up for grabs this week.