A veritable avalanche of news today... thanks to so many of you for kicking things off without me. At this point, so much of the site runs itself that DS Little Bear could ably take charge of things.
- Lars Boom scored an upset win over the more heralded Mikhael Ignatiev in the Men's U-23 Time Trial. Boom's victory is vindication for himself, the Dutch team, sponsor Rabobank, and cyclocross -- which he credited for the win and declared his future. Ignatiev finished a mere nine seconds back in his attempt at a second win (he won in 2005), giving him two straight silver medals instead. Frenchman Jerome Coppel, bound for FdJeux, scored his second consecutive bronze.
- Another upset in the Women's Elite Time Trial, as Hanka Kupfernagel scorched her home soil to upset defending champion Kristin Armstrong by 23 seconds [same link]. Austrian Christiane Soeder won the bronze; Americans Amber Neben and Christine Thorburn took the next two spots, making it 3 of the top 5 for the US women. The 33-year-old Kupfernagel started over two hours before Armstrong, based on UCI seeding, to give you an idea of how unexpected the result was. But hey, that's Cycling.
- Speaking of the time trials, heavy rains are forecast for tomorrow's Elite Men's race, which could make things pretty interesting, or horrible, depending on whether you have to be there.
- Meanwhile, the nonsense is piling up around the Men's Elite Road Race. German Interior Minister Wolfgang Schauble continues to play stupid politics with the race, freezing €150,000 in subsidies for the event because he's not satisfied with the level of anti-doping spirit in the peloton. His latest snit is in response to Paolo Bettini's refusal to sign the anti-doping pledge. A more mature response might be to threaten Bettini with exclusion, rather than undermining the entire race.
Update [2007-9-26 16:41:33 by chris]: CN explains that Bettini signed a DNA pledge, rather than the Tour pledge, because he didn't ride the Tour! Apparently that's too complicated, or too inconsequential to get between Schauble and more idiotic grandstanding.
- Bettini, meanwhile, is in more serious hot water, after a TV station claims Sinking Joke fingered him for supplying the testosterone patch that shook the world in July. [Sorry, testosterone is cheating, and I don't like it, but the sky-is-falling reaction to the Sinkewitz incident is a bit much for me. He was caught, he's out. Can we get on with life?] Sinkewitz issued the standard denial after Bettini supposedly confronted him, but this doesn't sound good.
- In the most depressing news ever, Danilo DiLuca is likely out as CONI (his home federation) is expected to announce a temporary three-month ban while they sort out the latest allegations. This fucking sucks.