Heading down the home stretch... the Tour starts in five days! I've always wondered what riders do with these quiet times. If it were me, I'd be alternately freaking out wondering if I'd done enough, or too much, and zoning out with very loud music to make the hours fly by. As a blogger, I have none of these problems. Nobody will test me for excessive espresso when I need to get charged up again for another stage preview.
- The Times of London has a remarkable interview with Greg LeMond that places a lot of his life into better perspective. If you don't mind the fact that author/Cyclist Paul Kimmage quotes himself almost as much as LeMond, it's well worth the read. Some slow day this offseason I'm writing a huge LeMond tribute. h/t Cycloblog and CN.
- VN's Andy Hood, ever rooting out something of interest, has a vital piece for all VDS players: rating the French teams! I'm still looking for the definitive explanation of their 21-year drought. I blame soccer.
- Alessandro Petacchi will learn his fate in time to start the Tour. If he's cleared.
- The Nationals are over, and except for a few time trial results (do they not bother with these disciplines in Belgium and the Netherlands?), the big names are all posted to your right. Jered at Pez has a nice roundup with some details of how the jerseys were won. CN has mostly posted detailed stories from a few places (Belgium, France, Italy...).
- Also at Pez, get to know the Plastic Peloton up close!
- Often times we'll do a media roundup but it's kind of a waste for the Tour. Everybody knows how to find Versus, the big news sites, and the bigger blogs. Le Tour's Official Site has a much-improved US version... follow this link if you're still using the older French site. All the TV sites will have highlights, and Cycling.TV has a full schedule planned of highlights and in-studio fun, IIRC. I'll look to them to provide a better description, probably showing up on email in a day or so.