Where do I begin? To tell the story of how great a race can be? There were so many stories within stories at Milan-SanRemo – from the weather (one rider peed on his own hands in an attempt to get them warm) to the final podium (including a rider who surely deserves the name Monuments Man) to a team who seems to want to embarrass the hell out of their riders with the stupidest helmet-goggle combo ever. Let’s get to it …
At least it wasn’t snowing.
Once it started raining, everyone was in black. Thank God for the flourescents.
Riders should have known something was up if they saw Sky’s feed guy bundled up like an Arctic explorer.
So between the bed and the start line, Pippo realised that he was going to need a wetsuit and swim cap. When I first saw this, I thought Pippo had taken up triathlon.
My, what a difference 300kms makes. While Pippo and the boys were bundling up in neoprene and swim caps in Milan, in San Remo, we had two commentators who believed in dressing up on the occasion of the first Monument of the 2014 season. Hey guys, how you doin’?
The race unfolds
We know Heinrich Haussler is hard as nails and we can only imagine the derision ‘the ass saver’ is met with on the IAM bus. (If you missed it yesterday, the ass saver was a strange plastic tongue that was attached just under the saddle to keep riders from getting six hours worth of ice-cold colonic irrigation as they rode…)
MSR is such a popular race, rock stars ride in it.
Fabs goes back for dry gloves. Chris Juul-Jensen had another solution.
As we know, the selection was not made on the Poggio and it came down to a bunch sprint. Alexander Kristoff took the top step honours. Look at the faces behind him – including a sorrowful looking, race favourite Peter Sagan right in back.
Anyone who has been following Tweets over the past few years will know, I do love teammates that hug each other and cry when they win. And yesterday was no exception. Luca Paolini showed what putting your ego aside and working for your teammate means. Luckily, he didn’t have to pee on his own hands – he poured a bidon of hot tea over them. Must have helped!
Anyone who has been following Tweets over the past few years will know of my undying devotion to Fabian Cancellara (some say obsession but that’s cruel). He came in second yesterday and uncharacteristically slammed his handlebars in frustration. … I must go to him …
And then we had third place, which went to Ben Swift, who looked rather happy with that result!
While the guys didn’t need to chip off the icicles from their helmets this year, they did need to spend some time unthawing. And there’s no denying, it was a long long day for the guys.
Okay, this is full Fabs adoration. If you don’t want to see it, scroll down a little.
So last week, Fabs was asked why he didn’t namecheck Wiggins in his list of riders to look out for in Roubaix. He asked why he should. This was met with a quote from Wiggins a few days later: “I think it’s his way of dealing with the pressure and a way of getting the respect he thinks he deserves as someone who has dominated the races.”
“A way of getting the respect he thinks he deserves”? Wow. Well, Brad, let’s look at what Fabs has done to think he deserves respect?
And what has Wiggins done in the Monuments? He’s ridden one of them in this get-up. No wonder Fabs should be scared …
My hissy fit has ended. Let us continue.
Will ride for Haribou
Ant McCrossan asked a great question the other day, following on from the Ronde prizes a few weeks ago of home appliances – for both men and women. So what are the weirdest prizes a rider has won?
Will ride in a horrendous helmet
I’ve figured it out. One of the sponsors of Garmin-Sharp is actually paying JV to see just how far his riders will go to win the ‘Most Atrocious Helmet/Goggle Combo’. We have a winner. So now this madness can stop, can’t it?
Could someone tell Kristoff that the competition is not open to everyone, so he doesn’t need to try to win?
While we’re on the subject of crazy Garmin attire, let’s have a look at the nasal strips. David Millar is famous for pilin’ ’em high – I swear he wears about 10 nasal strips one atop the other in a race. But Ben King goes one better – his strips are argyle. (Didn’t Ben King have bad goggles on last week? I think he did.)
Why is Lochlan Morton always smiling? Because he hasn’t fallen for the sponsors’ tricks and he goes out for a ride without looking like a visitor from outer space.
Oh Carlos, those nasal strips aren’t going to save you. You will be hugged. At the very least.
Let’s move away from the nasal strips, shall we? Let’s just sigh over the ever-fanciable Manuel Quinziato and his carload of mates.
And his cafe full of personalised coffee and teammates. Very sociable is our Manuel.
Oh I laughed and laughed at this picture for the come-hither, slightly coy pose of the behelmeted moto-cameraman. While eating a banana.
There’s only one phrase for the tweet below: NO CAKE FOR YOU! But PhilGil did give it a go in the latter stages of the race. Let’s hope he finds his mojo for the Ardennes.
Teach your children well. #CapsNotHats
Lovely piece of retro design, this.
I’d need to talk to Fabs personally about my credit limit.
Hark! Is Team Sky PR getting a sense of humour?
Hubba Hubba! The Ladies Favourite looking lean and lovely.
The last word