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Jul 18 2011

Le Tour- Rest Day 2

Le.  Tour.  De.  France.

Had a chance to chat with Armando last night which I’ve always found very enjoyable despite others having a different experience.  Nobody is obligated to treat you any particular way on the Internet and if you’re going to expose yourself you just have to get used to that.

His analysis echos the consensus view expressed here which if I might be allowed to summarize is that Contador has missed his best opportunity for a victory and barring a miraculous comeback in the Alps is no longer a contender.

He’s a little more skeptical of the Schleck brothers’ prospects than I am, perhaps because of their reputation as poor time trialers, and likes Cadel Evan’s chances.  Aussie, Aussie, Aussie, Oy, Oy, Oy.

I personally think that anyone in the top 8 (well, except for Contador) is close enough to strike and 2 minutes being what it is we could even see a Frenchman (gasp), albeit one with an Alsatian name, cruising down the Champs Elysees in yellow in a little less than a week.

The standings as of the second (and last) Rest Day-

Rank Name Team ET delta
1 Thomas Voeckler Europcar 65h 24′ 34″
2 Frank Schleck Leopard Trek 65h 26′ 23″ + 01′ 49″
3 Cadel Evans BMC 65h 26′ 40″ + 02′ 06″
4 Andy Schleck Leopard Trek 65h 26′ 49″ + 02′ 15″
5 Ivan Basso Cannondale 65h 27′ 50″ + 03′ 16″
6 Samuel Sanchez Euskaltel 65h 28′ 18″ + 03′ 44″
7 Alberto Contador Saxo Bank 65h 28′ 34″ + 04′ 00″
8 Damiano Cunego Lampre 65h 28′ 35″ + 04′ 01″
9 Tom Danielson Garmin 65h 30′ 20″ + 05′ 46″
10 Kevin De Weert Quick Step 65h 30′ 52″ + 06′ 18″

What type of race do we have remaining?  Mountains.  Medium tomorrow and Alps for the next 3 days.  Then the Individual Time Trial that is supposed to be the Schleck’s Achilles’ Heel.  Finally the big parade to the Champs which is customarily contended only by the sprinters while the GC also rans accept their fate with dignity.

So there’s not much race left.

I’m hoping the Vs. coverage at 8 am has a little more recap and a little less yesterday than the first Rest Day did.  Limoux to Montpellier was instructive in the points competition but not so much for the overall.  If you miss it there are plenty of repeats at 11:30 am, 3 pm, 8 pm, and midnight.

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