Lance has me confused.

My apologies to the Big Man, his post below was high end, but I can’t sleep right now, and I had some thoughts regarding what happened yesterday at the Tour floating around my head, I just felt like throwing out there.  From everything I’ve seen it seems like Schleck and Evans are the two who made out the best, one got the win, the other got some yellow, and both have time on Contador, who most had picked to win the Tour this year.  Lance had a rough day, full of bad luck, crashes, and large efforts just to try and get back to the leaders.  As things stand he is sitting in 61st place down on Evans by 11 minutes and 45 seconds.  Now let me preface what I am about to write with this, Lance could ride me off his wheel using just his left leg and pulling a boat anchor.  He is much more intelligent than I am when it comes to knowing how to win bike races.  I am well aware of all this, and know that I will probably come off like some asshole up on a high horse, I am okay with that.

Here is what confuses me:

“It’s definitely the end of the Tour de France, the end of Lance’s objective to win this Tour,” Bruyneel said in the finish in Avoriaz. (quote from article).

“When it rains it pours I guess.. Today was not my day needless to say. Quite banged but gonna hang in here and enjoy my last 2 weeks” (quote from Lance’s twitter account)

Now, I’m not sure if the injuries that Lance sustained from his crash are enough to force him to drop out of the Tour, or if they are that bad and he will be no where near full strength in the near future.  If that is the case, many could understand that, we’ve already seen it happen this year with guys like Vande Velde and Frank Schleck who took gnarly spills and have had to abandon due to the injuries they sustained.  So here is what I am confused about, if the injuries that Lance has sustained from his crashes in Stage 8 aren’t enough to force him to abandon the Tour, why are him and Bruyneel acting like his Tour is over?  Didn’t Lance come to the Tour to race against the best in the world, and try to win the Tour, not simply “enjoy” the Tour?

11 minutes and change isn’t necessarily an eternity, and there are two weeks left, and wasn’t Lance supposed to be the guy that never quit.  So he had a shitty day in the saddle, and lost some time, why not still try to win a stage, or attack to try and fuck over someone high on the GC that he may loathe for one reason or another?  Granted I was all of 5 years old when it happened, but what about back in 1989 on the final day, when everyone said LeMond had no chance to make up the 50 seconds that Fignon had on him.  LeMond ate a solid breakfast of nails and broken glass, then cranked a 55×12 gear to take the win.  And even though Landis was aided by all sorts of doping products back in 2006, after he had his shitty day, he didn’t roll over, he went out and made a batshit crazy attack on the entire peleton.

So yeah I am confused about what is going on with Lance right now.  Maybe this is his big tactical play, like in 2001 on the stage to Alpe D’Huez, getting T-Mobile to do all the work, then ripping their nuts off.  Maybe Lance and the RadioShack crew aren’t sure how bad his injuries are right now.  Maybe Lance had some sort of epiphany and realized that it would be nice to see what it is like to just ride the Tour without any objectives.  I’m not sure, but what I do know is that it would be shame to see Lance throw his hands up an quit after one bad day.  Feel free to share your thoughts…

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About 40 Hands

A fan of riding bikes with one gear, malt liquor, riding without knowing how many miles I’ve covered, and strip clubs that let you bring your own keg. I typically have a stupid grin on my face, it is because deep down I know that no matter what, my mom thinks I’m cool. Denver, Colorado, USA

48 thoughts on “Lance has me confused.

  1. To be honest, he’s not really a top contender in my eyes. Five years down the track he’s just not the threat he once was to the rest of the guys. His only hope this time was to ride solid and hope Contador/Schleck blow up and no-one else rides out of their skin, then have a couple of exceptional days himself.

    Now with a run of bad luck, he’s lost massive amounts of time that could only be made up by some legendary circumstances such as Lemond getting the heads up and all aeroed up and efficient for the TT against Fignon fighting his disc wheels, Andy being the only hard nut prepared for fighting over the snowy Gavia, or Floyd ‘getting drunk’ and then smashing everyone to bits. Or maybe if everyone else got aids or something.

    He’s done for, this is just like watching the Merckx documentary where he rode a couple more tours than he even thinks he should of, and pretty much just suffered where he once dominated, a little sad to watch, but not demeaning to his achievments. Dope or not, dick or not, cycling is awesome and Lance has won a bunch of big races plus 7 Tours, he is a legend, I hope he nobly suffers on to the end of his last tour. Stage win maybe?

  2. …i’d bet that if the ol’ tejas-ian gets an opportunity to really go for it, he’ll give it his best shot but how many team directors are gonna give him a chance to get away to make up “that” much time…

    …escape for a stage win ???…totally possible but he’d be monitored closely enough that it would only come about at the end of a stage, not somewhere that he could really do damage…ie: ride himself back into contention…

    …nobody but nobody is gonna underestimate the talents of even a 38 year old lance armstrong…not a chance…when ya got a man on the ropes, well, i’m just sayin’…

    …& lance isn’t gonna be opposed to riding as a “team guy”…radio shack & bruyneel are gonna be around for a while…he’s pals with both…

  3. to see a bad ass stage win like floyd delivered would be RAD!
    not over till its over
    either good bluffs or real class

  4. I’d love to see one of the guys not on the favored list – Evans, Pistolero and Schleck – throw a spanner into the script. Or a molotov cocktail in the works.

    I want madness.

  5. I keep expecting an IED or some shit. Ah well… maybe there’s a few more good stack-ups like those from the first few days.

  6. If he keeps being the guy who never gives up, all he does is sink Levi’s chances. Lance owns part of the Radioshack team and will own it next year, it’s better for him to swallow his pride and pick up a few water bottles for a guy who could do podium or better than to piss everyone off with that Texan ‘it ain’t over ’till it’s over’ attitude.

    Besides it’d be nice to see Lance work for someone who’s helped him out all these years. Doesn’t make a bad story.

  7. Lance could be sandbagging, but not for eleven minutes. He’s got to know that Evans, Contador, and Schleck are not Jan Ullrich. He can’t just stand up and ride away from them in the mountains. All three of them have solid team support and reputations for being un-droppable. They might let him go for a stage win, but the leash will be short.

  8. I would think all the conversation should now be about Levi, 2 min plus out. The best thing Radio Shack could do is pull off something to throw a monkey wrench in the works, AND do it by not slapping a testosterone patch on their crotches.

  9. The Texan might have some realestate issues placing all those patches… Just sayin’

  10. I agree with specialneedz assessment. The big 3 are not going to let Lance have a legendary kind of day. Besides, Landis broke my heart with his ride, and I’m just not ready to love again anyway.

  11. Landis outs Lance, Lance Magically falls the very next day, abandons race…
    Now in TDF he doesn’t have the “Juice” to keep up…not too complicated.

  12. Its obvious that big Tex doesn’t have the same program that he had during his 7 tours . without dope , he is less than better than anybody . I knew that Floyd would ruin his life someday . That was a Karma disaster on the Ramaz…………

  13. @STM without dope they’re all worse than they are without. Lance competed against other dopers in his prime–and a lot of them probably still are.

  14. I enjoyed his suffering and failure. I want more. It’s funny watching this happen on VERSUS especially. It’ll be funny watching him squirm under the scrutinty of the Feds. Payback is a bitch.

  15. @MarvinK – I don’t want to put words in your mouth, but I do want to say the following:
    The concept that all was fair due to the widespread doping is ridiculous. Not everyone doped and the concept would further require that to advance a cycling career a rider would have to be willing to dope. Basically, operating in this fashion reduces cycling to an entity that is no longer a sport, but is the equivalent of the WWF on bicycles.

  16. Whatever program Lance is on now, it was good enough to put five minutes into Popovych. How’s that gotta suck? You retire on top from a team full of studs including a young rock star being groomed to be the next you. Five years later, he’s still on your grand tour short list despite not being able to even hold the wheel of an old man who just gave a master seminar on asphalt surfing. I thought Johann was supposed to know how to put a team together.

  17. Lance had an outside shot at best at the beginning of the race. To win he needed everything to go smoothly AND for some of the other contenders to have bad luck. Well, it didn’t work out that way. He will be watched closely and there is just no chance he will be able to get all the time back and win. Contador will rip his own legs off before he lets Lance get too far up the road.

  18. Holy Crap Folks! Why all the Lance bashing? The guy won SEVEN TDF’s and retired for a few years and came back. The only reason he isn’t in the top 5 right now is because he flatted on the cobbles and wrecked two times yesterday! Dopping? He is tested more than anyone and comes out clean! If you don’t believe it, then attack the system…not Lance

  19. Bondo – The reasons he isn’t even sniffing the top 50 is because he’s old, he’s not blood doping anymore, and karma is….well, karma is real. Lance may have been The Boss for a long time, but even The Boss gets whacked at the end of the story. This is minute 60 in a two hour movie about him someday – where it all starts to really unravel.

  20. You are HIGH JewFro! You been watching the Tour or no? He flatted on the cobbles and crashed twice yesterday. Why blame that on his age? Karma might be another story but without the flat and crashes, he would be next to Andy, Cadel, Alberto without question. What’s age got to do with it?

  21. Bondo – Shoulda, coulda, woulda. A tired racer makes mistakes, and he’s gotta be tired of Floyd, tired of a 38 year old body in a young man’s sport, tired in soul, and tired enough to hit his pedal on a curb at 60K…..a mistake he would have never made before. Yes the flat on the cobbles was bad timing/luck, but step away from the Versus/Velonews coverage for a minute and you’ll see a reality for him that…bites right now.

    Undeniably he’s an incredible athlete, but to consider him a serious contender this year? Only in the US media.

  22. …i agree, bondo…

    …a few folks around here seem to forget that after ‘retiring’, the man came back one year ago @ 37 to the biggest, baddest bike race on the planet & placed 3rd…i’ll repeat that in case anyone forgot or wasn’t listening – 3rd

  23. …yadda, yadda, jewfro…you might not have considered him to be a serious contender this year but you’re not ‘berto contador…

  24. Lance had had bollocks for luck this year. Matty D. is right— to win the Tour, everything has to go perfectly, and this year it’s been pretty fucking far from perfect for Lance.

    I think he’s a threat for a stage win, and he could also help Levi, who is a (very) dark horse. Menchov.

  25. JewFro – I respect your opinion and it’s quite believable to say the least. 38 years old in the TDF is old for anyone and especially at that level. However, I disagree with your analysis of the race and how things have come together. Instead, I believe fate and luck have hit Lance is all the bad ways. It’s not like he got dropped on a climb or anything. Don’t forget his Prologue TT which was pretty impressive for any Old Guy. It’s easy, and I don’t blame you, to say any mistake or mishap is because of his age. Oh well, it’s over for Lance this year and I hope he pulls for Levi or even Andy or Cadel. Anything other than Cuntador.

  26. I don’t buy the bad luck excuse. It’s not like he broke his collar bone in three places when he went down on the cobbles. All of the crashes he’s been in have been pretty minor physically. It’s the chasing back on afterwards that’s really kicking his ass. If he had the legs and the team he had five years ago he’d be in yellow right now.

  27. you all LOVE CANCER!!!!!! Non patriotic, Lance hating Fascists!!!
    I now have more than 1 tinfoil hat….

  28. Why’s he even at the back for the crashes in the first place? Luck my ass. He’s riding like someone who doesn’t race very often. First rule of racing is: STAY AT THE FRONT. He doesn’t stand a chance against Contador, Vino, Schleck, Evans, Basso, etc. etc. the list goes on. He was only 2 minutes down at one point and that pussy gave up. It was a shame to watch. He used to be such a hardass. The only way he even got third last year is because he was teammates with contador. If he were any kind of teammate, he would kill himself to get levi on the podium. His race is run. I bet all 4 of the guys who went down in that second crash he was in yesterday all chased back up and got some time back. Quittttter.

  29. @Drug— Lance did chase back after his first crash, due to rider error. He lost time on the second crash, when a tire rolled off, hit the deck hard and never got back on. The mechanic who prepped his bike was probably executed for that one. The third crash was caused by an inept Euskatel rider— by that time, it was just ridiculous.

    Seriously, rolling a tire off can end a guy’s Tour. Remember a guy named Beloki?

  30. Lance was near the front when he crashed hard, in front of Schleck I believe.
    Crashing a bike can hurt like hell, so I wouldn’t say it is a given anyone should just be able to chase back on after something like that. That shit can take a lot out of you. Particularly momentum.

    He’ll rub on a bunch of cortisone and be fine…

  31. YAAAAAWWWWWWN. Really, after all these years we’re still kvetching about ‘does he or doesn’t he’? Do we all really think it’s just our sport deserves to question le dopage? How about a little love for the World Crup, or Wimpleton? You think it’s easy to run 90 min. every other day? Take cleats to the chest and bounce back? Waddabout tennis? Dope costs fucking money – yet no one’s pointing fingers in the big money games that dominate sport in a much larger way than cycling. Meanwhile, this is hands down best TdF in years, mainly due to two things – they finally shook up the course selection, and the young guns are finally shoving the old farts out of the way. As for dope, anyone who doesn’t know instinctively that it’s a level playing field is a fool. (ie, they’re either all juiced or all clean, ain’t no middle ground) No one’s squawkin’ about Pevenage coming out with his role as Ullrich’s travel agent in the Fuentes years – what does that say – Jan was doped and still got his ass handed to him by ‘clean’ riders? yeah, right. Any one of us can go to the right doctor and learn the joys of extended youth through HGH – legally. So can we stop sniveling about this pissing contest and watch the race? Besides, when the BALCO narc get’s done Elliot Ness’ing the old Postal records, what’s gonna happen? Nothin’ but another wink and nod footnote to cycling history – this era’s pot Belge. Remember, here we watch – over there, they bet on cycling like the ponies. If you don’t think the team bosses don’t treat the riders like a bunch of horses, you’re kidding yourself.

  32. I want some HGH and some steroids. Anyone can help me? I weigh 142 lbs and I used to weigh 160. When I was a 23 year old military brick shit house I weighed at most 170 and could bench press 185 lbs. 12 times. Why am I losing weight through my 30s? I would gladly take some ‘dope’, but not to win; to not wither away.

  33. I would love to be back down to 170 (my old racing weight…) Hell, just under 200. A couple of years rock climbing mean that I don’t have the standard cyclist lack of upper body I used to… Do they have weight losing steroids?

  34. Let me see if I’ve got this straight Littlejar, you’re a “Bicycle Mechanic”, a “Marine”, a “Writer” & now you’re claiming to have been a “Latrine”.

    I must be honest, I find that last career choice a little disturbing…

  35. Dipshit fuck. I am a bicycle mechanic. I have made a lot of people happy fixing bicycles. Fuck you. I am a writer, though not a career writer YET. I never claimed to be a MARINE as in the USMC, the CORPS. Fuck you. I was in the Air Force and worked on combat aircraft for four years in Tucson. All truth, you shit for fucking brains. Take your insults + go to hell. Tired of it.

  36. I’m sorry LittleJar,

    I must have read “I was a 23 year old military brick shit house” in post #35 wrongly, my Bad.

    But yes, you did claim to be a “Marine”, remember an altercation with Joe the Electrician, where you said & I quote, “You’re fucking with the wrong marine”

    I recognised the quote, only “A few good men” would know it.

  37. And of course you would have certification to show that you are indeed a “bicycle mechanic”.

    What am I thinking ? of course you would.

  38. I have a ‘bike mechanic’s certification’ and it basically means dick all.

  39. Absolutely, as does my College degree, but it does indicate that you made an honest effort.

    I’m in computers, I can honestly say that I probably throw out 20% of my knowledge every year. Programming languages that I was certified in 5 years ago ? No one even uses them anymore.

    But I can honestly say that I met a standard.

  40. I can patch a puncture on the bike of the kid next door, it makes them happy, it does not make me a “Bicycle Mechanic”

  41. litte jar…get your brain back and make it ‘MOTHERFUCKING BIG JAR’
    if there ever was….

  42. Littlejar,

    Tucson !!

    My God, why didn’t you say so, I can see why they’d need Combat aircraft there, that’s front line shit!

    The ‘Stan & Iraq got nuthin on those bad boys.

  43. Do good.
    Avoid doing evil.
    Drink with the dark lord
    but don’t let him open it for you.

  44. Absolutely, Littlejar.

    Words to live by, but I’d avoid the Dark Lord, as they say, “if you lie down with dogs, you get up with fleas.”

    Ultimately, if you can look at yourself in the mirror & like what you see, you’re doing good.