Friday, July 25, 2008

Calculating with panache?

Tick tock, tick tock...

Ok who's going to win  the time trial? Will it be Carlos Sastre or Cadel Evans for the final Maillot Jaune? I just finished reading an interesting article from the Guardian lambasting Cadel Evans lack of attacking and wheelsucking. Or as the French refer to, a lack of panache. He's not particularly exciting to watch as he bides his time behind other riders. Granted, but does he deserve to win without much effort? The romantic appeal is to watch him ride hard,  win stages or die trying. The admiration from the fickle cycling fans would be the one of envy if he risks  everything to win, again with the heroic effort. 

That said, Evans mediocrity is more so as when he held a training camp in Spain. Only to find himself and his Belgian soigneur as the only attendees.  His Belgium based  Silence-Lotto squad has been virtually invisible and criticised for it's lack of initiative.  I found it funny, that Silence is a company that specializes in... snoring. Somewhat appropriate. You can't really fault Cadel. He's more of a tactician and not the creative artist on the bike. His teammates are just as much deadpan. On the other hand, Sastre has the advantage of panache  as portrayed on his epic victory  to L'Alpe d'Huez. His advantage going into the time trial is that he's up 1' 34" over Evans. The downside is that the time trial is not his speciality. Cadel Evans strength is his own of a time trial monster. Last years Tour resulted with  the expulsion of Team Astana and the exploits of Alexandr Vinokourov's  erased victory in the Albi-Albi time trial. Thus it gave Evans his first Tour stage win. A victory nevertheless.  

Most importantly, Evans remembers last years close second place finish with only 23 seconds from eternal yellow. With the time trial looming. Can he break from his calculating  mould? He may just show that panache needed as  he can finally show everyone that he can win the time trial and grab that final Maillot Jaune with ...  gusto!  

1 comment:

Le Blaireau said...

The Evans calculations were off and I'm sure this is due to his team mates all using the sponsors medication. I was over the moon to see Sastre hold on and CSC have been the team of the tour and thoroughly deserve the top spot in all three the categories they've dominated. A great tour all in all. I think Evans needs a team that will protect him, all that individual effort was clearly shown yesterday and cycling is a team sport

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