July 01, 2005

2005 Tour de France: The Tour starts tomorrow, and Armstrong says he feels "better than I've ever felt." None of the 189 entrants failed the race organization's blood tests Thursday, but Friday the French government random doping control re-tested one rider: Lance Armstrong.

posted by dusted to other at 03:55 PM - 24 comments

Yeah, that's pretty random all right.

posted by mr_crash_davis at 04:14 PM on July 01, 2005

I can't wait until the Olympics go to Paris, and the French do their random drug tests (probably mostly of Americans but more likely the athletes that have the best chance of beating their athletes; the French do have athletes, don't they?).

posted by graymatters at 04:48 PM on July 01, 2005

Am I allowed to plug this exceedingly long post I made elsewhere? Oops, I guess I just did. Someone can delete it if it's too much of a self-link. Anyone watch the Tour presentation today? Jan Ullrich had a pretty big bandage on his neck after crashing yesterday. He looked pretty peeved at the guy asking him stupid questions...

posted by afx237vi at 05:02 PM on July 01, 2005

afx237vi, self-links are fine if they're in the body of the post and you're not being sneaky about it.

posted by dusted at 05:14 PM on July 01, 2005

Okay, thank you. Personally, I think this is shaping up to be a great Tour. Most of the main contenders having openly stated their intention to attack Armstrong in the mountains. I think last year the T-Mobile squad figured that Jan was not in good shape early on and were just resigned to fact that he would win again. Not so this year... Kloden is rubbish, but Jan and Vino both look good. Same with Basso... last year he couldn't TT, but now, seemingly, he's bloody good at it. Can't wait until tomorrow!

posted by afx237vi at 05:20 PM on July 01, 2005

I too am stoked. I'm going to run late for work many days watching this stuff in the mornings. And hasn't Lance been tested, like, every time he happens to not be actually on a bike for years now already?

posted by chicobangs at 05:47 PM on July 01, 2005

You'd think one of these tests would finally reveal that he wasn't human.

posted by squealy at 06:25 PM on July 01, 2005

Lance's urethral implant filters out all performance-enhancing substances before his urine is discharged. The implant recycles the substances to maximize effectiveness. Any substances that cannot be reused are transmogrified and passed out as methane gas while Lance is riding. (Don't look at me. It's in the latest issue of Intergalactic Cycling Performance Nano-Mechanics -- vol. 5 ed. 12)

posted by worldcup2002 at 02:57 PM on July 02, 2005

Ha! And here I thought I'd only read that article in my mind. And after Day 1, he's already a minute up on the best of his competition. Watch him now, kids, so you can say you did.

posted by chicobangs at 03:29 PM on July 02, 2005

I wish I could. Earth tv doesn't show it over here. Bastards.

posted by squealy at 06:17 PM on July 02, 2005

Vaguely interesting video where we learn that crocked Kiwi cyclist Julian Dean trains on his roof, we get a look at the x-ray of his elbow (ouch!) and learn that the spanish are offended by bare feet.

posted by squealy at 06:42 PM on July 02, 2005

Whether Lance wins seven in a row or not is irrelevent. He is by far the best Tour cyclist ever. As "chicagobangs" said, "watch him now", his kind of greatness may never be seen in our lifetime again.

posted by stockman1021 at 07:11 PM on July 02, 2005

Yeah, the man seems fully dialed in, all right. Of course, anything might happen, but I think Lance has shown himself to be a master of (among other things) allowing for circumstances and being prepared when things do happen. It's a true gift to know what matters the most to you. When combined with the gift to be the best at that thing, it's the greatest gift any human being ever gets. Seventh win or no (and I'm thinking he'll do it), Lance is one of the most fortunate people walking this planet.

posted by lil_brown_bat at 08:03 PM on July 02, 2005

Well, "stockcarman" :), there is one big strike against Lance's legacy, and that's that he only ever does the Tour de France. He doesn't do any of the other major races over the course of the year. So yeah, if you only count the Tour de France, there's no one better. But if he had raced in the Giro d'Italia or the Tour de Suisse of the Vuelta d'Espana or any of the other main races over the rest of the year, and had even half the success he's had over twice as many races, then he'd possibly be up into Eddy Merckx territory.

posted by chicobangs at 08:35 PM on July 02, 2005

Pretty cool that Lance passed Ullrich - Cycling News has some great photos of the entire stage. Here he comes... there he goes. It was fun watching so many riders come in so far behind Zabriskie. He had an incredible ride.

posted by dusted at 11:57 PM on July 02, 2005

I don't think that steriods could make Armstrong do what he does. I figure it's mostly black magic and he eats virgins when the moon is in the right place. But, that's not gonna show up on a piss test. Cosmic might isn't found in urine.

posted by WeedyMcSmokey at 10:43 AM on July 03, 2005

Ok! Wait! Where were you guys the last few weeks when so much of the following was said: 1. He is not in good shape! 2. His TT time are down! 3. He can't do it again! I was ONE of a few who said don't bet against him. Cycling is as much a head game as a phyiscal race. That don't believe what you read. They said the same thing last year! Lance downplays his conditioning. He doesn't get into the verbal barbs with Ullrich just says, "we'll see in July." Hmmm... smooth water runs deep...sound familar to the old saying doesn't it. Again down by 2 seconds, tested over and over, (impants that is a good one..what next!) what make Lance win? Lance! Training! Heart! Quiet confidence! Anything could happen it's only the end of stage two. I has been saying for over a month,"Don't bet against him." I still wouldn't! I didn't fall for the stories before I won't now. You have to beat him! He is not going to beat himself. So far, he is right out in front cruising along patiently just as he always is at this time. My suggestion? Enjoy this race.... watch it... it is the last one.... savor it.... and by all means barring a horrify accident look for him in Paris counting to SEVEN on his fingers this year!

posted by Rob at 01:02 PM on July 03, 2005

Rob - my hat is off to you. I can't believe you had the, ya I'll say it, sheer BALLS to pick Lance Armstrong as the winner this year. Whew, I know it's a tough choice, but I agree, when it all comes down to it, you gotta back a six-time defending champ. Don't forget to rub it people's face if, I mean, when (wink, wink) he wins. Also, I'm suprised that the nick "Rob" lasted over 2300 picks.

posted by WeedyMcSmokey at 04:58 PM on July 03, 2005

Lance! Training! Heart! Quiet confidence!

posted by dusted at 12:22 AM on July 04, 2005

I was quite hoping he did well. Now I want him to crash and burn. I'm so fickle.

posted by squealy at 04:15 AM on July 04, 2005

The team time trial tomorrow should be very interesting, after two days of ho-hum sprinter's stages. It's going to be 42 miles long with some steep climbs in the last section. I'm really hoping that some of the other teams can beat Discovery, if only to make the yellow jersey race more interesting.

posted by dusted at 08:42 PM on July 04, 2005

Ah yes, if you missed this article when it was first posted, I can highly recommend it.

posted by BigCalm at 10:49 AM on July 05, 2005

It's all over, Armstrong has won it already. I would take issue with the view that Armstrong is the best ever. As has been stated, he only rides the one race and I am also not sure that he has had quite the competition of previous greats such as Anquetil, Merckx, Hinault, Lemond, Delgado and Big Mig. He's up there though.

posted by Fat Buddha at 06:48 PM on July 05, 2005

Just out of curiosity, how many of them came back from cancer? In Lance's case, it's more than the sport itself that makes him great.

posted by The_Black_Hand at 11:07 AM on July 06, 2005

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