January is the season of the pointless, where news is scarce, and inane but unaviodable questions inevitably arise. Questions like “isn’t Phil Ligget too old to wear shorts? Isn’t Tom Boonen a little rich to have such a crappy haircut? Why is Paolo Bettini trying to win Tour of Flanders? Why is the Rider’s Union glorifying Dick Pound’s semi-coherent ranting (scroll down) with the threat of legal action? And why, if the CAS is the highest court for sport arbitration in the world, can Danilo Hondo attempt to strike down its decisions in Swiss civil court? Does this mean we can expect the same from Tyler Hamilton if his appeal comes up short? Why is the TdF starting in London when the French, a cruel and spiteful race, are still PO’d about losing the 2012 Olympics? Why are rumors of a Lance/Sheryl breakup being denied before I’ve even heard them? Should I apply for a job at VeloNews? Why does Ag2r bike sponsor Decathlon think “B’Twin” (scroll down) is a less lame name than “Decathlon”?” *sigh*. I just wish people would start racing bikes again.
As fortune provides, though, that moment is just around the corner. Daily Peloton was so excited about CSC racing at next month’s Tour of California that they announced it two seperate times. And the Jacob’s Creek Tour Down Under is so close at hand that I can almost smell the untanned flesh burning in the merciless Southern sun. Heck, the Australian National Championships are already underway. And people are really getting revved up to be turning the cranks in anger again. You can totally feel it in the air. That first link, about Boonen’s crappy hair, has his schedule, as well as Team Discovery Channel’s line-up for some early season races. And some riders are already skipping their winter sideshows to get fit for the ’06 ProTour. Speaking of, maybe you’re nervous that racing will be less thrilling because of this ProTour/Grand Tour schism? Well, Tom Boonen (again, that first link) says, much like I do, that:
“You can’t make a classic less important, or not participate in the Tour, just because those races aren’t in the ProTour. It’s ridiculous. Cycling made a fool out of itself.”
In the tradition of Beethoven, Einstein and Carrot Top, it appears once again that the guy with the worst hair is also the most brilliant.