Exciting times!
ALLEZ - JV Araneta (The Freeman) - August 17, 2020 - 12:00am

With the cycling season stacked up for 3 months and one week, overlap events are expected. Last Saturday was an example. There were three races live  on the net at the same time, good thing the race schedules allowed us to watch it one at a time during the finish.

The I’Lombardia (Italy), the 4th stage of the Criterium de Dauphine (France) and the Dwars Door Het Hageland, Translation: Race across the Hagelands (Belgium) were all raced on the same day! How sick was that for a cycling fan?

With the Tour de France “most likely” to proceed in two weeks, everybody who wants to be there are scrambling to find their form they lost during the lock down. Ex TdF winners Geraint Thomas and Chris Froome don’t look like they are ready for the Grand Depart. I wouldn’t be surprised if Froome will be left out of the team based on his form alone. Defending champion Egan Bernal looks ok but his blade needs to be sharpened. Nairo Quintana also looks ok but he isn’t showing a similar form he showed pre-covid-19.

And that leaves us with the team to beat for the TdF- Jumbo-Visma. It seems sacrilegious to say that when INEOS (nee SKY), has been terrorising the peloton for almost a decade. But lets face it, this is the year that INEOS doesn’t look bulletproof.

If I were to pick winner of the TdF today, it would be Primoz Roglic of JV. So far, the defending champion of the Vuelta a Espana and the 1st runner of the Giro d’Italia, is just heads and shoulders over everyone else. He easily dropped Bernal without breaking a sweat. More importantly, he has the team to back him up. His other helpers, or domestiques include Tom Dumoulin, the 2017 Giro d’Italia champion and Steven Kruijswijk, 3rd behind Bernal last year. Remember last week when I wrote about Wout van Aert last week? Well, with all his one day racing abilities, he is just a helper in the JV machine the can help Roglic win the Tour. Thats how good JV is.

I know that a lot of things can still happen between today and August 29 but barring any accident, this year’s Tour will be JV’s to lose.

The I’Lombardia was won by Jacob Fulgsang, a 35yo Danish rider. Fulgsang is your typical cheese and wine rider, and he beat a good Kiwi in George Bennet who was way over his head when he thought he could overpower Fulgsang. Poor Bennet attacked and attacked but the Dane couldn’t be shaken off. So when Jacob counterattacked, Bennet was left holding on for 2nd place but it was a good showing for Bennet. Bennet and Fulgsang will be lining up for the Giro “dItalia later this season.

However, the news about Fulgsangs win was overshadowed by a really bad accident. Favourite Remco Evenepoel hit a 2-3-foot stone railing of a very old bridge while descending at about 70kph and flipped over falling about 15-20 feet down a ravine. It was a tense moment waiting for the paramedics to come over and the situation of the Evenepoel to be reported, potentially the brightest star of cycling for years to come.

Fortunately, he just “ended” with a a broken hipbone and a contused lung. It could have been worse, or fatal. The prognosis so far is good but early reports say that he has to waive his 2020 season for now. He was also scheduled to ride the Giro d’Italia.

To watch racing over the net for free, go to this site: https://tiz-cycling.io/home/.

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