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Non-News Flash! I Am an Idiot.

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A sampling of pre-race predictions for the Tour de Suisse:

Swiss star Fabian Cancellara is not an overall contender, but the presence of two time trials, each with routes that suit him, means that Fabian is likely to be feature prominently in the race. 

That's Ed Madden from Steephill.TV. Here's what VN had to say:


OK, they didn't do a proper preview. But CN did...


OK, they destroyed their archives this week, or at least made them impossible to find. I swear, their content loss in the changeover is reminiscent of Chicago after the Great Fire. Suffice to say they listed the usual suspects. Here's what you may have read in the Podium Cafe's race preview:

Are the Swiss gaming the course for Fabian Cancellara?

This isn't as frivolous as it may sound at first. I'm not sure they would ever flatten out the course enough for Tony Spartacus to win the overall. His previous best finish is something like 79th. But I do wonder if the amount of time available in the first and last time trials is getting pretty close to the time gaps available in the climbs? If Cancellara can survive the long, slow climb back to Davos, then he's got a chance of holding his position from the ITT (yellow?) at least to the end of stage 4. Stage 5 would require him to hang on by his fingernails, and stages 7-8 would again see him limiting his losses to something he can recoup in the final ITT. My guess is he'll blow up massively on one of the huge climbs and shift into training for the Tour mode, but every day he hangs around ramps up the pressure on him to hang around more.

In other words, I found an urge to predict that Cancellara would win the overall... and completely chickened out. I blame Madden: had I not gone and read his preview, it never would have occurred to me that I might look foolish by predicting a Tony Spartacus win. But I did, and it did, which is why you're left with this mealy-mouthed aversion to brilliance. In fairness, the idea was more of a whim than a researched position, so had I not chickened out, we'd still be talking about blind pigs finding the occasional acorn.

Anyway, Cancellara hasn't won yet, in a "Lance is up by five minutes and sipping champagne as they roll into Paris but you never know" kind of way. Actually, he's surrounded on GC by guys who can also rip off a phenomenal time trial: Kreuziger, Martin, Kloden, Karpets, Kirchen and Taaramae, all within 20-60 seconds. No way are any of them favored to beat Cancellara by that margin +1... but it's thin enough where one slipup by the Olympic crono champ could cost him the race. I will certainly be glued to the computer one last time (hooray live TV Tour coverage!). For about 45 minutes or so, this should be good clean fun.


Tourbeccow says: "I had Cancellara to win all the way."

Chris replies: Bullshit.