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Holy Week Feedbag

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Gentwev_mediumAs great as Gent-Wevelgem and La Fleche Wallonne are, there's a reason they don't run the biggest classics during the week: because it's not convenient for me. Time just for a few notes:

* True confession (o/t), I promoted the story about Lance's tiff with the controllers yesterday because it sounded amusing. It is officially no longer amusing.

* Thanks to all for the intelligence (both meanings) you provided on the Kemmelberg in yesterday's thread. I am no longer convinced that this will be overly decisive, and am counting on the weather to make this race interesting. We will have to wait and see; among the variables are the fundamental nature of weather, and my fundamental inability to comprehend wind directions. A "south wind" is one blowing north, right? You can see how confusing this is. Anyway, the race runs in roughly a 270-degree arc, so a 20-mph wind from any direction will eventually be trouble. I still don't see a bunch sprint.

* From the startlist, here are my ten most interesting names:

  1. Juan Antonio Flecha... down but not out. Likes the slop.
  2. Stijn Devolder... amazing how you can win Flanders and still have nothing to lose? OK, maybe he'll reel it in for Paris-Roubaix, but a Devolder attack in the last 15km is almost too obvious for anyone to suspect.
  3. Wouter Weylandt... Three top-10 finishes in sprint races shows he's not Mark Cavendish, but in the right group...
  4. Martin Elmiger... 12th at MSR, 9th at de Ronde. Can finish off a small group. My dark horse! [Assuming you can bag 9th in Flanders and still fit the definition.]
  5. Random FdJeux Guy... Every race they have someone in the mix. What's changed since last year? Did someone switch the pre-race music to Daft Punk?
  6. Matti Breschel... Something's gotta give with Saxo. Breschel was in the front group Sunday, so he's clearly got the legs. And the speed.
  7. Heinrich Haussler... I'd say he should save it for Sunday, but he just doesn't know any other way right now.
  8. Mike Friedman... taking a flier here. Look for Garmin to have guys up the road early. If this race is as treacherous as it could be, that might be more than just a flier.
  9. Bjorn Leukemans... Fun guy. Totally on fire right now.
  10. Mark Cavendish... Just because it's not inevitable doesn't mean he won't win.

Your picks?? I'll say Flecha, solo, in the slop.