Arrrg! Shimano, why? First Cannondale and now you? You beat SunTour in the 80’s by pouring millions into engineering and research. You were so awesome when you came out with the 10 speed Dura-Ace in ’03 and said “our research shows aluminum cranks are better”. Now you let idiot mechanics say “Nowadays everybody wants to use carbon when possible, so Shimano are starting to use it in areas such as chainsets.”? Simply unreal. This only propagates the idiotic notion that road bike lines go “aluminum, aluminum with carbon stays, full carbon”. I promise you, consumers will make you suffer by remembering that.
But what should I expect, you know? Cycling’s a European sport, and Euros, well, they just don’t make sense. The Tour says it needs to regain its credibility. And how does it plan to do that? By making riders sign a pledge? Awesome. Because pledges have historically been so successful and even-handed. And you’ve gotta love the German approach to anti-doping – banning Erik Zabel for confessing a single incidence of doping over a decade ago. Got something dark in your past? Just ban it. That’ll keep deep-seated wrongdoing from ever resurfacing. Honestly, when the entire continent functions like this, it’s an economic wonder the Euro remains strong.
So after all this, I’m thinking Unibet.com’s best shot at this year’s TdF isn’t through the courts. The team should instead channel its legal fees into sneaking the same nine riders into the early kilometers of every stage. Sure, they’ll need to use progressively more sophisticated means of insertion as the race goes on (disguises, bribery, HALO jumps) but once a single rider catches a draft off a Unibet wheel, ASO will be forced to accept them into the event, or risk sacrificing the very race integrity all these Scotch-Tape anti-doping measures are aimed to protect.