- After winning a stage of the Tour de France, Thomas Voeckler was quoted as saying: “I dedicate this victory to myself.”
- Two-time Spanish Formula One world champion Fernando Alonso is planning to start a new professional cycling team with compatriot Alberto Contador, possibly sponsored by one of Alonso’s motorsports sponsors like Renault or Santander (bank). Ã‚Â Contador was quoted as saying:Ã‚Â “I only want to focus on the Tour de France, I will talk about my future after that,” said the Astana team leader. “This is only a rumor and I have a contract with Astana for another year.”
- There are mixed opinions about the approved radio ban for Tuesday’s (July 14) and Friday’s stages. Ã‚Â Cadel Evans says they’re not as crucial to the outcome as people make them out to be, while his compatriot Michael Rogers (Columbia-HTC) says it helps tremendously because everyone knows immediately who’s in a break and how fast they need to go to catch them. Ã‚Â The other debate is safety, with Jens Voight (Saxo Bank) stating that it’s important to know if there’s a wreck or road hazard up ahead. Ã‚Â By contrast, Dave Zabriskie (Garmin-Slipstream) said it creates pandemonium because all of a sudden you have everyone in the peloton being told to get to the front for an upcoming corner…all at the same time. Ã‚Â Armstrong, meanwhile, said radio silence would create a much more dangerous situation by required team directors to have to drive closer to the riders to be able to shout strategy out the window. As of this posting, the decision for radio bans on Stages 10 and 13 stand, but teams are meeting with the ASO and UCI today to try to reverse the decision.
- This week’s Tour de France racing should be a bunch of pack sprints and breakaways from non-GC threats, with the excitement coming on Friday as we get back into some mountains. Ã‚Â Then, next week, the Alps smack the riders some climbing, and the overalls should start to (finally) see some changes.
- The Armstrong – Contador power struggle, which Lance described by saying “there’s a little tension” between them, started first by Armstrong’s lucky break on Stage 3 and escalated by Contador’s mountain-top leap on Stage 7, should play out nicely in the Alps as they try to out climb each other.
- Ryder Hesjedal has no sense of smell. Ã‚Â How do we know this? Ã‚Â Read Dave Zabriskie’s tweet: “Ryder is perfect roommate. He has no sense of smell. You know what that means…”
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