Go Dad Go!

A self-important blog about riding bikes, raising kids and the all-too-rare nexus of these two pursuits.

Tuesday, July 25, 2006

Stage 3 Recap (from July 4, 2006)

After some back-and-forth with generous donor Rob Kelley, we've determined that the A&D blood pressure monitor will go to the owner of the team who loses the most riders to crashes. This was Karen's idea, actually; she figured it was an appropriate criterion for a prize that's medical in nature, and Rob and I agreed. Granted, this creates some odd, adverse motivation, as some of us may well end up silently watching for our riders to crash, but I'm not terribly concerned; while the monitor is indeed a very generous prize, I don't see any of you traveling to France to take out one of your riders, a la Eddy Merckx getting kidney-punched while going for his sixth Tour win.

An important note: I SWEAR WE DECIDED ON THIS CRITERION BEFORE TODAY'S STAGE.

This last point is relevant because today proved brutal, and not only in the way the final climb, the famed Cauberg (pronounced "Coe-berg," unless you're Bob Roll, in which case it's "Cow-bareg") tore apart the peloton, but also in terms of crashes that ended this year's run for a few notable riders, including Alejandro Valverde, the star of many a team -- including mine. With Valverde, Erik Dekker and Fred Rodriguez all out, Dave Fee and Everett Harper lead in that dubious competition -- though if Stuart O'Grady is unable to start tomorrow, a few others will join them..

Among those who managed to keep the rubber on the road today included winner Matthias Kessler, yesterday's near-hero who launched another blistering, late-stage attack, this time not getting swallowed by the bunch just metres before the line, but lasting long enough to best a surprising, surging Michael Rogers and Daniele Bennati. Kessler, a German riding for T-Mobile, managed to lift the spirits ever so slightly of both his countrymen and his sponsors, who recently lost their World Cup match and their star rider, Jan Ullrich, respectively. Keeping a little extra rubber on the road was Tom Boonen, who rode a squishy tire through the last few kilometers, finished fourth and took over the Maillots Jaune and Vert. He'll wear yellow tomorrow as he rides out of Huy, in his homeland of Belgium; with the next few stages all top tube-flat (and I'm not talking about one of these goofy sloping ones, right Doug? :-) don't expect Boonen to lose either jersey anytime soon.

All of this does little to shape our standings -- yet. The Boonen holders are climbing through the ranks, ever so slowly, and may well surge in the coming pre-mountain days. Of course, for those of us holding Valverde, even the mountains may not bring any relief.

A demain -
Mike

Player Points
Walter Lamerton 32
Bob Fee 25
Jim Fee 25
Jodi Hall 25
Tony Farrell 23
Kat Campbell 16
Alan Levy 15
Elizabeth Eppler 15
Everett Harper 15
Michael Fee 15
Pete November 14
Richard Stagliano 14
Kiernan McGuire 12
Peter Lester 11
Anne Mahle 10
Christian Newman 10
Romas Pencyla 10
David McCarthy 8
Don Fee 8
Paul Keys 8
Rob Kelley 8
Steve Earhart 8
Wes Cole 8
Dan Fee 7
Doug Hall 7
Rachel & Robin Bordoli 7
Andy Sessions 5
Angela Fee 5
Annetta Stroud 5
David Fee 5
Jon Chapman 5
Julie Mikuta 5
Karen Fee 5
Pam Stover 5
Tad Sennott 5
Tom Lariviere 5
Brandon Correia 2
Jordan Cantwell 2
Greg Widmyer 0
Stacy Caldwell 0

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