I was rather pleased with so much sport this weekend that my personal take on cycling should make the front page. Reporting on cycling these days is like apologising for halitosis. Its a sport that Team Sky dominates but scandal never seems far off to puncture any achievement. Those who are critical of the sport – not without justification – should have followed yesterday’s stage through the Jura mountains with 3 “hors de categorie” climbs. Much is made of ascending the “cols” but it takes real guts to descend the slippery slopes at 40 mph.
Chris Froome also lost his Lieutenant Geraint Thomas on the descent with a broken collarbone too. The stage went to the wire with a photo finish which Colombian Uran won over Warren Barguil who had the consolation prize of being crowned King of the Mountains.
My fancy Fabio Aru is lying second. He was involved in controversy when he attacked Froome whilst the two time winner had a mechanical failure. Pargie followed my advice with an each way tickle on the talented Italian rider.
The sad thing for me is when I read the records I had a second take of where is Lance Armstrong in the list of 5 time winners? Undoubtedly one of the greats and an inspiration to cancer sufferers his reputation is indelibly tarnished. It begs the question as to whether anyone can triumph in this 3 week ordeal without some substance support?
As to the coverage Eurosport is in the hands of the host broadcaster but I missed that amiable old buffer David Duffield, very much in the Blowers/Alliss mould of superannuated wits and an ex-pro who can explain the issues clearly. Chris Boardman is rather good at this on ITV. Most of all I enjoy the back drop of the French countryside as the peloton makes its way. It may be a minority sport but it’s an exhilarating one.