Friday, June 30, 2006

Well, crap

I want the dopers out as much as the next guy...but dayamn. I can't help but feel sad for Jan. There is something about his persona that inspires sympathy. I think Michael hit on something here, Jan's human-ness. Even with his geneticically freaky heart and lungs.

While Lance competed machine like, Jan was more human. He had bad days, he crashed, he cracked. Machine like is ...well boring. But Jan added much needed drama to the tour and he had bad days, like us mortals.

Even after repeated defeat, his words about Lance and cycling were always humble, honorable and mature. He seldom lost his temper and he never engaged in that silly melodramatic Simoni-ish trash talk.

And on those days, when he didn't crack, when his form and his motivation aligned...he was the most powerful man on the bike. I loved watching him race when this happened. Gritted teeth, bellowing lungs, and femurs that could pull a train. Good stuff.

I've been rooting for him to win since the Bianchi year. How difficult it must have been for him to win the Tour at such a young age, and to not live up to all the expectations that were put on him at that time. No matter how many National, World or Olympic titles he won, he would not be fully redeemed until he won the tour again. And this was to be the year that finally happened.

I agree with Michael, that this is probably it for Jan. This is no drunken party night with Vino. This is real trubble and Jan is not in his twenties anymore.

How sad.

So be it.


At 10:17 AM, June 30, 2006, Blogger ginmtb said...

You know, he really should have two titles, since he had to be the good lieutenant with Riis in '96. He carried that guy to his title.

So much for the dramatic post-Lance tour... Not sure this is the drama they wanted.

Should be interesting to watch though. TWW has made its prediction for the podium:

TWW Tour Prediction

At 10:27 AM, June 30, 2006, Blogger Flandria said...

i hear ya ...

At 10:29 AM, June 30, 2006, Blogger PAB said...

i'm wondering if there isn't time for one more plot twist before this thing finally starts.....

At 10:29 AM, June 30, 2006, Blogger Olaf Vanderhoot said...

fantastic post.

At 10:31 AM, June 30, 2006, Blogger Olaf Vanderhoot said...

oy ... damn that Gin.

how does he always make me look like the biggest frickin' flamer?

... oh.

At 10:41 AM, June 30, 2006, Blogger ginmtb said...

Um, me?

Not I

Now if you really want me to make you look like a big time flamer... it has been awhile since I've done some serious pshop work... muwahahahahahaha!!!

At 10:41 AM, June 30, 2006, Blogger ginmtb said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

At 11:27 AM, June 30, 2006, Blogger Soigneur_Tim said...

Can't argue with the sentiment. When I saw the news this AM I just though "DAYUMM"! I mean, I expected the Spanish guys, and I expected some more to fall, but IVAN and JAN? Not those two. I mean Hamilton, well he'd already been suspended and sanctioned, so tossing him onto the pile wasn't so much a shock.

So my DVR is set up to start taping tomorrow morning just so I can get used to who is the Best of the Rest. Sure David and Floyd and George will benefit from this, but so hopefully will some up-an-comers we've never heard much of. If nothing else, this will be an interesting race.

And the other question on my mind is will Vino and the Astana team get to even race at all? Sounds like ASO is trying hard to prevent them from riding.

At 2:02 PM, June 30, 2006, Blogger tink said...

I am heartbroken. utterly heartbroken. your post was perfectly worded. my sentiments exactly. with all the riders gone and a few more potentially gone as the tour goes on,whos left to ride? all the bellas might as well give it a go to win it, at least we're clean.

At 2:34 PM, June 30, 2006, Blogger Benjaminiac said...

what a predicament.

you have your sentimental favorites who you just can't believe doped (tyler, jan, ivan) cuz they're such nice people.

and then you have your loudmouthed asses who are guilty as hell cuz they acted like spoiled children in front of reporters.

wise up people, someone's on screen persona does not make them legit or a fraud.

and i'm afraid of the sentiment that cycling will end and "who will be left when the dust settles?" it does not follow that because you "can't believe" that bigproX can do it, and he did, that everyone is doing it.

have faith in humanity.

or, maybe i'll be one of the only ones left, but i'll be damned if there's a cloud of suspicion over my head.

At 2:56 PM, June 30, 2006, Blogger ginmtb said...

Nice try BJM:

Guilty as charged

At 3:16 PM, June 30, 2006, Blogger Velo Bella said...

But for most of us fans, without any special insight to the individuals of racing, that public persona is all we have. It how we base who we root for and who we jeer for.

I'm not naive enough to think they are all clean, but its still disappointing when one of your favorites gets popped.

At 3:23 PM, June 30, 2006, Blogger Ippoc Amic said...

I'm with you VB, and Jan looked so lean and fit...oh well...

At 8:57 AM, July 01, 2006, Blogger X Bunny said...

i felt the same way when tyler got popped

i mean, he was so nice
and his whole dog story was so heartbreaking

but, as i have been told,
nice has nothing to do with it

i am going to miss watching jan mash those high gears up the mountains

or since we don't have tv and can't find coverage on line, i guess i won't really miss anything


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