Check out my New Blog  

Posted by FLATOUT JIM


Tour de Blah

I started consistently posting about the Tour de France, and then had a brainstorm, why not create a brand new blog, about just the Tour de France. So I did.

It seemed like such a no brainer. There seemed to be an endless supply of ideas for posts and ideas. Every time I talked to friends, co-workers, and relatives, they would ask me what seemed like simple questions about the tour. 10 years ago, the same questions puzzled me as well.

So my plan is to provide some easy reading answers to common tour questions to make a casual viewer into a full fledged fan.

I wanted to call it Tour de Blog, but that was taken, so instead I called it Tour de Blah.

Please check it out, and don’t be scared to sign on as a follower, and leave comments. Even ask a question.

Once the tour is over, I may continue with sort of a general cycling blog, we’ll have to see.

Tour de France Stage 5  

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Question. How can race organizers make a flat sprinter stage exciting?
Answer. Make the riders crash.

Read more about stage 5 on my new blog HERE

Tour de France Stage 4  

Posted by FLATOUT JIM

That's Cadel Evans just outstretching Alberto at the line for the stage victory.

Another day, another flat stage, teased by the mini Alpe D’Huez, the cat 3 climb ending the stage was too steep for the pure sprinters, and not steep or long enough for the pure climbers.

Want more? Check out my new blog TOUR DE BLAH

Tour de France Stage 3  

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Flat and built for speed, with a slight rise over the arch bridge at Sainte Nazerine a mere bump for the climbers in this years tour.

On July 4th, the U.S.A.s Tyler Ferar became the first ever American to win a stage on the American Holiday, and Argyle Power reigned supreme, as big Thor retained the yellow. Also for Canadian fans, Ryder has clawed himself up to 57th, just 1:14 back.

No big changes for the leaders, as the Schleck brothers are still only 4 seconds off the lead, while Alberto, saved some gas for the upcoming Pyranese and still sits at 1:42.

The mountains are coming. Stay tuned.

Tour de France Stage 2 the Team Time Trial  

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So Alberto Contador’s reward for being caught on the wrong side of Saturday’s crash with 10k remaining in the opening stage, was first team to start the team time trial. Alberto’s team Saxo mates had to all drop back and try and ride back some time for the defending champ dropping the entire team to last overall.

So come Sunday, Alberto seemed determined to ride himself back into contention, and Saxo appeared to be setting a blistering pace, and stood up against many of the weaker teams, but once the big teams like Robobank and Garmin Cevelo, set out, it became apparent that Saxos time would not stand up. The Garmin team appeared to be handpicked to win this stage in mind, and betterd Saxo by almost 30 seconds.

So not only did Alberto not make up time, he may have blown apart his team in the process, driving team Saxo and dropping 3 teammates in the process as they couldn’t keep up to the blistering speed.

At the end of the day, BIG THOR topped the podium, Alberto dropped an additional 20 seconds on the leader, and Andy Schleck is sitting pretty only 4 seconds away from the yellow.




So what’s up for Monday? A relatively uneventfull stage with 1 category 4 climb at Sainte Nazerine, about a third of the way in, leaving tons of time for the peleton to regroup, and reel in any of the climbers. There are also some sprinter points up for grabs which will also motivate those teams to not let too big a gap develop on the climb, so stay tuned for Redon to Olonne-Sur-Mer.

And the defending champ has some work to do.

Tour de France Stage 1  

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Well, did anyone predict that finish? So here I sit, and my prediction number 1 now has a solid chance of becoming reality. In an opening day filled with spills and crashes, the most significant occurred with about 10k left in the stage, splitting the peleton, just as the sprint teams were ramping it up to position their riders for a crack at Green Jersey Points.

At the end of the day, Alberto was way down in the general classification, 1 minute and 20 seconds back, while his chief challengerAndy Shleck was only 6 seconds back.

Now all of a sudden, the stage 2 Team Time trial goes from being an opportunity to separate the pack, to an absolute must make up time for the Contadore crew. At the very least, they must not lose time on the challengers.

Stage 2 will be very exciting. Can’t wait.

Tour de France Predictions  

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It’s a huge weekend across the globe. Canada Day today, July 4th Monday, Women’s World Cup in Germany, and Tour de France starting on Saturday.

Here are some of my predictions for 2011.

1. Alberto will not win this years tour. He’s now the guy with the target on his back, and personnaly, I don’t think he has the Posse to protect him through the entire 21 days.
2. Andy Shleck will stand on the top step of the podium in Paris.
3. 5 years from now, the final standings will be completely different than the end of June.
4. The number of people in the United States interested in the tour will drop by 50 percent with Lance retired.
5. The number of people who will not tune in to this years tour because they are sick of all the talk about doping will increase by 90 percent.

Well, I’m not a TDF expert like Phil Paul and Bob, but I am a fan, I’ll be watching come tomorrow, and my final prediction is that I will be better than 500 on my previous 5 predictions.

Finally, go Ryder. Make us proud on Canada Day/Weekend.

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